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while no pains are taken to check the ever be more successful than he has latter, which are suffered to flourish with himself proved, in his attempts to a rank luxuriance. It is painful to con- seduce them from their allegiance. template the possible consequences of The Volunteers have been mentioned this political infatuation.
as a case in point, to show that a But, while it is acknowledged that society, originally praiseworthy and the Orange system was originally well patriotic, may eventually become injuintended, and that it has served very rious to the public weal. But the important ends, has been asked, may analogy does not hold; for the Volunit not also be powerful for evil ? I teers were, from the first, animated by answer not, without such a departure not a little jealousy of England, which from its principles as must completely only manifested itself more and more change its nature. Loyalty is its end in proportion as they felt their strength; and aim, the pole-star by which it is so that they but followed the law of guided ; and when it ceases to be loyal, their nature when they ultimately it ceases to be Orange, and must die a assumed that formidable attitude which natural death before it can appear in menaced the empire with so much any other form from which disloyal and peril. But the Orange Institution is seditious results might be apprehended. founded upon an affectionate attachThe church might as well be charged ment to British connexion, and they with propagating irreligion, the courts would be contradicting the law of their of law with corrupting justice, the nature if they were ever betrayed into medical profession with being injurious any course of action by which that to the public health, as the loyal asso- conuexion might be endangered. Inciation of Orangemen with entertain- deed it may be said, that the acknowing designs subversive of the constitu- ledged evil of the one confederacy tion. It is rather amusing, too, to see may have, in some degree, occasioned the class of persons whose fears have the other. The volunteer association been excited lest it should become dis- acted as a kind of hot-bed of disconloyal. Mr. O'Connell and Mr. Sheil tent, in which a premature and preterare the individuals who, in their pro- natural vigor was given to the pestilent phetic horror of future evil, recommend products of infidelity and sedition. It its extinction, notwithstanding that it was the parent of the united Irish might be proved to be of some present system. The Orange association arose advantage. But they may calm their for the purpose of counteracting the fears ; Orangemen will never realize evils thus occasioned ; and unless we their wild anticipations. Their drafts apply the homoiopathic principle to upon the future will be dishonored, politics, and maintain, that whatever even as their imputations respecting will cure treasonable practices will the past have been disproved. When also cause them, it will be impossible, a Roman Catholic association may be with any degree of consistency, to formed, friendly to the church, then maintain, that consequences such as they may be found hostile to it; when flowed from the old volunteer system the repealers have changed their views can ever be apprehended from the and principles, and entered into a con- Orange association. At all events, it federacy for the confirmation and will be time enough, when such conestablishment of the act of union, then sequences do follow, to provide against they may be opposed to that measure, them. Practical good' is not to be and do all in their power to have it prevented, because knaves pretend, or dissolved; but not until then ; so that visionaries imagine, that they can the great agitator and his accomplices foresee speculative evils. It is quite may spare themselves the pain of spe- possible that the system of freemasonry culating upon impossibilities. Orange may yet be turned to a bad account; men will not be found traitors to their but is it, therefore, to be suppressed at principles until rivers run back to their present ? No one will say so. Why? sources, or mountains invade the domi- Because experience has hitherto proved nion of the sea. Mr. O'Connell may that it is innoxious;--and no sane policontinue to believe that the same spirit tician will prefer theory to experience. which actuates them now, will continue In like manner, I say, let us judge of to actuate them in all succeeding times, the Orange system from what all may and that no future demagogue will know, not from what its cncmies may
choose to conjecture, and there is no the law might promptly curb his enindividual. whose common sense has venomed virulence, it might not be so not been wofully perverted by faction, necessary to detect his flagitious falsewho could for one moment maintain, hood. But, no one can expect any that a tree which has hitherto borne such vigour on the part of government wholesome fruit should be cut down, as at present constituted, without because it may, at some future period, entertaining the most vain and chimealtogether change its nature, and pro- rical expectations. The incendiaries duce most deadly poison,
have now a voice in the cabinet ; aud There is another ground upon which Hume, and Roebuck, and O'Connell, the continuance of the Orange Insti- and Whittle Harvey, are sufficiently tution may be contended for, arising powerful to beard a conservative, and out of the changes which have lately to dictate terms to an anti-conservative taken place in the constitution of administration. It is, therefore, indisEngland. No one will deny that it pensable, if even the shadow of our has become vastly more democratic limited monarchy is still to be prethan it was before. The Reformn Bill served, that every means should be has thrown the governing power of the taken for cherishing whatever amount country into the hands of the people. of good principle exists amongst the We still have a sovereign, and we still people at large, as the only available have a house of lords ; but every one force that can be employed for avertknows that they are now regarded as ing the open and the secret designs of but slender obstacles to the popular those who are preparing, as it were, will, whenever it is strongly manifested; an infernal machine, which they are and, that if we are still to have even sooner or later resolved to discharge the semblance of a mixed governinent, against the constitution. it can only be by educating and in It is my belief, that the force of good forming the people, so as to show them principle is still sufficient to defeat the the dangers which inust attend its force of bad, and that if we are ouly overthrow, and impress them with a true to ourselves, our enemies will have grateful sense of the blessings which no advantage over us. We need not they have hitherto derived from its seek for coercive laws, nor have reprotection. That there are elements course to any act of extra-constituof mischief at work to produce a con- tional rigour, in order to confound trary effect ; that there are individuals their devices. But we cannot safely disin whose judgment a republican form pense with any one of the means within of government is preferable, and who our power for increasing, concentrating, are continually holding forth America and invigorating that attachment to the as the model which we should seek to ancient institutions of the country, which imitate ; that there are others whose is the only available antagonist to the insane cupidity would lead them to hostility by which they are assailed. desire a scramble, and who, for a little Such attachment exists to a degree of present gain or distinction, would have which the enemies of our institutions no objection to encounter the horrors of have no conception ; even many of their the French revolution, needs but to be friends do not know its extent. Let stated to be admitted by every candid it be wisely employed, and all will yet man who has paid any attention to be well. Let it be neglected, or underpublic affairs. And, if the designs of valued, or discouraged, and nothing these persons are to be resisted, they can human can save us. In this latter case, be alone effectually resisted by à consti a triumpbant ascendancy will be speetutional party, arising: amongst the dily given to the powers of evil. The people themselves, and bent upon the reign of anarchy will have compromotion of constitutional objects. menced. A few honest and intrepid A strong government might dispense men, may, here and there, continue a with such a party. Where the se- hopeless struggle ; but they cannot, in ditious
might be summarily this unassisted struggle, long sustain the coerced, it might not be quite indis- torrent that will rush against them, pensable that his pretexts should be and in which the monarchy, the church, stripped of their plausibility, and ex- the house of lords, the aristocracy, posed in their native deformity. When all that gives its peculiar, ennobling,
and conservative character to British Besides, the maintainers and improvers. society, must share a common de- of our institutions must be united upon struction.
many points, while those who impugn As I stated before, the topics are them need be united but on one. Šo upon the surface, which induce men to that there is, in every balanced state, range themselves on the one side. Not a natural combination, founded upon a so those which would induce them to kind of instinctive compromise of parrange themselves on the other. The ticular differences, always going on "movement” party aptly designates against the monarchical and the aristothose who but follow the natural bias cratical institutions; while it can only of their political temperament, when be resisted by the desultory efforts of they recklessly pursue changes having enlightened individuals, who must be for their object the more complete always too few and too feeble to couns ascendancy of the democratic prin- tervail their numerous and eager asciple in all our civil institutions. sailants. What then is to be done? There are, no doubt, many who are Manifestly to form a combination, sincerely persuaded that such ascen- in which the friends of social order dancy is, abstractedly, desirable ; and may be able effectually to propagate who, therefore, must be allowed to be their convictions. If this be done, they actuated by honest motives in the will very soon find that good principles course which they pursue; but the will not long want steady and zealous great strength, nevertheless, of that supporters. There are many, who could party consists in its adherents of doubt- never themselves, hit upon ready anful principle ; of men who intend one swers to the plausibilities of the demathing, while they pretend another ; of gogue, to whom the proceedings of that gamblers in the lottery of politics, character must be odious; and these who are willing to stake the public will readily fall under the influence of good for the chance of such a prize as those able men by whom his sophismay gratify their personal ambition ; of tries may be exposed. There are Dissenters, who hate the Church more many whose love for the church is than they love religion ; of economists, strong, but who have not themselves to whom the corn laws are an offence ; been able to see the fallacies involved of infidels, to whom an ecclesiastical in the attacks of its enemies. These establishment is a crying evil ; of will, naturally, be delighted to range papists, to whom a reformed Church themselves under those able champions is an abomination ; of republicans, to by whom it may be defended. . Thus, whom a monarchical form of govern a party will be created by whom a ment must be distasteful. All these popular resistance will be made to are willing to sink their differences, measures of a dangerously innovating and to conspire for one common ob- character; and, without any undue ject. Now, the views and the motives departure from the forms or the usages which would lead men to make a of a free government, the balance of vigorous opposition to this powerful the constitution may be preserved. party, do not lie upon the surface, but Whereas, without it, the overwhelmmust be sought out and investigated, ing influence of democracy must be in order to be discovered and appre- speedily felt ; and the government of ciated. It is not his natural inclina- the country, no matter by whom it tion which will lead any one to abjure may be conducted, will be exposed to a large share of popular power, or to a succession of virulent attacks, which deny to the order to which he belongs must end ciiler.in its overthrow or increased influence in the affairs of the its degradation country. He can only be induced The reader will sec at once that thus to act from an enlightened con- this great purpose has been abundantly viction, that, by any other course, the answered by the Orange institution in general harmony of society would suf- Ireland. It has collected and concenfer greater detriment than he or his trated the loyalty of the country, so particular class could reap advantage ; that the government were always able and that conviction can only be acquired to command abundance of assistance, by a patient study of history, and in whenever the aid of loyal men was attentive observation of human afairs. required. This was felt when rebel.
lion raged in 1798. It was also felt in under different names, appeared from 1803, when the culpable supineness of time to time, to champion the cause the Irish executive, almost betrayed of our menaced institutions ? And in the government into the hands of a thus going, one by one, “to the tomb few contemptible insurgents. I remem- of all the Capulets,” they but shared ber well the confusion which prevailed the fate of every irregular and desulat the Castle, when the Orangemen came tory effort to resist a permanent evil. from all quarters desiring arms and it may operate as a palliative, but it ammunition, and none were to be will not work a cure ; and by disguising found ! No; I am wrong.
There the malignity of the complaint, may were discovered, after a diligent search, cause the remedy to be deferred until some muskets, and some few rounds of the disease has become desperate. ball cartridge ; but it was found upon The evil to be guarded against is, trial that the bore of the muskets was the tendency to continual deterioration too small for the size of the balls ! which belongs, almost of necessity, to
All this may be allowed ; but still it every system of policy in which the demay be contended that the deficiency mocratic element largely prevails. This to which I allude may be better sup, can be effectually met by plied by Conservative associations. I societies which are only called into think not; and I think experience is existence by its occasional extraordiwith me. If by conservative associa nary
manifestations. The remedy tions be meant, those clubs and con must be as searching as the disease federacies to which great political exi- is deeply seated, and will never be gencies have given rise, they depend effectual, unless it be persevered in too exclusively upon excitement, to as a sweetener and a preventive long furnish such a steady and permanent after every apparent symptom has been counterpoise to the democratic faction removed. as the case requires. It is the nature Democracy is an encroaching prinof most factions to be aggressive ; and ciple, which never will rest satisfied if, in one shape, it be defeated today, it with the limits within which it is cons, will be in the field in another shape to fineu. It must be restrained within morrow. It possesses a kind of Protean them, or it will pass beyond them. versatility in the multiplicity and variety Now, this necessitates either constant of the efforts which it makes for the control, or continual resistance ; and, accomplishment of its object. Without, in either case, a spirit must be called therefore, the most unceasing vigilance, into action which will neither slumber the counter-agent will be in vain pos- nor sleep, so long as the arch enemy. sessed of powers of the most vigorous is vigilant and wakeful. Otherwise, resistance. Conservative associations like Aaron's rod when it became a are, I know, capable of sudden and serpent, it will speedily make an end violent efforts, by which a great deal of all its competitors. may be done for repressing the audacity Conservative societies have always of democratic ambition. But they are
seemed to me like the seed sown upon also liable to be as suddenly remitted; stony places. For a time they appeared and thus, what was gained at Cannæ to fourish. But they took no root may be lost at Capua, and our very secu- amongst the bulk of the people ; and rity of success may be the cause of our they were consequently doomed to failure, and convert an humbled into barrenness and decay. But the Orange a triumphant and insulting enemy. society did take root amongst the How often have I seen conservative bulk of the people, and its beginnings associations arise, and Aourish, and were not more unpromising ihan its decay; leaving no more trace of what progress has been extraordinary. It they had been, than the skyrocket had its origin amongst the humblest of leaves in the air through which it the peasantry, and it now embraces cleaves its fiery way-as brilliant as within its association the highest and noisy, and as evanescent-alike com- the noblest in the land. The one mencing in fire, and alike concluding in depended upon excitement.
It could smoke! Was it not thus with the subsist only under the stimulus of exBrunswick Societv ? Was it not thustraordinary eloquence, or the provowith the various other societies which, cation of tormidable nostilny; ana,
upon the withdrawal of either, a col- is, in fact, my ground of hope. I see lapse was inevitable. The other de- that it has performed great service for pended upon principle. It had, as it Ireland heretofore. I think that it were, its peace establishment and its will still triumph over its secret and its war establishment. When the enemy open enemies, and perform still greater was absent, it was vigilant ; wlien he service for the British empire. was present, it was prepared.
There is one especial feature of the Therefore it is, that in my humble institution which has called forth the judgment, the Orange association is bitterest and the most contemptuous infinitely preferable, for combining all revilings. That is, that every meeting good men in the unity of sound po- of every lodge is opened and closed with litical faith, to any other with which I prayer. It is perfectly impossible for any am acquainted. It is like one of those one who has not witnessed it, to conceive spontaneous productions which nature the effect which this practice has on the furnishes in such abundance where spirit that pervades their deliberations. poisons grow, and which are intended A degree of seriousness, solemnity, as an antidote. Not to speak pro- and sanctity, is thus imparted, which fanely, I do fervently believe it to more than any thing else has contri, have been providentially provided, for buted to keep sacred principle alive, the purpose of counteracting evils and to feed the vestal dame of loyalty, which the nature of our political posi- by which the devoted watchers keep tion necessitated, and which no human guard at the gate of the constitution. sagacity could have foreseen or averted. It is no wonder that Mr. Hume should It strengthened the hands of the execu- have constructions fastened upon it, as tive when the crown itself was tottering a practice deserving his weightiest under the assaults of faction; and in reprobation—for it is, no doubt, most the midst of treason, it caused a spring- disagreeable to the master whom he tide of loyalty to set in amongst the serves ; and he were unworthy the dispeople, by which conspirators were tinction that master has enabled him dismayed and confounded. When to attain, if he did not bear his decided popish bigotry and cruelty, taking ad- testimony against it. But not the less, vantage of our political insecurity, were I trust, will it continue to distinguish about, again, to manifest themselves in those whom he has honoured with his their accustomed atrocities and abomi- vituperation, and who would have nations, the Orange institution, like reason to feel that they forfeited the Aaron of old, stood between the living Divine favour, if they were so unforand the dead, and the plague was tunate as to incur his praise. stayed. It is, therefore, impossible for The very fact of being able to comthe wise and good not to feel grateful mence and conclude their meetings in for services such as these, even as it is the manner they do, implies the conimpossible for those whose wicked sciousness of a good purpose. devices were thus frustrated, not to that doeth evil cometh not unto the feel hatred for an institution but for light, lest his deeds should be reproved; which their bloody and destructive but every one that doeth good cometh projects might long ago have been to the light, that his deeds may be made successful.
manifest that they are wrought in And it is melancholy to perceive God. These words are not profaned that gratitude is evanescent, while when applied to the feelings and prinhatred is eternal. How aptly, at ciples of Orangemen, who could not, the present day, do O'Connell" and cherishing any latent evil in their Sheil represent the old enmity by hearts, any envy, hatred, malice, or which Orangemen were regarded in uncharitableness, use a form of prayer 1798? But where, at the present day, which could only, in such a case, be are we to find any adequate represen- mockery the most gratuitous and retation of the gratitude of which they volting. Supposing them bad men, were the objects, when they were their meetings are secret meetings, pronounced the saviours of their coun- they are not of the character of those try ? Alas! Echo answers, “where!" which were held in synagogues, or in But I do not despond. Far from it. the corners of streets, where they I said I believe the institution to have might have their reward in receiving been providentially designed. That the praise of men. Each other they