It behooves those in authority to ponder well before they take a step that may recoil upon their own heads. A people goaded on to desperation may turn and smite their persecutors. We do not wish to be understood as counseling armed resistance to law. Our voice shall ever be raised for peace. We advise our people to bear and forbear, be calm and patient under all circumstances, but be prepared. The laws of your State guarantee to you the right to bear arms in self defense. No power upon earth can gainsay this right. Self-preservation is the first law of nature.
While we believe the act organizing a State Guard is in violation of the plainest provisions of the Constitution, we do not propose to offer any resistance to its execution. But we will say that he who believes that our people will stand quietly by and see here in our midst a repetition of the outrages which have been committed in Arkansas, must be a fool or insane.
"Resistance to tyrants is obedience to God," is a maxim just as true to-day as it was when our fathers resisted British oppression. We still have that power of resistance left as, and in defense of our live and property it will crush the faction of unscrupulous men who rule our State between the upper and nether mill-stone of its power. Then let that power which rests its broad base on two millions of people be our shield and sword.