It is only when the people become ignorant and corrupt, when they degenerate into a populace, that they are incapable of exercising the sovereignty.
Usurpation is then an easy attainment, and an usurper soon found. The people themselves become the willing instruments of their own debasement and ruin...
If we persevere...we can not fail, under the favor of a gracious Providence...My fervent prayers to the Almighty that He will be graciously pleased to continue to us that protection which He has already so conspicuously displayed in our favor."
-- President James Monroe, First Inaugural Address, March 4, 1817