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is only a few years ago, since the manufacturing and labouring classes of this country wanted employment and bread, and Demagogues told them to seek relief in parliamentary reform. In Ireland there is equal distress, and agitators tell the people that what they want is Catholic Emancipation. Both are untrue. The people in both instances wanted employment and bread; and wrought upon in their distress by designing men, they fiercely attributed their distresses to causes, the removal of which would only perpetuate them. The difference has been that, in one instance, you put the agitators down even with bloodshedding, in the other, you have connived at, if not secretly supported them. But, Sir, I see in Catholic Emancipation nothing whatever proposed in favour of the mass of the Irish community, that brave, that generous, that long-suffering class, who have been alike the dupes of the mere politicians in both countries. On the contrary, I see a proposition, unblushingly made, to rob the cottage of its long exercised privilege, in order to add new splendour to the Catholic coronet; and this, forsooth, is to calm the country at present, and ensure its future tranquillity. Turning, then, from the consideration of Ireland, where the sacrifice of Protestantism would be a curse instead of a remedy, let us see what is the nature of the proposition, and what would be its effects, as it regards the empire at large. It amounts, Sir, to this,-an inroad on the Constitution of the country, and a preparatory movement towards its final destruction. The moral qualification, now termed
disabilities,' is, it seems to be sacrificed. And yet lawyers and statesmen without number, tell us this is in perfect accordance with the spirit of the Constitution. Our political radicals seek to do away with the pecuniary qualification; our religious radicals, for such they are, whatever they denominate themselves, wish to destroy the moral one. They allege that the superior light and information which have dawned upon the Romish faith have changed its character and made it a fitting alliance for a Protestant King and Parliament. But has not the same amelioration been asserted, and far more truly, regarding the unrepresented part of the British community, and yet they were dispersed and put down ; their Agitators were never listened to; they were, on the contrary, forcibly apprehended, tried, and punished. But, Sir, the Popish Agitators were tolerated in infinitely more seditious practices, if not actually encouraged by those who had the power to put them down, in order, as many think, thereby to make out a case for putting down the Constitution. The time is come, we are told, when the question must be adjusted. Sir, the adjustment of a disputed question generally terminates in some mutual concessions, some reciprocal advantages : but here the reciprocity is clearly all on one side. Will the authors of the measure point out the equivalents actually given in the Bill before the House? There are none, unless their promises and professions may be regarded as such, which some of us have learned now to estimate at their just value. The Protestant faith surrenders every thing--receives nothing. Even the securities, so much talked of, vanish at last into mere shadows. The measure, we are told, is satisfactory:but to whom? To the most zealous and devoted of the adherents of the Popish cause, in all the pride of its growing demands and insatiable pretensions: and it is moreover accepted as the certain presage of better things to come. But securities! The Lord-lieutenancy, an office of pageantry, is, it seems, to be continued Protestant. But what Protestant cares an iota about that, surrounded as the individual holding it will certainly be by Popish advisers. The office of Lord Chancellor is similarly reserved ; but a Roman Catholic may be first Lord of the Treasury, exercising, therefore, far greater patronage. The palace of the King, as a learned Lord expresses it, must, it appears, still remain Protestant; but some bigoted devotee of Rome may conquer his way to the Royal Presence, be his Prime Minister, and become • Viceroy over him.'- But, Sir, this measure does not merely affect the feelings and the character,--I say it touches the title of the King! The privileges of Protestantism, as bitherto maintained, constitute the Royal Title-Deeds of his august family, that which became the actual transfer of the estate which he holds in Parliament and in the country Other reasons, powerful as I think in themselves, and far more important in reference to their results, press for utterance. But I will not trespass on the patience of the House by adducing them. I would rather recal to its memory those which have been delivered by the Right Honourable Secretary of State, accompanied by the consequences, with which he so often and so ably connected them-delivered, I say, from his place, which he still keeps, I regret to add, much more tenaciously than his principles, Those, however, have not lost their weight in the country, and he has now the hard task of answering them, of answering them himself. No talents inferior to his own, I speak it sincerely, would be competent to such a task. He can, however, like Hudibras, · Confute, change sides, and still confute;' and his new friends assure him that this is the true, dignified, consistent, and patriotic course. But, if I wave any further arguments on this important subject, I will nevertheless make a solitary remark on the extraordinary nature of those reasonings which are urged in defence and support of the present fatal measure. As those arguments evidently spring from the most opposite views and motives, so are they of the most contradictory nature. Yet still they are all allowed to carry weight, though, if they were pressed from one and the same quarter, they would plainly balance and negative each other. It is thus that, in this most extraordinary argument, contradiction itself is allowed to emulate demonstration. Thus, one party asserts, and is heard and believed, that Popery has lost its power,-that it has become quite nerveless, despicable, and inert, and may, therefore, be trusted. Another, on the contrary, says, that its adherents are now so formidable in numbers, and so overwhelming in power, that its claims must be yielded. They, too, have full credit for their assertions. One maintains that the spirit of Popery is changed and ameliorated; another, and one far more likely to understand the subject, for it is composed of its adherents, that it is unchanged and unchangeable. One, that the conduct of its professors is so excellent, peaceable, and loyal, that they merit to be admitted into power : another, that they are so united, turbulent, and factious, that it is unsafe to keep them out; and both opinions also are gospel! One assures us that the admission of Popery into the citadel of the Constitution will strengthen the established church; another (and it is far stronger than it chooses to avow itself at present) hopes that such admission will lead to that union with other bodies unfriendly to it, which will effect its final downfall. One would think, I say, that arguments so opposite would neutralize each other. But no ! so long as they are urged from different mouths, they are all held irrefragable. In this general attack, the arrows may be shot from different, and indeed opposite, quarters, but while they are all aimed at one central mark, Protestantism,—they are the more certain to take effect and bring down their victim, the more varied the positions from whence they are discharged, Aye, but we are now told that there was previously a divided cabinet on this particular measure, and that it could not, therefore, be carried. Never was there so superficial an excuse put forth. Divided cabinet !—Who were they that caused the division in the preceding cabinet but those who now complain of it, and who, as it now appears, will suffer none to serve their King or country, but such as approve their altered plans, and change at the word of command? And is it for the present Ministers to talk to us about the Government being previously divided upon this question as the only previous obstacle to its adjustment; those who, less than two short years ago, were so strictly and conscientiously devoted to the cause for which I now humbly contend, as to refuse to serve with one who was even favourable to Emancipation, and who therefore deserted the King in a body, painful as it was no doubt to them, rather than do so. But, Sir, are all the long and laboured explanations by which this fact is attempted to be concealed or evaded worth a straw ? One thing, Sir, I cannot but deeply regret, as the inevitable consequence of these strange changes, however they may terminate, namely, the degradation of the character of public men in the estimation of the people of England. Nothing can equal the astonishment with which these sudden changes have been regarded, but the disgust they have occasioned; nay, even where they have been hailed as accessions of strength, they have, nevertheless, been accompanied by feelings of secret contempt. Much has been said as to the question having been so long before the people of England as to render delay unnecessary; bad it been a much shorter time before the consideration of the present Ministers when they rejected it? So sudden, total, and unanimous a change in a matter so long considered seems not a little singular and suspicious. These simultaneous conversions are really disgusting, - they argue not so much a change of principle, as a total want of principle. I am perhaps presenting principles and feelings rather than arguments to this house. I meant, I promised, so to do when I was sent hither, and I bave kept and mean to keep my word. I know how dear this sacred, this deserted cause is to the hearts and to the understandings of Englishmen. The principle may be indeed weak in this house, but abroad it marches in more than all its wonted
might, headed, in spite of the aspersions of its enemies, by the intelligence, the religion, the loyalty of the country; and if the honest zeal, and even the cherished prejudices of the people swell its train, thank God for the accession. Nay, Sir, if poverty, whose intermeddling with this question we have again heard insultingly rebuked this night, adds its affecting suffrages to the cause of religion and of God, I glory in its alliance. Poverty nothing to do with this religious question !'-it has as much to do with it as have any of us who are deliberating concerning it; it has more; its religion is its all! But, Sir, it is an united, it is an universal cause ! Here, Sir, that cause may be, like those wasting tapers, melting away; there it burns inextinguishably. It lives abroad, though this House may be now preparing its grave! To their representatives, the people of England, comınitted their dearest birthright, the Protestant Constitution. They have not deserted it, whoever have. If it must perish then, I call God to witness, that the people are guiltless? Their voices are heard in their numerous and earnest petitions, calling aloud, as it were, for water to wash their hands from the stain of all participation in this foul transaction ! But the last and most important consideration I shall preseut to this House affects its competency to entertain this question. This House, I say, has no right to proceed in this work of counter-revolution—no right, I say, to proceed without consulting the people. In preceding elections the question has, by common consent, been kept from their particular consideration, since to have mentioned it would have been stigmatized the No-Popery' cry; and, moreover, they confided, in this particular, in the express declarations of his Majesty's Government, and determined their choice, therefore, by other grounds of political or local preference. The Protestant constitution, now endangered, was first established in a Convention, called for that special purpose ; and without as full an appeal, and without equal formality, the people have no right to be robbed of it. I am fully aware of the legal fiction that Parliament is omnipotent, but it is nevertheless a fiction. The Parliament is neither called to, nor competent to, alter the original frame-work, if I may so speak, of the Constitution. Sup posing, for instance, this House, in conjunction with the other branches of the Legislature, were to enact that our seats should be perpetual, and not only for life, but hereditary.- Where is the man that will assert that we have a right or a power given us to legislate? Suppose we were to agree to abolish the Representative System altogether, or take away Trial by Jury? I repeat the question, Where is the man that dares assert that the power of Parliament extends thus far ? Where are the patriots, who are the lawyers who challenge for us this right? But as to the Protestant character of the Constitution, it is certain that our powers to change this in any degree are still more clearly and intentionally limited. We take no oaths, make no declaration, not to abrogate Trial by Jury; none not to alter, suspend, or destroy the Representative System. But we do take oaths, we do make declaration, not to allow Popery an entrance into the Legislature. My oath-(a laugh from the Opposition)-I hear a laugh : that laugh at the very mention of an vath is the just interpretation of the value of the security which the advocates of the measure now propose. My oath has been too lately taken to be forgotten, however that of others may be. Under these circumstances, neither the established Constitution of the country, nor the oaths and declarations taken by us, permit us to assume the right which is now so eagerly sought to be exercised, namely, the right of throwing open the doors of this House to the admission of Popery, to the scandal, disgrace, and danger of the Protestant Establishment in Church and State. Sir, we have no lawful power for doing this; the people of England sent us not bither for any such purpose ;—they interdicted us by solemn oaths and declarations froin daring to attempt such a course. I am persuaded they will resent it deeply and permanently if we proceed. Let the House, then, beware! Sir, I have but a word more-I should be sorry if it went abroad that I am hostile to the Roman Catholics. I respect the talents, I revere the virtues, I know the courage, of my Roman Catholic fellow-subjects ; and I would not injure the humblest individual amongst them. Such, Sir, are my feelings, and I am sure they are those of the steadfast and conscientious advocates of the Protestant Constitution.”
This Speech, of which we are only able to insert a part, but which we trust many of our readers will procure for themselves, produced a great impression, The debate was resumed on the following day, when the second reading was carried by a majority of 180; the votes being for the measure 353, and against it 173.
The measure, therefore, as far as relates to the lower house, must be considered as practically carried. An overwhelming mass of petitions has indeed been presented against it, and every night adds considerably to the number; but amidst other painful symptoms, we have observed with deep regret a disposition to undervalue this legitimate expression of public opinion, and to persuade the House, that after all, the sense of the country is in favour of that very measure which five to one of the petitions oppose.
Many of these petitions have appeared in print, and some have been forwarded to us for insertion; we regret that our scanty limits prevent their appearance, especially as we cordially coincide in their prayer, and highly approve of the arguments and reasonings they contain. There is however another numerous class of publications to which we must briefly advert, and which deserves serious attention. The first of these we would notice is The Rev. G. S. Faber's Four Letters on Catholic Emancipation. These Letters enter upon both the religious and political part of the question, and contain, in narrow compass, strong arguments against the projected measure. Mr F. remarks in his first Letter
“So far as I can perceive, all the arguments in favour of granting political power to the Romanists finally resolve themselves into three-The argument from right; . The argument from expediency; and, The argument from terror.
“The argument from right is, of course, beneath criticism : for though, in a well-ordered polity, every individual has a right to protection in life, limb, and property; no individual possesses any abstract right to the possession of political power. • “The argument from expediency involves, in its very nature, a total disregard to moral honesty—if such moral honesty stand in the way of fancied convenience.
“ The argument from terror avowedly reposes upon a disgraceful confession of the most degrading moral cowardice.
“ Throwing then aside the palpable folly of the argument from right, we may briefly say, that the argument from expediency disregards the providence of God, while the argument from terror distrusts his protection. : “ It will be asked, how I give the character of religion to the question now before us? I do it in the following very simple manner. . “ Every member of our two Houses of Parliament, previous to his admission, solemnly and sincerely, in the presence of God, and in the plain and ordinary sense of the words, without any evasion or equivocation, or mental reservation whatsoever, professes, and testifies, and declares, that Popery is idolatry, and consequently that Papists are idolaters.
“ Hence, every Member now sitting in each House has actually, and (as he professes at least) with honest conviction of its truth, made such declaration.
“This being the case, it is abundantly clear, that every individual so circumstanced, who votes for a national union with the Romanists, votes for a national union with those whom he himself has, in the presence of Almighty God, voluntarily declared to be idolaters : that is to say, every such individual who votes to that effect votes for the intimate, and perfect, and national, and legalized engraftation of declared idolatry upon what hitherto we less-enlightened mortals have fondly deemed our exclusively Protestant Constitution. : “Possibly it will be said, by some honorary member of all religions, that Popery is not idolatry. • “If so, what are we to think of the common honesty of those Lords and Commoners, who first declare, in the presence of God, their firm conviction and belief that Popery is idolatry; and then deliberately proceed to vote for a national union with the identical system which they themselves, absolutely their own bodily selves, have thus stigmatized ? They are inevitably driven to the following very plain alternative.
“If they really meant what they said, when, in the presence of God, they declared Popery to be idolatry; how tremendous must be the daring impiety of insulting God to his face, by voting for a national union with a system which they themselves have thus delineated !
“ If, on the other hand, they believed not a syllable of what, professedly as in the presence of God, they have declared; what a profligate disregard of truth, what a total contempt of all honesty and decency, what a horrible predetermination of deliberate and corrupt perjury in its very worst and most atrocious form, will then be exhibited by these Right-Honourable and Honourable individuals !
“ My Fellow-Countrymen, judge honestly and dispassionately for yourselves. For my own part as an honest and somewhat fearless man in the privacy of domestic life, I scruple not to proclaim aloud, that I can hardly conceive conduct more utterly insulting and provoking to the Almighty, than an open and avowed disregard of his behests, because some certain of our Senators happen to be terrified by the Irish Romanists; and because they deem, in the profundity of their secular folly, the Constitutional engraftation of what they themselves in God's presence have declared to be idolatry, a very masterpiece of political wisdom. That admirable and venerable and consistant man, Lord Eldon, is reported to have said, in his place, that when the Romanists are admitted to power, from that day the sun of England is set for ever. If I agree not with him, I must disbelieve the Bible. National guilt can only be punished in this world : and what national guilt can be more offensive to God, than an union with what, in his own holy presence, has been unanimously declared, by our Senators themselves, to be superstition and idolatry ?”
We regret that here our extracts from Mr. F. must close. His whole argument however is most ably conducted, and lies in very narrow compass.
The next publication we would notice is Protestant Securities considered, in which the insufficiency of all Securities hitherto offered to the consideration of Parliament is set forth, and new Securities proposed, by the Rev. Gilbert Chesnutt, B. A. The Author observes
1. No efficient security to be found in the imposition of Oaths and Declarations.
Whoever has considered the want of candour and fairness, the metaphysical subtleties and scholastic niceties displayed by the Professors of Maynooth, in their late examination before the Committee of the House of Commons, and generally in the recent writings of Roman Catholics, cannot but be convinced that no declaration can be framed which shall be proof against the false colourings, the utter disregard for truth and reason, the craft, subtleties, refinements and mendaciousness of the Butlers, the Lingards, and the Doyles of the Church of Rome.
2. No efficient security to be found in the exercise by the King's Government of a Veto on the appointment of Roman Catholic bishops; or in granting pensions by Government to the Roman Catholic priests of Ireland.
3. No efficient security to be found in merely excluding Roman Catholic members of the Legislature from the privilege of voting on certain Acts of Parliament (about thirty-seven more immediately connected with the Established Church.
He then proposes
First SECURITY. The government of, and right of legislating for, the Church as by law established, and the doctrines, worship, rights, dignities, and revenues thereof, to be exercised solely by the bishops and clergy of the said Church lawfully assembled in convocation, all power, right, or authority touching the same, to be renounced by Parliament; the universities, grammar-schools, and other endowments for purposes of education and piety, to be made by law parts and parcels of the Established Church, and as such to be placed under the sole jurisdiction of the ecclesiastical courts, and ...... convocation ...... the said bishops and clergy to have a controul over ecclesiastical patronage in certain cases; the convocations of the different provinces to be united in one assembly, to be called the Convocation of .... the united Church of England and Ireland, and to be assembled at certain stated periods of time.
SECOND SECURITY. The laws excluding Papists, and those married to Papists, from the Throne of these realms, to be solemnly renewed and further guarded ; Papists to be excluded from offices about the king's person and in his court, and from all high offices of trust and administration; and further, a provision to be made for the exercise in certain cases of the royal prerogatives in matters ecclesiastical ; and certain oaths to be imposed for the effectual fulfilment of the above objects.
Third SECURITY. Al correspondence between the subjects of these realms and the Papal court to be regulated by a commission of Protestants; and all claims upon property which once belonged to the Roman Catholic Church in Ireland to be solemnly renounced.
Fourth Security. The system of the elective franchise in Ireland to be revised.
FJFTH SECURITY. AU persons designed for holy orders in the Roman Catholic Church within these realms to be educated in England, under the controul and inspection of Government. All monastic institutions, as also certain religious