Page:Remedy by State Interposition, or Nullification.djvu/4

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CHANCELLOR HARPER'S SPEECH


It has generally been thought, and fitly, that it is inconsistent with the decorum which ought to belong to the character of a Judge,to be active in party politics. But I cannot regard the subjects now before us as matters of party politics. The interests of the whole state to which my services are due, and still greater interests, are involved. A Judge has the feelings and interests of a man and a citizen. It is not within the range of probability that I shall ever be called to actor decide officially on any of the topics which are now canvassed, and I cannot think it indecorous that I should endeavour to explain and enforce opinions, which I had formed and avowed long before I was invested with my present character. I am the more encouraged to do so, as I am fully persuaded, that most of the differences of opinion which exist among the citizens of this state, (I mean those whose opinions we should respect or value) have arisen, as most human differences do arise, from mutual misconception. I believe that the objects of all are the same, and that when the opinions off those with whom I agree are fully understood, the whole state will be found cordially and harmoniously co-operating in the pursuit of those objects.

The topics before us are the evil and the remedy—what the remedy shall be, and how and when it shall be applied. On the subject of the oppression which the south suffers from the legislation of the General Government, I shall say but little. This is a subject on which we are all agreed, (even those who exclaim most strongly against the danger of the measures we contemplate to rid ourselves of this oppression,) and the details which would be necessary to a Thorough investigation of it are hardly suited to a popular assembly. I shall only beg leave to present a few general and as it seems to me plain and obvious views. Even the author of a pamphlet which has been lately written and which is circulated fir the ostensible purpose of allaying the excitement which exists in the state and persuading us that the evils we suffer are not so great but that we ought to submit to them, and which therefore naturally extenuates as much as fairness will allow, the burdens under which we labour, supposes that South Carolina pays half a million annually for the purpose of protecting manufactures alone. He supposes however that the people of the manufacturing states are equally burdened in proportion to their consumption of imported and protected articles: choosing to leave out of view, that whatever their burdens may be, by their