Sons of Liberty

No 27

May 12, 1997

Amendment IV
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Amendment V
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use without just compensation.

Amendment VI
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining Witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defence.

*************

"At common law, if a party resisted arrest by an officer without a warrant, and who had no right to arrest him, and if in the course of resistance the officer was killed, the offence of the party resisting arrest would be reduced from what would have been murder, if the officer had the right to arrest, to manslaughter. . ."

". . .an arrest made with a defective warrant; or one issued without affidavit; or one that fails to allege a crime is without jurisdiction, and one who is being arrested may resist arrest and break away. If the arresting officer is killed by one who is resisting, the killing will be no more than involuntary manslaughter."

"...where the officer is killed in the course of the disorder which naturally accompanies an attempted arrest that is resisted, the law looks with very different eyes upon the transaction when the officer had the right to make the arrest, from what it does if the officer had no right. What might be murder in the first case might be nothing more than manslaughter in the other, or the facts might show that no offense had been committed."

[John Bad Elk v. U.S., 177 U.S. 529]

In the past week, eight people have been arrested, in two events, one in Colorado and one in California. In both incidents, there are common elements. The press has reported that there was an informant, the charges are of having "arms", the warrants are unavailable and the "crimes" have gone to trial.

It has always appeared to me that the numbering of the Amendments in the Bill of Rights had a significance. The First, for example, gave us the means of conveying our sentiments, the second provided the means of protecting the first. With this in mind, let us look at the Fourth Amendment.

From an historical perspective, the colonists were concerned that their private thoughts, when committed to paper, became a source for British to "discover" their thoughts and who their friends were. The recognition that ones home was his palace and none dare enter was manifest in an Amendment that, then, required specificity (exactly) what and specificity (exactly) where. Even during the early inquisition (Alien and Sedition Acts), private records were not considered fair game for the prosecutor. Evidence had to develop from other sources, and in crimes against the federal government, two witnesses (not necessarily for treason) of the same event were necessary.

Today, we have entered a new era in subjugation. Erased records on computers can be used as evidence, as could your diary, if you kept one. Probable cause can be construed as desirous hypothecation by the prosecutor. Unreasonableness has been turned around so that the only party that might be considered unreasonable would be the object or subject of the search.

The next amendment, declares that only a Grand Jury can issue presentments or indictments for arrest (held to answer). The Amendment also protects us from self incrimination but what of our personal records? Are they not the very means by which charges are brought, and convictions obtained? If my personal records (the ones once held sacred) are brought to court, do I not bear witness against myself? Perhaps "thought crime" is more synonymous with the current form of injustice.

The Sixth Amendment provides for a speedy and public trial. The Colorado "militia" which was arrested last week, is still detained, without communication. They are having a public trial, however, but not, I fear, the sort that was envisioned by the Founders. They, like the five arrested in California, have had certain information released to the press. This information is what might best be considered prejudicial. Claims of automatic weapons, land mines, grenades, other then white mannequins, "hate" documents (say, Constitution, Bill of Rights, Jurors handbook). Of course, the only discernible and show-worthy object was the mannequin, but suffice it to say that the press eats up a good story. This, of course, gives the opportunity for the public to hear "all" of the necessary facts, recognize the association and come to very sound legal conclusions of guilt long before the speedy, public trial which the Constitution declares that we retain the right to.

Now, let"s look at the impartiality of the jury, in the modern context. As we have seen in certain trials, lately, jury selection (of those most likely to convict) has become a fine art. And, of course, it is necessary that you freely admit that you are willing to impose the death penalty on someone BEFORE you can be impartial. Certainly, if you have read the Constitution or the Juror"s Handbook, recently, you cannot be impartial. But, then, laws are for the attorneys to interpret, and so is the Constitution but, not necessarily so.

Just less than a century ago, certain aspects of the individual"s rights, with regard to "law enforcement" was put to the test. The trial judge felt that he could "dictate" the law contrary to the Constitution (and Bill of Rights). His instructions to the jury were, "the deceased, [law enforcement officer"s name], had been ordered to arrest the defendant, hence he had a right to go and make the attempt to arrest the defendant. The defendant had no right to resist him. ..."

I suppose that most people will accept the validity of the above instructions to the jury. After all, aren"t we conditioned to accept the authority of "law enforcement officers"? Surprisingly, until you put this situation in context with the amendments mentioned above, the Supreme Court ruled that the trial judge erred in his instruction to the jury. I refer you to the quotes from the case, above. The defendant, John Bad Elk, was released, a free man.

So, has the law changed? There are no Constitutional amendments negating the Bill of Rights, especially those mentioned. There can be no statutory law that circumvents the Constitution. There can only be a submission to unConstitutional authority, and denial, by us, of our God given rights.

In light of the above, those of you who feel that you may be the object of government persecution because of your beliefs, and possession of lawfully acquired objects might wish to consider that if we are to regain the Constitutional government which is our birthright, we must defend our Constitutionally protected rights, in every way shape and form. Do not submit. The Constitution and the Supreme Court recognize your rights. It is up to you to recognize, also, your rights and to defend them. If your issue is as clear as the driven snow, and if your defense of your rights is Constitutional and lawful, there is no power on earth that will not bring the true patriots of this country to your defense, whether during the initial or subsequent defense of those rights.

Many have died, in the past, to protect our rights. Perhaps the time has come that more must do so. Most assuredly, though, the law enforcement officer that died while trying to take John Bad Elk"s rights is the more desirable contributor to the cause.


Return to Sons of Liberty Index

Go to Next Sons of Liberty

Go to Previous Sons of Liberty