Though I have drawn my sword in the present generous struggle for the rights of men, yet I am not in arms as an American, nor am I in pursuit of riches. My fortune is liberal enough, having no wife or family, and having lived long enough to know that riches cannot ensure happiness.
For me, if I have done my duty, the continued approbation of Congress and the Marine Committee will make me rich indeed, and far more than reward me for a life of service devoted from principles of philanthropy, to support the dignity of human nature.
I propose not our enemies as an example for our general imitation, yet, as their navy is the best regulated of any in the world, we must, in some degree, imitate them and aim at such farther improvement as may one day make ours vie with - and exceed - theirs.
I could heartily wish that every commission officer was to be previously examined; for, to my certain knowledge, there are persons who have already crept into commission without abilities or fit qualification: I am myself far from desiring to be excused.
I must repeat what I asserted formerly, that unless some happy expedient can be fallen upon to induce the seamen to enter into the service for a longer term than twelve months, it will never be possible to bring them under proper subordination; and subordination is as necessary, nay, far more so in the fleet than in the army.
I have sacrificed not only my favorite scheme of life, but the softer affections of the heart, and my prospects of domestic happiness, and I am ready to sacrifice my life also, with cheerfulness, if that forfeiture could restore peace and good will among mankind.
It is certainly for the interest of the service that a cordial interchange of civilities should subsist between superior and inferior officers, and therefore, it is bad policy in superiors to behave towards their inferiors indiscriminately, as though they were of a lower species.