Davy Crockett, king of the wild frontier?

As I grew up I would watch Walt Disney’s different renditions of hero’s of mine.  Davy Crockett was one of them.  George Pierce and I would hike all around through out the various woods as he and I would pretend that we were one or the other of a character from Disney.  We carried our cap guns, and knives, building dams on the creeks, and digging fox holes, leaving them unattended when snakes took them over.  But I never knew that Davy Crockett actually had practical things to say to the Congress that he had been elected to.  Below is a sample of some of it:

“The power of collecting and disbursing money at pleasure is the most dangerous power that can be entrusted to man, particularly under our system of collecting revenue by a tariff, which reaches every man in the country, no matter how poor he may be, and the poorer he is the more he pays in proportion to his means. What is worse, it presses upon him without his knowledge where the weight centers, for there is not a man in the United States who can ever guess how much he pays to the government. So you see, that while you are contributing to relieve one, you are drawing it from thousands who are even worse off than he.”

“If you have the right to give to one, you have the right to give to all; and, as the Constitution neither defines charity nor stipulates the amount, you are at liberty to give to any and everything which you may believe, or profess to believe, is a charity, and to any amount you may think proper. You will very easily perceive what a wide door this would open for fraud and corruption and favoritism, on the one hand, and for robbing the people on the other.”  Originally published in The Life of Colonel David Crockett, 1884 by Edward Sylvester Ellis.


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