They tell us, sir, that we are weak - unable to cope with so formidable an adversary. But when shall we be stronger? Will it be the next week, or the next year? Will it be when we are totally disarmed, and when a British guard shall be stationed in every house? Shall we gather strength by irresolution and inaction? Shall we acquire the means of effectual resistance by lying supinely on our backs, and hugging the delusive phantom of Hope, until our enemies shall have bound us hand and foot? Sir, we are not weak, if we make a proper use of those means which the God of nature hath placed in our power. Three millions of people, armed in the holy cause of liberty, and in such a country as that which we posses are invincible by any force which our enemy can send against us. Besides, sir, we shall not fight our battles alone. There is a just God who presides over the destinies of nations, and who will raise up friends to fight our battles for us. The battle, sir, is not to the strong alone; it is to the vigilant, the active, the brave. Besides, sir, we have no election. If we were base enough to desire it, it is now too late to retire from the contest. There is no retreat, but in submission and slavery! Our chains are forged, their clanking may be heard on the plains of Boston! The war is inevitable - and let it come!! I repeat it, sir, let it come!!!
It is in vain, sir, to extenuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, peace, peace - but there is no peace. The war is actually begun. The next gale that sweeps from the North will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms! Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle? What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me -- give me liberty or give me death!"
Patrick Henry, March 23, 1775
Under British rule violations of law were dealt with by constables and magistrates. There was no ‘police force’, so whenever force was needed to apprehend an accused criminal, the citizenry, under the ‘posse comitatus,’ would assist the constable. When the citizenry would not comply, or other circumstances warranted a larger force, the army was called. The army had to be requested by the Governor, and approval given by the General officer over the troops. This was predicated on an old English concept that the military authority SHALL BE SUBORDINATE to the civil authority.
In March, 1775, General Gage commanded about 5700 men with which to provide ‘police powers’ and defense of an estimated 3 million colonists within the colonies. This calculates to less than 2.9 ‘law enforcement officers for every one thousand people.
In 1991, the FBI reported that there were 2.8 local ‘law enforcement officers’ for every one thousand people. This number doesn’t include corrections officers, civilian staff. or federal alphabet agencies, nor does it include the military, which comprises 9.9 per one thousand. We more closely achieve Patrick Henry’s concern of the number of "guard[s] ... stationed in every house."
As we grasp at the "illusive phantom of Hope" we seem to fail to recognize that the government is more fearful of its people than at any time since well into the War of Independence. Congressional hearings -- offered as an appeasement; BATF sending a warning to all law enforcement agencies advising them to be cautious around militia personnel (See April 25, 1995 Outpost of Freedom release); increased security at the White House, including closing a portion of Pennsylvania Avenue -- in a free country?; and, the rampant growth of militia and common law courts -- especially since April 19, 1995.
The question arises -- With all that is going on in the courts and with more representatives listening to us, isn’t it just a matter of time before we return to a Constitutional Republic?
This is a question that cannot be answered, until it is too late if the answer is found to be in the negative. We can, however, look at what has occurred over the past fifty years (since efforts first began, in earnest, to convert back to a proper form of government) and we will find that there is not one single year in which we have not lost ground in this effort. The current year provides an excellent example. With all of the talk about how well we are doing, we fail to recognize that HR 97 (The Rapid Deployment Strike Force Act); HR 666 (Exclusionary Rule Reform Act of 1995); HR 3355 (Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994); HR 667 (Violent Criminal Incarceration Act of 1995); HR 729 (Effective Death Penalty Act of 1995); HR 896 (The Omnibus Counterterrorism Act of 1995); HR 1544 (Domestic Insurgency Act of 1995); EO 12949 (Foreign Intelligence Physical Searches); and others, have all been submitted and are likely to pass Congress this year (except the EO and PDD, which are proclamations of King Bill). Each of the above mentioned acts are encroachments upon the Constitution, and each violates the requirement for an AMENDMENT to modify the Constitution, which amendment must also be ratified by the States. Instead we have a Congress (parliament) that is foreign to our form of government, otherwise it would be desirous of abiding by the very Constitution which created it.
We continue to vainly presume that we have found an answer -- a solution to the problem at hand. We have closed our eyes to the inevitability and the course of those behind the government. After 180 years of effort to bring the United States of America back under British domination, they are not likely to submit to these feeble efforts of ours to regain a small degree of control over our own destiny by returning to that Constitutional form of government.
We must recognize the severity of the problem, and we must recognize that "[t}here is nor retreat, but in submission and slavery!" Until we are able to make the commitment that was made by our Founding Fathers we will never have the strength and moral courage to succeed at our task. We must accept the conditions, as they are so obvious before us, that we are in a condition of war with the government, of which there is no solution save victory, or defeat.
Many have argued that we have no chance against a force as powerful as the us government. These same arguments permeated the conversations of two hundred years ago as a rag tag army, under General George Washington, first held at bay, then began to achieve victories over the greatest military force the world had ever known.
This victory was achieved not by a reliance on God to fight the battles, but on faith in God to give the Americans the courage to fight and achieve that victory. Not by standing idly by and waiting for God to join the battle, but knowing that by the grace of God, the American cause was just, and regardless of the consequences to each individual, God’s will would prevail and our posterity would have the opportunity to live in a new order of the ages in which man, each and every man, was as much a part of the government as any other man. It will be with the recognition of this very concept (that each man is equal in the government) that we will again restore the blessings of liberty to this great nation. When Bill Clinton realizes that he works for us, and has failed in recognizing our desires; When each member of Congress realizes that he works for us, and has failed in recognizing our desires; when each administrative agency official realizes that he has a job to serve, not to rule; and when we recognize that we have also failed at our responsibility to maintain a constant vigil on the actions of government -- then, and only then, will we regain those blessings of Liberty.
The first step in this battle is to make that commitment that Patrick Henry spoke of nearly a month before the first hostilities at Lexington and Concord -- nearly fourteen months before a declaration of war was made in Our Declaration of Independence. When each of us is willing to commit to the concept of LIBERTY or Death -- then we will have truly begun to achieve our goal
[source: Orlando Sentinel World Almanac, 1989]
Return to Sons of Liberty Index
Go to Next Sons of Liberty
Go to Previous Sons of Liberty