History Channel’s Sons of Liberty Miniseries

If you haven’t watched this series, I would highly recommend you give it a chance.  I will warn that it takes some dramatic license and condenses the time frame in order to present a tight, three 2-hour miniseries rather than a more drawn out season-long series centered on the men who became known as the Sons of Liberty.

The series is focused on the events leading up to the arrival of General Gates of the British and the formal Declaration of Independence.  Many of the men that would go on to become our nation’s Founding Fathers have prominent roles in this miniseries.  For all of the series’ faults, it does an excellent job conveying the tone and the overarching themes and threats of the time.  It showed the British soldiers more as an occupying army than anything else, but it also showed the patriots as drunks, thugs, and rioters.

During the lead up to the Boston Massacre on screen, you can understand the motivations of either side.  The British, outnumbered and in the midst of an unruly crowd on the verge of violence, had justification in defending themselves.  The Colonists were likewise shocked when they did just that despite their own provocations just moments before.

Where the series has it’s faults are in the details.  Phrases and quotes were spoken by the wrong person, and the series falls short of providing the full discourse and philosophical thoughts that the HBO John Adams’ series so perfectly nailed.  The History Channel’s production though succeeded in showing the events in total and how each side kept escalating the situation until violence between the two was inevitable.

What I want to mention though is that the miniseries did one amazing thing.  It showed that the rebellious Sons of Liberty would have been rounded up and hanged pretty soon after General Gates’ arrival if not for their willingness to fight and their ability to fight on equal terms of the British regulars who marched to Lexington and Concord.  The British had numbers and experience.  The farmers, millers, and minutemen assembled on Lexington Green and at Concord Bridge had neither, but they had weapons with which to oppose and turn away the British Army that day.

What is so often forgotten in the present age is how the colonists were as well armed as the British regulars with privately held muskets, pioneer long rifles, and cannons.  Yes, cannons.  The American colonists were able to defend their right to free speech, their right to assemble, and to be secure in their papers and property, etc etc etc BECAUSE they had arms.  They had weapons, modern military weapons including weapons of such destruction as heavy cannons, and they were equal to those of their oppressors, not weakened civilian grade versions or likenesses.

At one point George Washington at the Contintental Congress was asked what the Massachusetts men could do with General Gage pressing martial law in Boston.  He said to resist.  I don’t know if Ole George ever gave that advice, but if he did, he had to have known that the only means of resistance when your oppressor means to bring arms to bear against you is to take arms up in defense and for that one must OWN, KEEP, and HAVE those arms and ammunition at your immediate disposal.

That is the foundation principle behind the Second Amendment to the American Constitution.

Thank you History Channel for really highlighting that, whether you meant to do so or not, because without those privately held arms, Samuel Adams, John Hancock, Joseph Warren, and the others would be only footnotes in history as traitors to the Crown and the troubles in Boston would have been quashed by the full might of the British Empire before they became full blown rebellion.

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You Are On Notice

I love my country.  I love the people that live here and the ideals codified at the time of the country’s inception, but there comes a time when every man must take measure of what he stands for… truth?  justice?  prosperity?  God?  family?  freedom?  liberty?

With the recent public exposure of the information cataloging of every American citizens’ activities, communications, thoughts, dreams, wishes, supposedly encrypted (you really think the NSA can’t brute force every encryption program commercially available?) emails, instant messages, texts, or browsing history it has become crystal clear to me that someone somewhere in this government is itching to tighten the screws of tyranny once and for all on this country and it’s citizenry.

To that person or persons… consider this your first and final notice.  We stand not for some light and transient cause, but for the eternal cause of liberty, the raging fire of freedom, the ever brilliant light of truth, and the final justice.  I do not fear anything you can do to me because my destiny is etched in everlasting stone with Christ Crucified.

The history of the present King of Great Britain President of the United States and the federal government is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has suspended the enforcement of Federal law and directed the agencies under his control to neglect Congressionally-passed Constitutional laws.

He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

He has directed agencies under his control, including the IRS, DHS, and EPA, to target and harass political opponents with onerous requirements that political allies are not exposed as an unequal application of the Constitution’s equal protection clause.

He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.

He has disregarded the elected legislature and pushed unconstitutional and unlawful measures without the assent of Congress.

He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.

He has willfully neglected the valid national security concerns of a porous Southern border by willfully not enforcing immigration laws or ending the flow of illegal drugs and people from pouring in from a neighboring country in an unstated civil war.

He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers. to deport criminal violations of this country’s immigration and naturalization laws.

He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has intimidated into compliance the non-political judiciary into supporting his policies.

He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.

He has erected and armed a domestic standing army.

He has usurped the authority and jurisdictions of the municipalities and counties to the domestic standing army.

He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.

He has directed the domestic standing army to spy on veterans of the commissioned military.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:

For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:

For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:

For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:

For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:

For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences

For targeting American citizens for killing without trial by jury.

For monitoring and storing every digital communication, the full browsing history, every credit card transaction, and every element of the lives of American citizens in a central database that can only be assembled for nefarious purposes in order to bring the citizenry to its knees through intimidation.

We the People are done.  These tyrannies must stop now. They must be completely irrevocably dismantled and those responsible must face justice for enacting the First American Stasi.

You are violating your contract with We the People and it will become crystal clear to you if you do not cease and desist immediately that the purpose of the contract, the Constitution, was not to protect the American people’s rights, endowed by God and as eternal as He.  The Constitution protects you, the employee, from us.

Declare

If you read this blog, you are familiar, at least on a passing level, of the text of the Declaration of Independence.  You are also likely familiar with history as it progressed from that point until now.  I have written about the God-given rights espoused in that inspired document (Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness), but I elected at that time not to dive into the “injuries and usurpations” part of the Declaration for a variety of reasons.  I have been forced to rethink my own rationale for not tackling that subject in the past.  I find myself compelled to write about the need to live a Christlike life, and yet I shrink from this confrontation because of how murky it can get as we muddle away from unconditional truth into areas made much more murky by politics and the less-than-unbiased lens of personal opinion.

I have been pushed over the edge though.  There comes a time when you have to call a spade a spade, point at the hypocrites and call them out on the mat, or label and define the usurpations and injuries.  For example, modern-day examples of just such violations abound:

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good. (Refusal to enforce Congressionally-passed federal law).

He (and His administration) has obstructed the Administration of Justice (New Black Panther Party Voter Intimidation Case).

He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance. (Unconfirmed “Czars” under the Obama Administration: 33 of 38 appointed)

For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent. (Illegal taxes being levied by Presidential directive)

Will enough eyes and minds be opened and realize these affronts to our founding?  I do not know.

Will people recall that the underpinnings of our founding were not intrusions and oppressions foisted on the American people by a foreign power, but by those that they called their own countrymen?  Our history is replete with people recalling the greater of those past abuses and examples of tyranny, but few recall that while the British people and ourselves are different now, back then, we were all British (or Englishmen as it we would have been labeled at the time).

What I do know is that the spirit of independence will not go out quietly… not everywhere.  Darkness can drop on all of the world and yet the light of Truth will shine like a beacon in the darkness.  The American spirit that binds us as countrymen, the one shared by patriots from Maine to California, from Minnesota to Texas, will not be extinguished by one man, ten men, or ten million men.  Liberty will endure because it is from God, not men.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

It’s not that liberty is the easiest thing in the world to master.  In fact, I would even assert that liberty itself directly opposes any attempt to impose a master, whether one man or a body of legislators and therein lies the deepest foundation of many of the political divisions that split our country.

Declaration – Part One (Life)

Do we live in a Christian nation?  Does the Declaration of Independence even matter any more or is it just a letter addressed to the King of England back in the latter half of the 18th century and relegated to the dustbin of history?

For the next few writings, I want to explore the Declaration of Independence and what it means.  The first section is the most recognizable.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

The Declaration of Independence: A Transcription

The very first sentence of this section speaks of where our rights come from, our Creator – God, and specifically identifies some of them: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.

The simple fact that these rights originate from God, a power above and beyond any assembly of men, that means that they are inalienable or untouchable.  They are beyond reproach and can not be repealed or revoked.

What is life?  Why is that listed as a right?  Doesn’t the concept of being alive constitute having a life?

Medically and scientifically, sure.

Consider these definitions of life:

the animate existence or period of animate existence of an individual: to risk one’s life; a short life and a merry one.
a corresponding state, existence, or principle of existence conceived of as belonging to the soul: eternal life.
Could the Founders have been considering that the right to life that we have been endowed with by God be spiritual rather than physical?  How does the Declaration’s meaning change if you look at our right to life through the lens of Christ rather than the temporary lens of man?
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