If there be any among us who would wish to dissolve this Union or to change its republican form, let them stand undisturbed as monuments of the safety with which error of opinion may be tolerated where reason is left free to combat it.
Equal and exact justice to all men, of whatever state or persuasion, religious or political; peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations, - entangling alliances with none; the support of the State governments in all their rights, as the most competent administrations for our domestic concerns, and the surest bulwarks against anti-republican tendencies; the preservation of the general government in its whole constitutional vigour, as the sheet anchor of our peace at home and safety abroad; . . . freedom of religion; freedom of the press; freedom of person under the protection of the habeas corpus; and trial by juries impartially selected,- these principles form the bright constellation which has gone before us, and guided our steps through an age of revolution and reformation.
Speaking of justice: Truth is its handmaid, freedom is its child, peace is its companion, safety walks in its steps, victory follows in its train; it is the brightest emanation from the Gospel; it is the attribute of God.
By whatever basis human desires are classified, the promise of an abundant life covers virtually all. To the spiritual it suggests escape from futility; to the sensuous it calls up visions of luxury; to the defeated it is a dream of success. To the idle it pledges ease; to the weary, rest; to the frightened it means safety; to the anxious, security; and to the improvident it conjures inexhaustible resources. Persuade a man that you can give him the thing he most desires and you will be his hero; offer him justification for his failures and he will be your disciple; assure him a boundless supply of "loaves and fishes" and he will seek to make you king.
If asked when you can deliver something, ask for time to think. Build in a margin of safety. Name a date. Then deliver it earlier than you promised. The world is divided into two classes of people: the few people who make good on their promises (even if they don't promise as much), and the many who don't. Get in Column A and stay there. You'll be very valuable wherever you are.
Slavery is but half abolished, emancipation is but half completed, while millions of freemen with votes in their hands are left without education. Justice to them, the welfare of the States in which they live, the safety of the whole Republic, the dignity of the elective franchise, - all alike demand that the still remaining bonds of ignorance shall be unloosed and broken, and the minds as well as the bodies of the emancipated go free.