Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 28.djvu/171
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tin- several Si.itrs. it i tlu- constitution ) docs not e\< n s.iv tli.it it ( the general government ) is established l.v tin- people of tin- several St..' but it pronounces that it is established by tin- |>ro|>l<- of the I'niied States in the aggregate So they declare, and words c.m
not be plainer than tin- word* used. * They ordained such
a government, thev gave it the name of a constitution, and therein they established a distribution of powers between this, their general government, and their several State governments. "
Of course, the constitution does not anywhere declare that it has been established "by the people of the United States in the aggre- gate." Referring to that matter in another chapter, Mr. (irady explains why the different States were not severally mentioned in the Declaration of Independence, and remarks that it was for the very reason which caused their names to be stricken out of the constitu- tion after " we, the people." That reason was that it was not known to the committee appointed to draft the declaration whether all the colonies would approve it. In the same chapter Mr. Grady calls attention to the answer to Mr. Webster by Mr. Calhoun, and to "the complete overthrow of his (Webster's) political doctrines, by quoting his own former utterances (always scrupulously ignored and excluded by northern compilers of school readers, speakers, union text-books, etc.)." and adds a quotation from an address delivered long after this debate at Capon Springs, Va^ There, in June, 1851, Mr. Webster said: " I have not hesitated to say, and I repeat, that, if the northern States refuse, willfully and deliberately, to carry into effect that part of the constitution which respects the restoration of fugitive slaves, and Congress provide no remedy, the South would no longer be bound to observe the compact. A bargain cannot be broken on one side, and still bind the other side." Here Mr. Web- ster seems to recognize very clearly the fact that the several States are distinct political entities, and the further that the constitution is the written and formal embodiment of the compact, or "bargain," which they not "the people of the United States in the aggregate," made with each other in order to enter into "a more perfect union." He also admits, in plain terms, that a State may withdraw from the union when the constitution has been violated. He might have said with equal propriety that the uniform abuse of a power, conferred upon the general government by the constitution to the detriment of any of the States is in itself a violation of the whole spirit, the in- tention, of the federal compact.
It was not the purpose of this brief review to follow Mr. (irady