The Pittsburgh Press (September 18, 1944)
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (UP) –
Governor Edward Martin said yesterday that the freedoms guaranteed under the Constitution were not self-perpetuating, and required the constant vigil of liberty-loving Americans because they were under the continuous attack by “both foreign foes and by enemies within our gates.”
In an address commemorating the 157th anniversary of the signing of the Constitution, Governor Martin said the framers of the Constitution set up a system of checks and balances designed to insure us against the encroachments of tyranny at home. The two-party system in our national political life was a further safeguard, Governor Martin said.
The governor said that under the Constitution, our country grew to greatness, and that our national government depends upon the indestructibility of the states for its existence. Failure of state and local governments to function properly would destroy the whole structure of national constitutional government, he said.
Governor Martin said that the first three words of the historic document – “We, the people” – proved the birth of a new concept of government, the people have chosen an orderly form of government – “the kind we want to keep and hand down to the generations that come after us,” he said. Any weakening of the Constitution would weaken the structure and spirit of America, Governor Martin said.
The ceremonies at Independence Hall were marked by an hour-long parade and a review of 800 of the state guardsmen.