Digital Library of Georgia Logo
GALILEO Logo

Georgia republican & state intelligencer. (Savannah, Ga.) 1802-1805, September 11, 1802, Image 4

Below is the OCR text representation for this newspapers page.

SPE E C H OJ Sir Francis Burdett, in th: House Commons, April i on the motion for an enquiry into ike conduct of Mr . Pitt's Admit ii fir at ion. (Concluded from cur loft') Sir, v e have hea r d much of the blefiings cf of our happy constitution, but look at the real firuatiou of the country : five hundred and fifty millions of debt, barracks and bai tiles, the habeas corpus zCt deftroyed ; for the frequency, long continuance and facility or its suspension, has totally annihilated the the confidence of the fubjtft ; an army offpies ; and informers, an inquisition of property, an inqtiifition of political opinion, a lhackled and corrupted press, a gagg ed and beggared people, pensioned jufticcs,eventuallyfalariedjudges,vague laws, threatened Julies, an executive magistrate ret accountable, a degraded ariflocracy a confid ing parliament, and irresponsibility indemnifi ed mini Iters. What is their there in this fyf tc n lb admirable to recompense the people ol England for the immense facrifue they are called upon daily and hourly to make lor its iupport : Sir the situation of this country is deplorable enough, but i( we turn our eyc3 to Ireland, we fhail find the defponfin complete there, cf which the foundations, deep and broad, are laid here. Painful is the recital of the woeful mea fnres purified by the ministers in Ireland, thev are too important to be puffed over, or to be li ; -fitly treated on, Thev mud be fui ly exposed to the view of this horde, who, I am forrv to fay, are wholly ignorant of the tranhideous that have taken place in that ili fated country, or what is worse, have receiv ed a fitlse account of them, propagated with uncommon affiduky by ministers and their a;.rots. To remove this prejudice, and to enable the houfc t> form an opinion of the conduct of miniflers t will be neceflary to take ground •<* far back as the caule which gave rile to thele events. At the conclusion of the American war, (a war undertaken .precisely on the fame prin ciples as that ngainic France) out of twelve thou find men, composing the Handing army of Ireland, nine thou!and were trcnlporteri aero Is the Atlantic, to fight the battles of En Hand in America —and Ireland, left to lurfeif, (uchibitted the grand fped.it le of a volunteer armv, ‘oft paid, ftk clothed, lelf armed, not subj ft to martial law ; a debat in'* irmv chufing its own ortkers, canvassing public me.dures, iubmitcing to no other ar ticles of war than public opinion, ro no othei mutiny bill than private honor. * Then, too, France threatened invasion, but received no encouragement, bee aide the people, though ma!-treafed, Hoped the time of their delive rance was at hand, and the honest parliament, furh as they believed then far, would redreft their grievances, which were listened to with attention and difeufied with temper and mo deration. There were no laws palled to pre vent public meetings, or throw obstacles in the way of petitions, the habeas corpus aft v/as not iu!pended—there were no burnings ranes, or maftaerts : military tribunals did not usurp the place of courts of justice Iree quarters were unheard of— tortures were unknown —there were no indemnity bills. These were the reasons why France, if flit ever entertained an idea of a defeent on Ire land, had not the temerity to put it into ex ecution, well knowing that a nation lo de fended by citizen loldiers was invincible, and that and I fee reditu re and shame mud have attend ed the undertaking. And that war ended without any iuch attempt having been made by France, and mat parliament ciofed its la bors, after having effefted tne fettiemc.nt of jyS 3. of which we have lately heard so much Avery ihorc time, however, had elapsed before the irifh people perceived the owners of the reprefentutions, for it was then that; private property were the only gainers, and ilut the narion had only exchanged the di rect legalized controul of the Engiifh parli ament exercised at a trifling charge, for the in direst management of the Bntiifi mini Her, worked at an enormous coll—and that the fvftem, always radically bad, was rendered ft ill more vicious, by holding out a greater temptation to the parliament, from the in creaifd wages of corruption to betray the in terest of Ireland, which have unfortunately, from a narrow short lighted policy been al ways thought incompatible with the interefls of this country. The people were quickly convinced by the multiplication of places, the appointment of of monopolist natives to fill them, the formation of a national debt, the cilablifhmcnt of a national bank, which at fidl pleased the vanity of the ineonfiderate,; were in faft, (lores gathered from the people, and Event into the granaries of the Engiiih miniller, to be attributed by the hands of the factor, known by the name of secretary to a lord-lieutenant; which ffipplies, so to be 1 diflributed, were so abundant, that the price j of a feat for one eleftion only, rose from eight hundred to two thoufmd pounds * * * * j and in the * * * * from lit tle or nothing to three, four and five thouf an ft pounds. The people at fir ft gratified by the found of an independent parliament, tound to their cost it was efthem the parliament was inde- Dendent, and wholly dependent upon the will jf the Britifti cabinet, Thus deluded the people of Ireland, taught by the eloquence of the late minister, were convinced of the ibfolute neceftky of reform ; and, as I have been told, and to the honor of thole perlcns be it spoken, many of the proprietors of bo roughs were convinced of that necessity, and offered voluntarily to reiinquifh their uncon stitutional and usurped power. But the right honorable gentleman having, in the mean time, become prime miniller of England, ftrengrhened by troops returned from Ame rica, and iupported a majority of the own ers of the re prefer.tation, whole fortunes and whose families were made by this system, re filled every n ovement towards that reform to which fie before led the way. Bur, though the ripht honorable gentleman had chan .ed his sentiments with his fitunion; though he .. v had fullered his filtered to extinguish his prin ciples ; though he might have been very anx ious to throw the veil of oblivion over the fpeechescf the thatched houie orator; those foeeches, replete with common fen ft* 6c truth, • 1 1 m * had made too deep an impreihon to be eafiiy eificed. On the contrary, the mo e rapid were his {lndies, the more deeply were his for mer sentiments engraved on the minds of the people, whom every day’s experience con firmed more and mo;e in the necefTuy of re form j towards the attainment of which, desi rable and considerable progrds liafi been made, when it was fu.iden.ly arrested by those who, having monopoliled the pow r of t!v* country, were agafiut every ipecics of real ft who! do me reform. Though the prourefs of reform was thus arrested, the principle was never for a moment abandoned. And in this (late of corruption on the part of the Britilli minister ; of barefaced, unbiufhing venality on the part of the Irish ; and of anx ious hooe and txoeftation on the part cf the <. . . , 4 people, did things remain from the year 1783, tiii the year 1791, when the people deter mined to use every’exertion to obtain a fair representation, which the right honorable gentleman had told them ought to be the express image of the people. To efFeft this purpose, it was necessary to embrace every dtfeription of persons, and to avoid all religious prejudices, the rock on which re form had hitherto fplie. To this end, fome of the moil enlightened and ftrenous advo cates ol reform, com poled a tell, conceived in the following terms : “In the awful presence of God, I declare, that I will, as far as in me lies, endeavor to promote a brotherhood of affection and union a ‘non gil Irish men of every religiqus perfu a li on ; and that I will persevere in my endea vors to procure a full, equal and adequate re prefen tat ion of all the people of Ireland in t Thus the work of reconciliation and union was in rapid progreis. Many societies of the coalefccd fefts, better kno.vn by the name of United Irish men, and every thing wore an afpeft favorable to peace, mutual affeftion ft reform. The parliament having itfftf, in *93, taken up the iubjeCt, and seemed to evince so much fairnefs in the entertainment of it, that no fewer than eleven committees of the houfc of commons fit in the fefiion of that year, for the purpose of taking t *e state of the representation into comiueration. These were ala r iTi 1n g ni eu 1 l ires ; Irdhmen united were not to be endured, and cue right honorable gentleman who had ftudicd reform, only wun a view oi zcic nioic crnc-i* cious mode of counterafting it, here took his (land, threw down the gauntlet of defi ance to the Irish people, and commanded the independent parliament to pals, not a resolu tion for reform, but the notorious conven tion bill, the object of which was to quaih the united fociceties, and to prevent all political meetings. From this time the meetings which hud hitherto been hela open ly,” were convened privately —became nume rous in pjcportion to the iueans taken toob ftruct them, and perseveringly maintained their orincinles cf union and reform. At -1 * . . . tempts at reform without union, v/oula no: have alarmed. Religious bigotry would have eafilyTruftrated them. It was the union of Irifhmcn that struck terror to theloul of mi nillers—becaufe, by thedilunion of the pro testant; the Catholic, and the Prefbytcrian, they are enabled to hold Ireland in a state ot abjeft submission. Recourle was therefore had to the disunion of the fefts, and the pa pering and racking fyftcm was adopted, which expelled from their habtations tnoulands of families, by a process the moft atrocious. A paper was painted against the doors of the Ca tholics, commanding the inhabitants to quit | in live or ten days, and to proceed to the pro- j vince of Ccnnaught, or they lhould be sent to heiJ. These mandates not being at nifi. complied with, the who had ifiued rherri repaired to the houses of the unfortu nate Catholics, ousted the whole family, and racked and fee lire to the miferablc hovel ft its contents. Such tranfaftions could not fail to attract notice—many of the authors of them were committed to prison, his majeftyk attorney general was lent to the theatre where these tragedies had been acted, to p’*ofecute the offenders who were all acquitted except one, and he was pardoned. After thi., which served as a manifeft to every agent ct govern ment—after fitch a pardon it is not to be wondered at, if those Catholic?, who had not yet been papered and racked, flaould, dreading a repetition of the fame lyftem, and having no protection from law, proceed to deprive the Orangemen,who were the authors ‘of these proceedings, of their arms, tf.em • Fives having been kept disarmed. ft his ‘proceeding answered the purpose ot mini fieri j— ic afforded opportunity of disuniting Irish- I men of different perfuahons ; or protecting | tone feet, and liming it up to take vengeance] lon the other. But as the ordinary forms ol law were tedious and uncertain, they deter mined to fiirm off the load of ilatutes, and employed an army, the officers of wmch erect ed a military tribunal, where they (at, tneo, fen ten ce-.i and condemned, not a lew indivi duals only, but whole tribes whom they hur ried on board of tenders. And tnc!e afts w-re not only indemnified, but an aft was palled, in adciitition to their former afts, em power! n \ magi ft rates to commit, according to layv, aftsof a similar nature, arid by the operation of this law, which was not a dead letter, was the great body cf an unarmed p ople put out of the prorrftion of civd law, and consigned to the mercy of an army. Mere the honorable baronet went at fome length irito t!ie hlftory of the Eventies prac tifed in Ireland, as means to bring about the the union. He then proceeded as follows : Sir, I have gone so much into thus detail, because it has been after ted, tbit IriOi union and reform were generated by the french re volution ; that the principle was al-rcnch principle, a rew doctrine created by the drench war. But falls speak for th.emielves, andeve-y faft (peaks the reverie of this aiier rion. The neceftity of reform was (eit by the Iriih people during the American war. I he motives of reform were sh engthened by reasoning and eloquence of the r ight hono rable gentleman himfeif before he became minister, and by the letter of the duke of Richmond before he was appointed mailer general of the ordinance, to colonel Sherman ch firman of the celebrated meeting of the i rifh volunteers a: Dungannon, convened for express purpose cf reform. The question was again difeufifsd in the house of commons itfelf, and occupied the attention of all Ire land ten years before the French Revolution, and what produced it ? The very constitution of that parliament, its match ids veuaiicy and cornJDtion—its reufiance to the moderate, just demands of the people. These were the reasons. growing l ont of the fyfiern a nr! orci?i nization itfelf, that imp relied on the minds of the people of Ireland the absolute n -eceflitv of reform. And who can now deny those rea sons to have been just ? Their house of com mons has proved to have been private pro perty ;it has been paid for, bought and fold —and the bills for the pure hale money now lie on your table. But the right honorable gentle nan himfeif saw the necdlity of reform ing this corrupt and incompetent parliament. The people of Ireland and the minister only differed as to the species of reform. They were of opinion that a native resident parlia- j men:,having the fame feelings and the fame! interest with the people, and not reprefendng their own private property —they were ofopi- j nion tills was the true charafter o( a conftitu ciona! house of commons. But the right honorable gentleman for merly of the sane opinion, was now of opi nion, that a foreign parliament, composed of men, between whom and the people there ex ile ed no sympathy, no indentlty of ignorant of their wifties, wants and character —receiving information of that people, through the medium of those very persons whom he reprcfe.nted as fofuli of prejudice, local animosity, heat and pa then, as not to be fit to govern Ireland. This is the species of reform, according to the right honorable gentleman’s opinion, now best iuired so the people of that country. And to drecl* this species of reform, projefted by him at the time of the regency, has he waded through oceans of blood. Thus then have miniflers, though they they have failed in their foreign objects, been far from being altogether untucccfsful. Though they failed in their atremptto conquer France, they hvc made a fhameful conquest of the rights and liberties of England. They have bought the reprefcnratiGii of Ireland & made a complete revolution in the repre sentation of England. Here is their indemi-, tv for the pa it, and fiecurity for the future. This compensates for every dilgrace, fuu. “ anddifafter. This is the reform too which the honorable gentleman pro mi fed us. He did indeed formerly prom.se us an hundred knights, but he did not at that time tell us that lie would bring them from Ireland. Sir, when I refteft upon the enormities which have been committed in that country, I reallv feel alhamed of my fpecits, affir med lof being a man. Tie l~id that had only aflidled death upon his viftims; that the iiiuuifition itfelf had abandoned tor -4 Lure ; and no Sicilian tyrants, nont one no: all the twelve Cselars, had exceeded the cru elties that had been praftifed. And can we permit this to be washed in- Lethe, and forgotten ? Is not the time arriv ed, or is there no time for enquiry into iuch unprecedented conduft ? And lliall we allow miniflers by a miserable juggle and fliam change cf adminitlration amongil their own creatures and partisans to escape unqueftion* ed ; and the people ol England arid Ireland to be diigraced ? Ilithetto, failure abroad ft , unconilicutional afts at.home, have been j deemed good parliament grounds of enquiry. It is high time to enquire into, and have de fined, the real objeft of the late war. It is fit to enquire, if iuch a peace as the prefentos Efe and honorable, why negociation even was rejefted before. Bur, hr, the whole situation of the coun try, external arid internal, the latter infinite ly more important, demands immediate en quiry. ihe lcandalous imprisonments, the dda ft est i o not I rcl an and, th 2 dist r e fte s cf the people of ItngianJ, the mon(lrons corruptions profligate expenditure, prifous—all the pro duft.tons of that wicked adminillration—ail cry aloud for enquiry. I ms, fir, is a melancholy pielure of the situation of th s country—a situation in many tdpefts ft mi inr to that in which \z flood an the end of the A nerican war. Ac that time the country was tiireatened wit'i and inpers tm precedented be tore, Chough trihing m co 11- parilbn with the dangers and difficulty tha: threaten 11s now. Then too, as now, and is natural after a wicked and unfucceErhi war, there was apparently a divifton and ditTerenco of opinion among ft minillers, cf whom the right honorable gentiemon gave the follow ing ddcription : “ There is only one thing/’ fiai j he Cf h\ which they fce.n to agree, in their rdblutiom ro destroy the empire they were called upon to save ; and this, I fear, they will accon plifn before t!ie indignation of a great &qJ luiTering people (hall fall upon their heads, in the ptmifnment they cieferve. May God grant that punilliment be not so long delayed as to involve within it agre.t and innoccnC family, who, though they can h ,ve had no lhare in the guile, may and moft probab will be doomed to lufTer the confi.quinces/* [Here Pitt seemed to di fid aim those senti ments which the honorable buenet cbferved he had read fiomewhere in print.] So laid, the right lion. Gentleman then, so fa> I now. Ac that time he vmqueftionably fiikike the language of patrioiifn and troth/In ! met with that support from the people of England, which that language undoubtedly ;ifier r ed. And what was that lano-uo Just ice for the pall, by the punlhment of those wicked in inure rs who had carried the ‘detcftable war, and security to the pro'de i.i future for their rights and liberties, by the only means by which juflice and freedom can be feeured to any nation upon earth, a fair reprefeir atiori of the people. Tha: opi nion ot his, which was good then, is good ! now, or rather better now. confirmed as it is by woeful experience. He then foretold the evils that would inevitably follow, if the course lie then recommended was not purfu eJ. He then fidd, and fa id truly, thut no honest man could serve the country under id corrupt a Iyitem of reprei .ntation ; tn u if an adminillration was formed of the abieft and honefteftmen, with such a system of leprefieu ration, they could not only do no eood, b even, with all their exertions and ail their endeavors, it would be impossible for them to avoid a recurrence offtmilar nr grea ter misfortunes. The right honorable gen tleman, however did not tell u% the full ex tent of the evils we were to endure. IJe only told us the evils tha: could no: oe avoided even of an adminillration composed of wisest &best men in die country. He did not tell us what himfeif could do. lie diu n>t tell us the extent of the calamities we were to fuffier und:r an adminillration comoofed of the war ft of men in the country ; under an administration of which he himfeif was the head, in con : ,unction with those very men whom he had before held up as the wicked est men in the country, and as fit objects of public indignation and public vengance- I nole evils we now icei, and I now te.i the people of Great Britain and Ireland, us he told them at the dole of the American war, that they have no choice between rum and reform. I cal! upon the gentlemen of Greac f Continued in the J'econd Fage.J