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XYZ Affair & Alien and Sedition Acts

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by

Cale Garber

on 12 December 2014

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Transcript of XYZ Affair & Alien and Sedition Acts

- U.S. merchants have been allowed to trade with
Britain and France again, despite French Revolution

- France begins seizing US navy ships headed for
Britain
- Adams sends representatives to France to negotiate
a peaceful solution
- France demands a bribe from the US in order to
stop seizing ships

- Adams says "NO WAY"
- The US is willing to pay millions to defend itself, but
won't pay 1 cent toward a bribe (tribute).
- To conceal the identity of the French who
offered the bribe, Adams changes their names
to "X, Y, and Z" in official documents
- one belonging to a foreign country
- any speech or language that incites a rebellion
- allowed the arrest of anyone who spoke out against the government, which targeted French-Americans and Democratic-Republicans
- to suppress any support of France (mostly Republicans)
“That if any person shall write, print, publish, or willingly assist or aid in writing, printing, or publishing any false, scandalous and malicious writings against the government of the United States, shall be punished by a fine not exceeding two thousand dollars, and by imprisonment not exceeding two years.
“That it shall be lawful for the President of the United States, whenever he may deem it necessary for the public safety, to order any foreigner whose homeland is at war with the United States to be imprisoned.”
"The Attorney General shall take into custody
any alien who is engaged (or believed to be
engaged) in any activity that endangers
the national security of the United States.”
The 2001, Patriot Act
Full transcript