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1970 Sup. Ct. Rev. 109 (1970)
Freedom of the Press and the Alien and Sedition Laws: A Reappraisal

handle is hein.journals/suprev1970 and id is 113 raw text is: WALTER BERNS

FREEDOM OF THE PRESS AND
THE ALIEN AND SEDITION LAWS:
A REAPPRAISAL
Until a few years ago it was customary, even among scholars, to
regard the beginning of America as the beginning of free govern-
ment, at least in the modern world. According to Lincoln, the
nation was conceived in Liberty. Seventy-five years earlier Madi-
son, who was in a position to understand the significance of the
event, said that nothing had excited more admiration in the world,
than the manner in which free governments had been established
in America.' It was, he continued, the first instance from the
creation of the world to the American revolution, that free inhabi-
tants have been seen deliberating on a form of government.'2 The
Union, Charles Pinckney said, is the temple of our freedom.'3
Such sentiments, and they could be collected by the thousands,
constitute a major part of the American political legacy. From the
beginning Americans have proclaimed liberty, have fought wars
in its name, have evaluated events and institutions and policies in
its light. They have convinced themselves not only that they are
and have always been a free people, but that they were intended
to be a free people whose institutions could serve, and were in-
tended to serve, as a model for the world. America, Lincoln said,
Walter Berns is Professor of Political Science, Umversity of Toronto.
1 3 Eua.sorr, DEBATES ON THE FEDERAL CONSTiTUTION 556 (1836 ed.).
2 Ibid.                       3 4 id. at 316.

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