It is our interest to educate this people in humanity, and in deep reverence for the rights of the lowest and humblest individual that makes up our numbers. Each man here, in fact, holds his property and his life dependent on the constant presence of an agitation like this of antislavery. Eternal vigi lance is the price of liberty : power is ever stealing from the many to the few. The manna of popular liberty must be gathered each day, or it is rotten. The living sap of to-day outgrows the dead rind of yesterday. The hand intrusted with power becomes, either from human deprav ity or esprit do corps, the necessary enemy of the people. Only by continual oversight can the democrat in office be prevented from hardening into a despot : only by uninter- mitted agitation can a people be kept sufficiently awake to principle not to let liberty be smothered in material prosperity. All clouds, it is said, have sunshine behind them, and all evils have some good result; so slavery, by the necessity of its abolition, has saved the freedom of the white race from being melted in the luxury or buried be neath the gold of its own success. Never look, therefore, for an age when the people can be quiet and safe.

~ Wendell Phillips (November 29, 1811–February 2, 1884) was an American abolitionist, advocate for Native Americans, orator and lawyer.