Wednesday, May 15, 2013

"and the Government has no right to disarm them"

"...Resolved, That while the Constitution of the United States was ordained and established by the people, "in order to form a perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquillity, provide for the common defence, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty," and contains ample provisions for the protection of the life, liberty, and property of every citizen, the dearest constitutional rights of the people of Kansas have been fraudulently and violently taken from them:

   "Their Territory has been invaded by an armed force; "Spurious and pretended legislative, judicial and executive oflicers have been set over them, by whose usurped authority, sustained by the military power of the Government, tyrannical and unconstitutional laws have been enacted and enforced;
   "The right of the people to keep and bear arms has been infringed; test oaths of an extraordinary and entangling nature have been imposed as a condition of exercising the right of suffrage and holding office;
   "The right of an accused person to a speedy and public trial by an impartial jury has been denied;
   "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, has been violated;
   "They have been deprived of life, liberty, and property, without due process of law;
   "Freedom of speech and of the press has been abridged; . . . ."

". . . if the majority of the people of Kansas had wanted peace, [it is then "a majority" who will not have peace on his terms,] they could have had it, and the way to get it was for the settlers to frown down all agitation growing out of difference of opinion about their local institutions; [that is, sit quiet, and let Slavery be introduced without opposition or remonstrance;] that the affair at Lawrence had given him great anxiety, and the outrages there were not done by authority; [save of that "civil power," and of those "courts" to which the President would send the victims for redress;] that he admitted mistakes had been made, as is evident in his removing SHANNON, but an impartial man has now gone out, who will see justice done to both parties; [and for trying so to do will receive such treatment from the President, that in six months or less he will be driven to resign in sheer despair of doing any good against the combined hostility of Pro-Slavery ruffianism in the Territory, and Pro-Slavery politics at Washington;] that the people have a constitutional right to bear arms, and the Government has no right to disarm them; [and so the Southern gangs of marauders must be allowed to keep the weapons they have used in a savage and aggressive warfare, and only Free State "rebels" be deprived of arms employed in self-defence;] and, to crown all, that the civil power of the Territory, [set up by fraud and lawless force, without a shadow of right, and scarcely a shadow of legality,] must be maintained, and no change in the policy of the Administration, [the policy of upholding with bayonets a government based on audacious usurpation,] is to be expected, of course. Nobody who knows the vassalage of the Administration to the Slave-Power ever did expect its policy to change, unless from bad to worse. What hope has Freedom from an Administration created and controlled by Slavery? We have now, it is true, another President, but no reason, therefore, to anticipate a better policy; for he, too, like his predecessor, is a creature of the Slave-Power, and will not be permitted, even if he desires, to thwart its purposes. His Inaugural Address has indeed some fair-seeming words about "Popular Sovereignty;" declaring that
   "It is the imperative and indispensable duty of the Government of the United States to secure to every resident inhabitant the free and independent expression of his opinion by his vote. This sacred right of each individual must be preserved. This being accomplished, nothing can be fairer than to leave the People of a Territory free from all foreign interference to decide their own destiny for themselves, subjectionly to the Constitution of the United States."
   "But we hear of no measure which he has taken to make good his words, nor did we ever suppose he would take any such. That complete embodiment of "foreign interference," the Border Ruffian Government, he recognizes as legal and rightful, and its enactments he treats as binding laws. The infamous LECOMPTE, whom even PIERCE attempted to remove, still holds the judicial seat which he has prostituted to the aid of usurpation and the abetting of open crime. Murderers and robbers still retain important oflices in the Territory, and, under the shadow of Executive favor, plot fresh outrages upon its inhabitants. Everything indicates that Slavery still sits in the Executive, though in the person of another minister of its will..."


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