"How could I be? How can anyone who abhors the oppression of Negroes be in favour of degrading classes of white people? Our progress in degenaracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation we began by declaring that "all men are created equal". We now practically read it "all men are created equal except negroes." When the Know-nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes and foreigners and Catholics." When it comes to this, I shall prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty, - to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocrisy."
Abraham Lincoln letter to Joshua F. Speed (his close friend), 1854.