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George Mason

Geburtstag: 11. Dezember 1725
Todesdatum: 7. Oktober 1792

George Mason war ein US-amerikanischer Politiker und Großgrundbesitzer, der auch als „Vater der Bill of Rights“ bezeichnet wird. Wikipedia

Zitate George Mason

„Does any man suppose that one general national government can exist in so extensive a country as this?“

—  George Mason

Address to the Convention (4 June 1788) http://www.wwnorton.com/college/history/archive/resources/documents/ch07_04.htm
Addresses to the Virginia Ratifying Convention (1788)
Kontext: Does any man suppose that one general national government can exist in so extensive a country as this? I hope that a government may be framed which may suit us, by drawing a line between the general and state governments, and prevent that dangerous clashing of interest and power, which must, as it now stands, terminate in the destruction of one or the other. When we come to the judiciary, we shall be more convinced that this government will terminate in the annihilation of the state governments: the question then will be, whether a consolidated government can preserve the freedom and secure the rights of the people.
If such amendments be introduced as shall exclude danger, I shall most gladly put my hand to it. When such amendments as shall, from the best information, secure the great essential rights of the people, shall be agreed to by gentlemen, I shall most heartily make the greatest concessions, and concur in any reasonable measure to obtain the desirable end of conciliation and unanimity…

„Why should we not provide against the danger of having our militia, our real and natural strength, destroyed?“

—  George Mason

June 14
Addresses to the Virginia Ratifying Convention (1788)
Kontext: No man has a greater regard for the military gentlemen than I have. I admire their intrepidity, perseverance, and valour. But when once a standing army is established, in any country, the people lose their liberty. When against a regular and disciplined army, yeomanry are the only defence — yeomanry, unskillful & unarmed, what chance is there for preserving freedom? Give me leave to recur to the page of history, to warn you of your present danger. Recollect the history of most nations of the world. What havock, desolation, and destruction, have been perpetrated by standing armies? An instance within the memory of some of this house, — will shew us how our militia may be destroyed. Forty years ago, when the resolution of enslaving America was formed in Great Britain, the British parliament was advised by an artful man, [Sir William Keith] who was governor of Pennsylvania, to disarm the people. That it was the best and most effectual way to enslave them. But that they should not do it openly; but to weaken them and let them sink gradually, by totally difusing and neglecting the militia. [Here MR. MASON quoted sundry passages to this effect. ] This was a most iniquitous project. Why should we not provide against the danger of having our militia, our real and natural strength, destroyed?

„Every master of slaves is born a petty tyrant.“

—  George Mason

August 22
Debates in the Federal Convention (1787)
Kontext: Every master of slaves is born a petty tyrant. They bring the judgment of heaven on a Country. As nations can not be rewarded or punished in the next world they must be in this. By an inevitable chain of causes & effects providence punishes national sins, by national calamities.

„I ask who are the militia? They consist now of the whole people, except a few public officers. But I cannot say who will be the militia of the future day.“

—  George Mason

June 16
Addresses to the Virginia Ratifying Convention (1788)
Kontext: Mr. Chairman — A worthy member has asked, who are the militia, if they be not the people, of this country, and if we are not to be protected from the fate of the Germans, Prussians, &c. by our representation? I ask who are the militia? They consist now of the whole people, except a few public officers. But I cannot say who will be the militia of the future day. If that paper on the table gets no alteration, the militia of the future day may not consist of all classes, high and low, and rich and poor; but may be confined to the lower and middle classes of the people, granting exclusion to the higher classes of the people. If we should ever see that day, the most ignominious punishments and heavy fines may be expected. Under the present government all ranks of people are subject to militia duty.

„As nations can not be rewarded or punished in the next world they must be in this.“

—  George Mason

August 22
Debates in the Federal Convention (1787)
Kontext: Every master of slaves is born a petty tyrant. They bring the judgment of heaven on a Country. As nations can not be rewarded or punished in the next world they must be in this. By an inevitable chain of causes & effects providence punishes national sins, by national calamities.

„No man has a greater regard for the military gentlemen than I have. I admire their intrepidity, perseverance, and valour. But when once a standing army is established, in any country, the people lose their liberty.“

—  George Mason

June 14
Addresses to the Virginia Ratifying Convention (1788)
Kontext: No man has a greater regard for the military gentlemen than I have. I admire their intrepidity, perseverance, and valour. But when once a standing army is established, in any country, the people lose their liberty. When against a regular and disciplined army, yeomanry are the only defence — yeomanry, unskillful & unarmed, what chance is there for preserving freedom? Give me leave to recur to the page of history, to warn you of your present danger. Recollect the history of most nations of the world. What havock, desolation, and destruction, have been perpetrated by standing armies? An instance within the memory of some of this house, — will shew us how our militia may be destroyed. Forty years ago, when the resolution of enslaving America was formed in Great Britain, the British parliament was advised by an artful man, [Sir William Keith] who was governor of Pennsylvania, to disarm the people. That it was the best and most effectual way to enslave them. But that they should not do it openly; but to weaken them and let them sink gradually, by totally difusing and neglecting the militia. [Here MR. MASON quoted sundry passages to this effect. ] This was a most iniquitous project. Why should we not provide against the danger of having our militia, our real and natural strength, destroyed?

„A few years' experience will convince us that those things which at the time they happened we regarded as our greatest misfortunes have proved our greatest blessings. Of this awful truth no person has lived to my age without seeing abundant proof.“

—  George Mason

Letter to his daughter Sarah Mason McCarty after the death of an infand daughter (10 February 1785), published in The Life of George Mason, 1725-1792 Vol. 2 (1892) by Kate Mason Rowland, p. 74
Kontext: A few years' experience will convince us that those things which at the time they happened we regarded as our greatest misfortunes have proved our greatest blessings. Of this awful truth no person has lived to my age without seeing abundant proof. Your dear baby has died innocent and blameless, and has been called away by an all wise and merciful Creator, most probably from a life of misery and misfortune, and most certainly to one of happiness and bliss.

„Under the present government all ranks of people are subject to militia duty.“

—  George Mason

June 16
Addresses to the Virginia Ratifying Convention (1788)
Kontext: Mr. Chairman — A worthy member has asked, who are the militia, if they be not the people, of this country, and if we are not to be protected from the fate of the Germans, Prussians, &c. by our representation? I ask who are the militia? They consist now of the whole people, except a few public officers. But I cannot say who will be the militia of the future day. If that paper on the table gets no alteration, the militia of the future day may not consist of all classes, high and low, and rich and poor; but may be confined to the lower and middle classes of the people, granting exclusion to the higher classes of the people. If we should ever see that day, the most ignominious punishments and heavy fines may be expected. Under the present government all ranks of people are subject to militia duty.

„All men are by nature born equally free and independent.“

—  George Mason

Remarks on Annual Elections (1775)

„The poor despise labor when performed by slaves.“

—  George Mason

August 22
Debates in the Federal Convention (1787)

„Slavery discourages arts and manufactures.“

—  George Mason

August 22
Debates in the Federal Convention (1787)

„We came equals into this world, and equals shall we go out of it.“

—  George Mason

Remarks on Annual Elections (1775)

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