Good and wise men, in all ages…have supposed that the deity, from the relations, we stand in, to himself and to each other, has constituted an eternal and immutable law, which is, indispensibly, obligatory upon all mankind, prior to any human institution whatever. This is what is called the law of nature, “which, being coeval with mankind, and dictated by God himself, is, of course, superior in obligation to any other. It is binding over all the globe, in all countries, and at all times. No human laws are of any validity, if contrary to this; and such of them as are valid, derive all their authority, mediately, or immediately, from this original” (Blackstone)…. The fundamental source of all your errors, sophisms, and false reasoning, is a total ignorance of the natural rights of mankind. Were you once to become acquainted with these, you could never entertain a thought that all men are not, by nature, entitled to a parity of privileges. You would be convinced that natural liberty is a gift of the beneficent Creator to the whole human race, and that civil liberty is founded in that; and cannot be wrested from any people, without the most manifest violation of justice.
– from The Farmer Refuted, 1775.
Alexander Hamilton (1755-1804) was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States, a legal scholar, military commander, banker, and economist. The founder of the nation’s banking system, Hamilton was also influential in his interpretation of the U.S. Constitution and a participant in the public debate on that document known as The Federalist Papers. He also founded the United States Coast Guard and the New York Post, and served as the nation’s first Secretary of the Treasury. His second book, The Farmer Refuted, sought to respond to British loyalist critics of the First Continental Congress of Philadelphia, which eventually formed the 13 colonies into the United States.