Excerpt from Principles, Acts, and Utterances, of John C. Calhoun, Promotive of the True Union of the States
Cruelest public opinion has placed under ban some of these principles and their advocates, and there was never a stronger obligation on universities to teach the truths of republican liberty or "the art of applying them" to practical government. Conscious that I undertake a difficult task, but emboldened by the assurance of President Harper that this university is for the investigation of truth and challenges the boldest discussion, I set myself to the task of demonstrating that John C. Calhoun, in conviction, creed and conduct, was a true and devoted friend of the Union of our fathers, and that his policy and principles, adopted in public opinion and applied in practice, in executive, legislative, and judicial departments of the government, would be the best guarantee of constitutional liberty, of the permanence of our complex and well-guarded systems, and of the peace and happiness of the people. His political course, instead of being hostile to the Union, was the best auxiliary and surest promoter of its original end and purpose, and its integrity was the paramount object of his ambition and efforts.
Let us ascertain the meaning of terms. A clear definition will rid discussion of much that is irrelevant and confusing. Some make the Union a fetish, an idol, and pæans to its glory, cries of "Union, Union, the glorious Union," are substitutes for arguments and facts, and become spells of the enchantress to exorcise demons. Some habitually speak of it as a personality, or, in itself, a self-existing government, make a profession of attachment the shibboleth for determining loyalty and a cover or excuse for any injustice or wrong.
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