Southern Heritage Quotes: John C. Calhoun on Liberty

John C. Calhoun believed that bestowing liberty upon a people unfit for liberty would be a curse rather than a blessing

South Carolina

In his Disquisition on Government, John C. Calhoun explains why the preservation and perpetuation of our race is more important than liberty:

“The principle, in all communities, according to these numerous and various causes, assigns to power and liberty their proper sphere. To allow to liberty, in any case, a sphere of action more extended than this assigns, would lead to anarchy; and this, probably, in the end, to a contraction instead of an enlargement of its sphere.

Liberty, then, when forced on a people unfit for it, would, instead of a blessing, be a curse; as it would, in its reaction, lead directly to anarchy,—the greatest of all curses. No people, indeed, can long enjoy more liberty than that to which their situation and advanced intelligence and morals fairly entitle them. If more than this be allowed, they must soon fall into confusion and disorder,—to be followed, if not by anarchy and despotism, by a change to a form of government more simple and absolute; and, therefore, better suited to their condition. And hence, although it may be true, that a people may not have as much liberty as they are fairly entitled to, and are capable of enjoying,—yet the reverse is unquestionably true,—that no people can long possess more than they are fairly entitled to.

Liberty, indeed, though among the greatest of blessings, is not so great as that of protection; inasmuch, as the end of the former is the progress and improvement of the race,—while that of the latter is preservation and perpetuation. And hence, when the two come into conflict, liberty must, and ever ought, to yield to protection; as the existence of the race is of greater moment than its improvement.

It follows, from what has been stated, that it is a great and dangerous error to suppose that all people are equally entitled to liberty. It is a reward to be earned, not a blessing to be gratuitously lavished on all alike;—a reward reserved for the intelligent, the patriotic, the virtuous and deserving;—and not a boon to be bestowed on a people too ignorant, degraded and vicious, to be capable either of appreciating or of enjoying it. Nor is it any disparagement to liberty, that such is, and ought to be the case. On the contrary, its greatest praise—its proudest distinction is, that an all-wise Providence has reserved it, as the noblest and highest reward for the development of our faculties, moral and intellectual. A reward more appropriate than liberty could not be conferred on the deserving;—nor a punishment inflicted on the undeserving more just, than to be subject to lawless and despotic rule. This dispensation seems to be the result of some fixed law;—and every effort to disturb or defeat it, by attempting to elevate a people in the scale of liberty, above the point to which they are entitled to rise, must ever prove abortive, and end in disappointment. The progress of a people rising from a lower to a higher point in the scale of liberty, is necessarily slow;—and by attempting to precipitate, we either retard, or prematurely defeat it.

There is another error, not less great and dangerous, usually associated with the one which has just been considered. I refer to the opinion, that liberty and equality are so intimately united, that liberty cannot be perfect without perfect equality.

That they are united to a certain extent,—and that equality of citizens, in the eyes of the law, is essential to liberty in a popular government, is conceded. But to go further, and make equality of condition essential to liberty, would be to destroy both liberty and progress. The reason is, that inequality of condition, while it is a necessary consequence of liberty, is, at the same time, indispensable to progress. In order to understand why this is so, it is necessary to bear in mind, that the main spring to progress is, the desire of individuals to better their condition; and that the strongest impulse which can be given to it is, to leave individuals free to exert themselves in the manner they may deem best for that purpose, as far at least as it can be done consistently with the ends for which government is ordained,—and to secure to all the fruits of their exertions. Now, as individuals differ greatly from each other, in intelligence, sagacity, energy, perseverance, skill, habits of industry and economy, physical power, position and opportunity,—the necessary effect of leaving all free to exert themselves to better their condition, must be a corresponding inequality between those who may possess these qualities and advantages in a high degree, and those who may be deficient in them. The only means by which this result can be prevented are, either to impose such restrictions on the exertions of those who may possess them in a high degree, as will place them on a level with those who do not; or to deprive them of the fruits of their exertions. But to impose such restrictions on the exertions on them would be destructive of liberty,—while, to deprive them of the fruits of their exertions, would be to destroy the desire of bettering their condition. It is, indeed, this inequality of condition between the front and rear ranks, in the march of progress, which gives so strong an impulse to the former to maintain their position, and to the latter to press forward into their files. This gives to progress its greatest impulse. To force the front rank back to the rear, or attempt to push forward the rear into line with the front, by the interposition of the government, would put an end to the impulse, and effectually arrest the march of progress.

These great and dangerous errors have their origin in the prevalent opinion that all men are born free and equal;—than which nothing can be more unfounded and false. It rests upon the assumption of a fact, which is contrary to universal observation, in whatever light it may be regarded. It is, indeed, difficult to explain how an opinion so destitute of all sound reason, ever could have been so extensively entertained, unless we regard it as being confounded with another, which has some semblance of truth;—but which, when properly understood, is not less false and dangerous. I refer to the assertion, that all men are equal in the state of nature; meaning, by a state of nature, a state of individuality, supposed to have existed prior to the social and political state; and in which men lived apart and independent of each other. If such a state ever did exist, all men would have been, indeed, free and equal in it; that is, free to do as they pleased, and exempt from the authority or control of others—as, by supposition, it existed anterior to society and government. But such a state is purely hypothetical. It never did, nor can exist; as it is inconsistent with the preservation and perpetuation of the race. It is, therefore, a great misnomer to call it the state of nature. Instead of being the natural state of man, it is, of all conceivable states, the most opposed to his nature—most repugnant to his feelings, and most incompatible with his wants. His natural state is, the social and political—the one for which his Creator made him, and the only one in which he can preserve and protect his race. As, then, there never was such a state as the, so called, state of nature, and never can be, it follows, that men, instead of being born in it, are born in the social and political state; and of course, instead of being born free and equal, are born subject, not only to parental authority, but to the laws and institutions of the country where born and under whose protection they draw their first breath. . . .

About Hunter Wallace 11771 Articles
Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Occidental Dissent


  1. One assumes Calhoun is talking about blacks, but Southerners didn’t want liberty for Northern whites either. They didn’t want them to be able to decide if they wanted slavery on their territory or not.

  2. The South had already ceded the Northwest Territory, the vast majority of the Louisiana Purchase, and the Oregon territory to the North for the extension of their “free labor” system.

    The South had also consented to Oregon and California becoming free states. That wasn’t good enough for the North though. The North sent its people like John Brown to Kansas and Virginia to kill Southerners.

    Then it armed 178,000 negroes in the Union Army to kill Southerners in order to overturn the Dred Scott decision and make blacks into American citizens.

  3. Hunter- Again, you point out that our ancestors in the South were not just opportunistic ‘H8rs’ for having slaves, but they realized that, as a DIFFERENT SPECIES altogether, the best use for such mental deficients (Negroes) was to have them remain/be what they are by NATURE- that is, divinely predestined slaves of the sons of Adam, and NOT free men who are to be thought of as the EQUAL to said heir of Adam’s genetics.

    This post of yours clearly shows what is a thoughtful rationale, undergirded by centuries of observation on human behavior on the part of the hominids of Africa, transplanted into the British race and culture over in the Colonies. Since the Bible condones slavery (indeed, it actually says that slaves ARE to be perennial, chattel property handed down to the ‘Chosen People’ – that is, Europeans- for many generations… something the Egalitarian Alienists just get all in a tizzy over- which shows their false cred in being ‘Christians’);–-the-word-of-god/

    And, since Reconstruction, the only thing that has changed is that the negro has only changed ‘Massas’ – whether that of the Shylock variety (think of the Jewish rule of the NAACP for generations, and where Rosa Parks, and MLK learned their ‘tactics of [sic] non-violence – Jewish Bolsheviks, all of them) or of the Paternal Uncle Tom- I mean, Sam… (AFDC, EBT, Civil Rights, Eric ‘my people’ Holder, Barack ‘I’ll side with the Muslims’ Obama, etc. etc. etc.) Negroes as a RACE, as a CLASS, as an ontologically inferior species, ARE all that, and more… in ‘spades’ (pardon the pun- no, on second thought, I MEAN it) and, as BRA collapses in tatters everywhere, we are coming to the realization that EVERYONE KNOWS IT.

    That the ‘other gospel’ which St. Paul warned the citizens of Christendom about, literally shrieks (like a faggot or a woman) when you point out that their God is nothing more than a totemistic Mandingo when push comes to shove, isn’t called a ‘religion,’ doesn’t mean that is ISN’T ONE. The pan-heresy of ‘multiculturalism’ is the latest in a long line of Satanic plots to deny the ‘Elect’ status to White Europeans as the “Israel of God.” [Gal. 6;16] Desire on the part of everyone from Obama to arch-heresiarch John Piper are trying to deny it- to ‘say it isn’t so.’ But Christ said, ‘By their fruits ye shall know them.” Compare the morality of White America before 1960, and BRA today. Egalitarian divinization of the Negro is the new CULT on the planet, and most of its devotees are already on the ‘down low’ with it. And everything that CAN be done to make the Black Man the equal of the White (at least on paper) has been done.

    But the Emperor STILL has no clothes- even when he has all of his scripts on a teleprompter. Obama was the ‘best and brightest’ the antichrists of the modern age could offer- and clearly, Whites still know better. And that is why stuff like this has been hidden, and not taught in schools, for lo, these seventy years…… Bravo, Hunter.

    Many years.

  4. “One assumes Calhoun is talking about blacks, but Southerners didn’t want liberty for Northern whites either. They didn’t want them to be able to decide if they wanted slavery on their territory or not.”

    WTF??? that is total non sense, and takes a great deal of explaining

  5. Fr John, I don’t know where you get half of that stuff anyway. Blacks may have lower IQ’s on average, and some genetic differences, but a different species? So they are not genetically human then? And all races are different species? How can that be if whites and blacks can have children? A dog and a cat cannot have children. Dogs and cats are of different species, different species cannot have offspring together. I prefer a broader biblical category called a “kind” anyway. There is variation within a kind, various races in the human kind. Just as you have variation in the dog kind, including wolves, foxes, coyotes, etc. etc. But all of the same “kind”. That other stuff contradicts the bible anyway. Genesis 3:20, Acts 17:26 Genesis 1:25

    Now there might be genetic variation with humans, but that does not include evolution, just natural selection and mutations. Evolution is not biblical.

    Also, in biblical “slavery” it was more about being a servant and not usually forever. Deuteronomy 15:12-15 , exodus 21:20, Ephesians 6:9, Colossians 4:1, Exodus 21:16, Galatians 3:28.

    Remember that in christianity, there is only one main issue with God, the saved and the unsaved. Blacks can be saved, and whites can be unsaved, Galatians 3:28. The fact is, that a saved black man is equal in God’s eyes as a saved white man. No matter the differences in genetics. God is not a respector of persons. Acts 10:34, James 2:1.

    All racial issues , racial differences, whether genetic, or cultural, are a result of sin. Sin both hardens hearts, and screws with our physical bodies, our genetics. This must be kept in mind. But also, multiculturalism and divserity are a bad thing for everybody. It causes conflict and tension. Conservatism/libertarianism is most likely best.

  6. different species cannot have offspring together.

    Interbreeding Between Species

    From time to time I encounter the assertion that H. sapiens (and/or H. sapiens sapiens) could not have interbred with H. erectus, because they are different species. I’ve also been told that, “If they could have produced fertile offspring, then they weren’t really different species”. These fairly common misconceptions proceed from a misunderstanding of the ‘biological species concept’, which makes species distinctions based on fertility. Most people leave school thinking that, if two creatures can produce fertile offspring, then they must belong to the same species. I wouldn’t be surprised if many teachers actually tell students that, but it simply isn’t so.

    The biological species concept was developed by Ernst Mayr, in 1942. Here it is, as first formulated, and quoted in Douglas J. Futuyma’s EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY (1998): “Species are groups of actually or potentially interbreeding populations that are reproductively isolated from other such groups”. The “reproductive isolation” can be genetic (non-fertility), geographic, or behavioral; there is NO criteria that says (as is commonly believed) that if two populations can interbreed they are the SAME species. There is NO criteria that says that two distinct species CAN’T interbreed. Consider the example of wolves, coyotes and dogs: three distinct species that can interbreed. In fact, all species of the genus Canis can mate and produce fertile offspring (Wayne et al., 1997, re: A. P. Gray, Mammalian Hybrids). This is so common, that biologists actually use a different formulation of Mayr’s definition: they say, “If two populations can NOT interbreed, they are NOT the same species.” That is a very different statement. Note that this is an empirical definition, and gives no guidance in regard to extinct taxons, but the bottom line is: nothing in the biological species concept contradicts the idea that erectus and sapiens could and DID interbreed.

    I think it will come as a surprise to many that most scientists accept the fact that sapiens and erectus were so closely related that they could have interbred with each other. To begin with, some (probably most) scientists don’t think erectus and sapiens were genetically separate species at all. They consider them developmental ‘grades’ within a single taxon. Here is an example of that view, from Futuyma.

    “The word species, however, is sometimes used simply as a name for a morphologically distinguishable form. This is especially true in paleontology, in which a single evolving lineage (gene pool) may be assigned several names for successive, phenotypically different forms. For example, Homo erectus and Homo sapiens are names for different, distinguishable stages in the same evolving lineage. They are chrono-species, rather than separate biological species. The two species names do not imply that speciation (bifurcation into two gene pools) occurred: in fact it probably DIDN’T in this case.” [my emphasis on didn’t]

    Futuyma claims erectus is “human”, probably because all those bad bones from Africa show such strong expression of erectus traits. The afrocentrists say they were erectus slouching toward humanity; I say the more modern-looking fossils were erectus hybridized with sapiens. BOTH views imply that erectus and sapiens were able to interbreed. In fact, the afrocentrist position, that there was only a SINGLE gene pool, is a stronger statement of their capability for interbreeding than mine. Wolpoff, and other multiregionalists, exhibit similar thinking: he maintains that erectus was “human” and evolved into modern sapiens all over the world, while the afrocentrists say that process only culminated in Africa, from whence a modern human type radiated, displacing all other ‘people’ without interbreeding. They don’t deny those (supposedly erectus-derived) moderns and Eurasian indigenes could have interbred, they just claim they didn’t.

    So, nearly everybody is in agreement that erectus could interbreed with sapiens: multiregionalists, afrocentrists, and even me. Note, however, that some people also say erectus was a distinct taxon. In fact, Rightmire, a recognized expert on erectus, says (The Evolution of Homo Erectus, Cambridge, 1990) they were a distinct species; I even agree with him. It is interesting to see why there is disagreement on the subject. Wolpoff, and others, compare the early African and Asian skulls with the most modern ones and show that there was an increase in cranial capacity, and a morphological tendency toward some sapiens characteristics. BUT, those recent skulls are the very ones I contend are hybrid specimens! Rightmire excludes the late, Southeast Asian skulls from Ngandong for very good reasons, and shows that the rest of the series reveals no statistically significant development toward becoming modern human. That is even with including later, African skulls that I think show some interbreeding with sapiens radiating out of Eurasia. When you get up to the recent African material, which shows significant sapiens influence, the afrocentrists claim those aren’t erectus, but ‘early sapiens’. For instance, they call the Herto skulls H. sapiens idaltu.

  7. Ernst Mayor , a God hating atheist , has no bearing on the bible and humanity. I am talking from a biblical creationist point of view. As I said ,I prefer the term “kind” as opposed to species. I should have been clearer. I should have said that creatures of differing KINDS cannot breed. Where as within a kind there can be multiple species. That is most likely clearer. Kind is a biblical term. Groups of living organisms belong in the same created kind if they have descended from the same ancestral gene pool. “The question is not—what is a baramin, is it a species, a family or a genus? Rather, the question is—which of today’s populations are related to each other by this form of common descent, and are thus of the same created kind? Notice that this is vastly removed from the evolutionist’s notion of common descent. As the creationist looks back in time along a line of descent, he sees an expansion of the gene pool. As the evolutionist does likewise, he sees a contraction.” “For instance, it is conceivable (though not necessarily so) that crocodiles and alligators both descended from the same ancestral gene pool which contained all their functionally efficient genes, but not really conceivable that crocodiles, alligators and ostriches had a common ancestral pool which carried the genes for all three!” The facts come down to this. If your a bible believing christian, you can’t endorse the godless, atheistic religion of evolution.

    Dr William Provine, atheist professor of biology at Cornell University reinforced this:
    ‘… belief in modern evolution makes atheists of people. One can have a religious view that is compatible with evolution only if the religious view is indistinguishable from atheism.’ [in ‘No free will’; in Catching up with the Vision, Margaret W Rossiter (Ed.), Chicago University Press, p. S123, 1999.]

    Another atheistic anti-creationist, Eugenie Scott, who has won humanist awards for her campaigns, has also said ‘I would describe myself as a humanist or a nontheist. I have found that the most effective allies for evolution are people of the faith community. One clergyman with a backward collar is worth two biologists at a school board meeting any day!’

    Nobel Laureate Jacques Monod said: ‘[Natural] selection is the blindest, and most cruel way of evolving new species, and more and more complex and refined organisms … The struggle for life and elimination of the weakest is a horrible process, against which our whole modern ethics revolts. An ideal society is a non-selective society, one where the weak is protected; which is exactly the reverse of the so-called natural law. I am surprised that a Christian would defend the idea that this is the process which God more or less set up in order to have evolution.’ [The Secret of Life, broadcast interview, 10 June 1978.]

    Richard Dawkins ““An atheist before Darwin could have said, following Hume: ‘I have no explanation for complex biological design. All I know is that God isn’t a good explanation, so we must wait and hope that somebody comes up with a better one.’ I can’t help feeling that such a position, though logically sound, would have left one feeling pretty unsatisfied, and that although atheism might have been logically tenable before Darwin, Darwin made it possible to be an intellectually fulfilled atheist.”

    Richard Dawkins ‘Oh but of course the story of Adam and Eve was only ever symbolic, wasn’t it? Symbolic?! Jesus had himself tortured and executed for a symbolic sin by a non-existent individual. Nobody not brought up in the faith could reach any verdict other than barking mad!’

    Even the atheist Ernst is religious. “All of the atheists I know are highly religious; it just doesn’t mean believing in the Bible or God. Religion is the basic belief system of the person. Mankind wants the answers to all unanswerable questions.”

    Mayr admits that he’s made lots of mistakes over the years and his work is filled with speculation. Asked, “Were you ever wrong?” he answers, “On many things. A good scientist goes beyond the data he has. … In 1950, I published a paper on the evolution of man. On some things, I was not right, but … you can propose these ideas and stimulate thinking.”

    So in short, I reject evolutional ,atheistic science and accept creationist based science.

  8. Wesley Swift years ago talked about MUTATION NOT EVOLUTION. Mixing up the world races is an obession of the Evil Khazar Zionist Jews! Every Seed unto its own Kind. Like Begats Like. Not only are these evil mutant Cainites obessed with Race Mixing, but also Cloning and GMO Foods! The Khazar Zionist Jews want to be Masters of the Earth—with no White Race and all Mixed up Muds with them as boss on their World Slave Plantation!What a World! Buddy Tucker on his website Truth From Other Articles just added THE JEWS AND THEIR LIES by Dr. Martin Luther–by Gerald L.K. Smith. Good article! Has anybody seen all the Black Websites talking about how the SUN RAYS, Ultraviolet Rays will wipe all the whites off of earth. They say we dont have Melanin and Rays of Sun destroys Folic Acid and all WHITES WILL BECOME STERILE. Then there is this Black Negress going around talking about how all O Blood is contaminated with Mongolian Blood! Does Racial Lineage determine Blood Type? on Christian Identity Blog. THE ISIS CONSTITUTION…… The attack against our Race is being intensified more and more. Notice all the Black Websites popping up now with Black Race Books! They all promote our destruction. If the WHITE RACE does not control the Earth it will turn to a big Cess pool! I salute Buddy Tucker and his positive approach for White Western Man! Obama is a Jew! Thats why he is President! John Calhoun is Right!

  9. Christopher: Back in early 70s J.B. Stoner of National States Right Party (NSRP) who used the Thunderbolt Symbol and Flag had a good leaflet. The leaflet was how South African Scientists did an experiment. They took a Gorilla Ape and took its sperm and tried to impregnate a White Women. She did not get pregnant with Sperm from the Gorilla Ape. Then they took a Black Women and put the Gorilla Ape Sperm in her. She got pregnant and produced a half Gorilla Ape and Half Negro female. It could run 40 miles per hour and climb trees. It had hands and feet like Gorilla Ape. Edward R. Fields might still have a copy of this. He puts out The Truth At Last Newspaper. Just wanted to throw this in for a good laugh, but maybe its true!!!!!!!

  10. Rudel: What about J.B. Stoners Negro Ape Handbill? Ever read what the Black Muslims say about us—–that we were grafted from a pig? Or what the Talmud says about us? You should see what some Rabbis are saying in Israel about Goyim. So who is the lunatic? Why dont you read what Blacks are saying now—that the sun and Ultraviolet rays will kill off the white devils and the ray will destroy folic acid and make us sterile and that they have Melanin and we dont have it? Lunatic rantings? And oh yeah its OK for Jews to kill Goyim…….

  11. So because there are anti-white morons you feel that in order to even the score you have to be an ignorant moron too?

  12. As Millennial Woes aptly put it, our civilization is the software for our hardware.

    Change the hardware and the software won’t work.

    The main obstacle? Universalism is part of the white software package. We need to remind people that God wants the nations; that nationalism is righteous. Make our values into Universal values (again).

Comments are closed.