Texas and the Massachusetts Resolutions Page: 29 of 54
This book is part of the collection entitled: From Republic to State: Debates and Documents Relating to the Annexation of Texas, 1836-1856 and was provided to The Portal to Texas History by the UNT Libraries.
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on the other hand, must assume new liabilities, and acknowledge
a new set of authorities. They must acknowledge the
validity of an act done by oflicers of another party, to a treaty
which either makes them of equal authority with their owvn, or
which, at onle blow, destroys all the authority which they
possess to do the act. There can be no miedium. In this
connexion it hlas been rather Ihunorously asked by some, who
xwould be the President of the cotuntry, after a treaty had been
made joining Texas and the United States, suposing that
suchl an act were consitutitonal. \0Vouldi it be .Iohin lTyler,
or Saiuel 1ouston, eitiher, or both together ? IThe question,
odd as it may app er, cottainst the gist of the whole lmatter.
eCa a goiveirment by a treaty consexnt to annihiliate itself ?
Then wlhere is the binding foirce of tihe treatyn, after it is
n adel ? 1But, if it loes not anlihilaite itself it etejrs into tie
treaty on equal terls with tIe government witll w\lich it
treats ? In1 tlins i Tnstane, Textas wuld treat as a State, not
with ti1e seiarLate States, as sticll, btuIt witlh tihe Umnited States.
She is able t thto i asstle at position, a(nd to dictate tercns
towards is, sutch as no otter of the States siince the Declaration
of Independence could hI ve do1ne. it is inot necessary
that suchl a treaty sIouldI comnpel her to recognise tle constitution.
I3Her position in tih Union wou 1 tlihe be secured by
that treaty, whilst that of the other States would rest upon
the constitution. If, tlh n, the people of Texas were to take
it into tlieir heads to violate the conditions of the constitution,
whilst tlhy adhere to their treaty, what would be the mode
of redress ? Or, on the other hand, if they broke the treaty,
who would conduct the negtotiations that must follow, and when
would a resort to war be justifiable ?
BtIt the authorities of Texas may consent for the purpose
of gaiinig ai admiission to resort to a new expedient to avoid
the force of thlis objection. They may consent to disfranchise
themlselves, and to become simply a territory of the
Uliited States. Indeed it lias been intimated that such has
been the shape in which the treaty has placed the subject.
Yet one moment's co0nsideration will serve to show that this
is only an evasion, and does not remiove the difficulty. We
have acknowledged Texas as an independent State. Is it
co1mpetent for us at any imomlenit, by virtue of a treaty to deny
our word.s and to declare in the very act to which she is a
party that sie is no State at ill ? If a territory, slie either
las a governmlent or shle has not. If she lhas, then ourt oj oection
is not removed. If slie la s not, and is without a goverlnmetit,
why lias not MIexico all the riglts to rule over her which
she once hald, and whici shle lnever lias renounced. A confes
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Adams, Charles Francis. Texas and the Massachusetts Resolutions, book, January 1, 1844; Boston, Massachusetts. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth2355/m1/29/: accessed February 21, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .