Gazette of the United-States. (New-York [N.Y.]) 1789-1793, September 02, 1789, Image 1

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    uiiis pfdeXfai
[No. XLI.]
the TABLE T. No. XLI.
I am happy to be relieved from writing an eflay
for this number, by prefentirig my readers with
the following speculation, put into my hands
by a friend.
" Jt would be ft range if men agreed in their ideas
about titles, when there is no other fubjett of equal im
prtancc in which they do not disagree."
THE fubje<ft of addre fling thePrefident by a
title has afforded ample materials for
argument and conjecture. The queltion is not,
however, whether by a legislative ad: a title
foall be confered on him, but whether the two
Houses, or either of them, shall address him by
any other style than that of President. Titles
are fuppoled to be derived from courtesy and com •
mon usage : and in this form of the queltion ihe
right of the two houses to address him by a title,
is exactly on a footing with that of any other in
dividuals : But is the usage a proper and fafe one :
Though the public curiosity in relation to this
question has considerably abated, I infer from
many late publications that it is not wholly ex
tinct. The readers of the Gazette will not be
much inftrudted, possibly, however, they may be
3mufed,by an account of a conversation between
two violentdifputants on this point ; I happened
to be present, and will communicate the fub
itance of their arguments.
The anti-title champion said, " that addressing
by a title isanti-republican. A public officer,how
ever elevated, is merely the servant of the peo
rile, and a title tends to make him a bad one
For it creates in the people falfe ideas of the of
fice, and stimulates the ambition and vanity of
the officer: The progress is natural to the ufur
paiion of the powei s which are supposed to be
long to the title. The people will be prepared
by this mimicry of royalty for servitude, and the
magiftiate for ufurpation.—lndependently of the
ill tendency of the usage, there is more simpli
city and true dignity in forbearing, than givino
a title.—The language of adulation has been
strained till it has 101 l its meaning, and nothing
makes the ridicule of it but the an
tiquity of the practice. It is applied to the little which never had power, or have loft it.
The titles of some of the German Princes are
abvirlefque upon dignity. High titles will re
quire great salaries. The people will be more
alarmed by this piece of arrogance than by
meafuresof national policy which would affect
their property and confer substantial strength on
the government. The national authority is fee
ble and in no condition to try experiments upon
the temper of the people. No title can be ap
plied which will not be laughed at. The prac
tice has descended to us from the Goths and other
barbarous nations ; and as this government is
founded on reasoning and reflection, and rests
for support on the good sense oi a people the most
cnlig.itened in the world, it cannot be deemed
necell'ary to address the President by a title.—Let
the tyrants of Alia work upon cowardice and ig
norance by the enchantment of found."
The advocate of titles replied, " That the anci
tnt republics did not depend on good sense alone ;
-They did more than we propose to do. A
chief magistrate is but a man, and not always
more respectable than many others. These wife
and jealous defend ers of liberty were not willing
totrult the execution of the laws to one who
rould command no more veneration than those
w o were bound to obey them. They omitted
no means to create a veneration for his official
charader. His person was declared sacred. Oaths
and imprecations were added, and many of the
rites oi religion. He was attended by lidiars,
ant wnh all the pomp of royaltv : Yet at the
or the year this mighty consul retired to
private life.
•1 '''f ? r . ale con ft>tutions have actually given ti-
\ es , ot higher import than any now in contem
atio.i foi the President. The people have nor
a,e - , nor fuffered the loss of liberty in confe
rence. J
J] C hav t 110 Pretcnfions to the mock humility
j ia.e n,,timed. There is real arrogance in it.
n . atlo,is Europe will not expert lis to teach
/" '° w r ° treat their supreme magistrates.
C 1 ® people dishonored and degraded by ad
ing their President by a title or style of office ?
'ne revcrfe is true.
tarn a ' llonarch y. the King is said to be the foun
lennlY l ° nor ' Tlle secret contempt of many for
ti nn . lcan influences their oppofi
havf 1° an - v r tnl 1 e derived from the people. We
them of" , enou gh of titles, andlongufed to
t .m, though not to such as are of popular extrac
ts a n ' 3 ni ° re than a lord, may cre
have ' ,ut f° r the people, who individually
0 ran ' { > collectively to bellow it, is ofFen
WEDNESDA Y, September 2, ijiy.
live co the pride ofthofewho despise everything
xv proceeds from their inferiors, and seems
to tne people themselves an awkward exercise cl
their prerogative. They are called, and really
are, the rounlain of power. Why is it less pro
per to call the people the fountain of honor ' In
a republic,the laws reign. The laws, then, mult
dc made respectable : The office of administering
t lem mult be made so too. Over and above the
influence of talents, men are honored for their
power or wealth. A people wliirh will not give
money, nor trult power, may effect the fame pu; -
pole by titles. The weaker the government,the
more need of their aid. They are cheaper than
money, and fafer than the sword, and probably
lav e more effeiS: than both in gaining the refpe<Jt
or the riling generation. Nor let us fear dan
gei from this. If, with a founding title, no real
power is given, the man who wears it will not
become dangerous to liberty. He is rather dis
armed by it : Like the peacock, encumbered with
his tail,he will be beaten by every dunghill cock.
If, without a title, great power is given, the
danger is the greater. Power is a ferpent,they tell
us, wliofe bite is deadly. Give him arattle and
the heedless paflenger will have warning. The
hlent snake in the graft is more to be dreaded.
It is as proper to guard a republic against the
contempt of it's members, as the ambition of it's
officers. I would have the people free, and while
they are so, I would have them refpecfttliemfelves
and their government ; and believe that their
si ee luftrages can make a man as honorable as a
bit of parchment with a King's signet."
I was called upon to decide the controversy—
and though I declined it, I was at length com
pelled to all'ume the judge
I declared that the utility of titles appeared to me
to be very much exaggerated. A government really
well balanced and well administered would not be
despised if they ffiould be refufed. Nor, while
elections continue to be free, will titles supply
men in power with money to corrupt, and armies
to crulh the defenders of liberty.—Time will de
cide whether they are ufeful at all, and in what
It would be difficult to fay what title should be
applied. Ridicule on one fide and jealousy on
the other, form a dangerous ftrait,through which
thole mult pass who would import a title. It is
probable that any which may be cliofen will be a
jest to one half the world, and a scare-crow to
the other. AMICUS.
<l IN a free, well balanced government, how
impotent mull all warlike enterprizes prove,
that are not fancftioned by the people in their re
presentative aflembly ! Without money,the sinew
of war, thedefigns of an incroaching ambitious
Executive mult prove abortive.—A free represen
tation ot the people, which retains in its hands
this grand momentum of theconftitution, is a
never failing bulwark to freedom."
" No people could be more tenacious of tlieii
si eedom than the Swedes, till Gujlavus the foil of
Eric ascended the throne—His manners were so
amiable, Iris- virtues so conspicuous, his govern
ment so just, and he made so popular a use of his
powers, that his fubjecfts never thought they
could commit enough into his hands—But what
was the consequence ? His fucceflors made his
power a precedent for their own, without attend
ing to the precedent of his adminift ation.—This
inltance ffiews in the strongest point of view, how
neceflary, and how important a well defined con
stitution is to a free people."
A CORRESPONDENT observes, that " The
" firji magiflrate of our nation, when he gives a let
" ter of Credence to the King oj trance, ?nufl ?L ■
" htm the title oj His Most Christian Majefty,u>/i,!> a
" long firing of others : But -when the King oj France
" gives an Ambajfador a Letter of Credence to tht.
" fi r ft "tagijlrate of our nation, he mt/f} call him Le
" Sieur George U ajhington, president oj the United
" States.—An American Credence to Holland mujl
1" be directed to Their HighMightineilesThe Lords
" The States General of the United Netherlands :
" But a Dutch Credence mujl be direded, Tot-de
" Heer George Wajhington, President of the Uni
" ted States.
" Our Credences to Spain mujl be direfled to His
" Most Catholic Majesty : Spanijh Credences to A
" tnerica, mujl be directed to El Senor George
" Wajhington, President of the United States
This is American patriotism and national pride,
is it ?
American Credences to England must be direct
ed to His Mojl Excellent or His Mo/} Sacred Majejlv,
—British Credences to us, must be directed tr.
Mr. George IVajhington, President of the United
f Published oh IVcdnefday and Saturday. J
This diftindlion must be known not only at
courts, but by the nations—by the officers, i'jldi
ers and Teamen of their armies and navies.
How many drubbings mull you give them be
fore they will refpec r t Mr. as much as Majejiy.
If titular distinCtions have any influence, at all,
upon human ears, methinks these are somewhat
humiliating to the brave, daring and intrepid
sons of American liberty
That we can chastise all the nations of the
earth if they affront us, to be sure cannot be
doubted : But what shall we do with the debts
■jud taxes, that will become necefl'ary to this
purpose ?—Molt men who hate honors, love mo
ney. O.
NEW-YORK, September 2, 1789.
A MESSAGE was received from the senate
with the bill to provide for the registering ves
sels, and to regulate the coasting trade—return
ed with the concurrence of the senate in the last
amendments proposed by the house.
The engrofled bill for eftablifliing the salaries
of the executive officers was read a third time,
a motion was made for its recommitment, which
was loft—The ayes and noes being called for by
Mr. Livermore, on the question, Shall this bill
pass ? are as follow—
Meflrs. Ames, Baldwin, Benfon, Boudinot,
Brown, Cadwallader, Gale, Goodhue,Grifpi:, Hart
ley, Heijter, Jacifon, Laurance, Lee, Matthews,
Moore, Scott, Sedgwick, Sherman, Silvefler, Smith,
( VI.) Smith, (S. C.) Sturges, Trumbull, Tucker,
Wadfioorth, Wynkoop.— 27.
Meflrs. Coles, Floyd, Fojter, Gerry, Grout, Ha
thorue. Livermore, Parker, Patridgt, Van RanfJ
laer, Schureman, Seney, Sinnickfon, Stone, Sumpter.
she bill tor suspending the operation of a
clause in the collection law was read, and order-
to be eiigrofled lor a tnird reading on
Mr. Bourn not presented a petition from the
inhabitants of the County of Middlesex, New-
Jersey, refpeCiing a clause in the judicial bill now
pending in theh. 'ife, read and laid on the tat^e.
In committee of the whole house, 011 the bill
for eftablifliing judicial Courts—Mr. Boudinot
in che chair.
_ The third fetftion was again under considera
tion.—The motion foi (hiking out the whole
claufeWas renewed by Mr. Li ermore 'The
tate of this clause, laid he, will determine the
late of the whole bill.—The greatcft obj ftim
that I have to it, is,that it efta'olifhes two diftmd:
fyfteuis of judicial proceedings in the United
States.—He then stated certain cases in which
there would be such clalhings and interferences
as would be attended with great difficulties
Suppofc, (aid he, a person is in the cr.ftody of a
State officer, and is at the fame moment taken
hold of by an officer of the federal court, what is
to be done—is the man to be divided ? This sys
tem may open a door to collusions in cases of
debt—by having prisoners under pretences of ar
velt by the federal authprity, violently forced
from the hands of State officers.- If ihefe
difficulties can be got over, I (hall think
more favorably of the bill ; but I do not fee how
they can be polfibJy—We have supported the Uni
on for fourteen years without such courts The
fame or equal abilities may be found jultice
may be aswelladmiiiiftered as heretofore 1 know
of no complaints of any great consequence that
have existed.—Some cales of capture have been
cai 1 ied to the court of appeals,but they have been
very few —He then adverted to the institution of
courts ol admiralty in favor of eftablilhing which,
he laid, the expence will not be by a fiftieth
pai t so much, and the advantage will be ten
thousand times as great.
Mr. Smith (S. C.) As much will depend on
he determination of this question, it is necefla
ry it lhould be well considered by all the com
mittee.—lt will not be easy to alter this'fyftem
when once eftabliffied : ihe judges are to' hold
-licit conimilfions during good behr.viour,aiid af
ter they are appointed, they av e only re moveable
by impeachment; consequently rhis system must
be a permanent one; the committee will not
therefore determine, that there ffiall be district
ourts, until they have reflected ferioully on the
consequences attending their vote.
After this point is fe led,' the next which oc
curs is the extent of jurifditftion, to be annexed
to this court. This question is as important as
the former ; for it will be no less difficult than