Page 4141

4141 HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES

respective subdivisions, will afford a happy issue to the experiment.

Tis well worth a fair and full experiment. With such powerful

and obvious motives to union, affecting all parts of our country,

while experience shall not have demonstrated its impracticability,

there will always be reason to distrust the patriotism of those who,

in any quarter, may endeavor to weaken its bands.

In contemplating the causes which may disturb our Union, it

occurs as a matter of serious concern, that any ground should have

been furnished for characterizing parties by geographical discriminations Northern and Southern, Atlantic and Western-whence

designing men may endeavor to excite a belief that there is a real

difference of local interests and views. One of the expedients of

party to acquire influence within particular districts is to misrepresent the opinions and aims of other districts. You can not

shield yourselves too much against the jealousies and heart-burnings

which spring from these misrepresentations; they tend to render

alien to each other those who ought to be bound together by fraternal

affection.

To the efficacy and permanence of your Union, a government

for the whole is indispensable. No alliance, however strict, between

the parts can be an adequate substitute; they must inevitably

experience the infractions and interruptions which alliances in all

times have experienced. Sensible of this momentous truth, you

have improved upon your first essay by the adoption of a Constitution of Government better calculated than your former one for an

intimate union and for the efficacious management of your common

concerns. This government, the offspring of our own choice, uninfluenced and unawed, adopted upon full investigation and mature

deliberation, completely free in its principles, in the distribution of

its powers, uniting security with energy, and containing within

itself a provision for its own amendment, has a just claim to your

confidence and your support. Respect for its authority, compliance

with its laws, acquiescence in its measures, are duties enjoined by

the fundamental maxims of true liberty. The basis of our political

system is the right of the people to make and to alter the Constitution of Government. But the Constitution which at any time

exists, until changed by an explicit and authentic act of the whole

people, is sacred and obligatory upon all. The very idea of the

power and the right of the people to establish government presupposes