The RIGHT No One Talks About
From the declaration of independence, the bill of rights, and letters from the founding fathers, of the once-most-free nation on earth, we see a RIGHT of the people, that no one wants to talk about because of what it entails:
The Right of Revolution
The very opening of the Declaration of Independence we see a shadow of it:
“…it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another…”
Then, in the second paragraph, it hits:
“That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends [Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness], it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government…
” THE RIGHT of the people to…
alter or to abolish it… “
Now, revolutions and abolishing the government is NOT and SHOULD NOT be a knee jerk reaction to something that is oppressive to the people.
These evils should be suffered, endured; and change from within, peacefully, should be sought first and foremost.
“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 the government resists change, grows in oppression, and continues in evil; despite the people’s peaceful attempts to change it…
THEN this RIGHT is justifiably exercised:
“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“
The colonies suffered through these oppression. They tried to get the government they fell under to change its oppressiveness toward them. But, it resisted them. It grew in oppression. So, the time came to exercise their RIGHT:
“and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government.“
And is futile if only a couple of people agree to, it takes an entire community. Roughly 33% of the colonist were pro-revolution and about 13% of the colonist actually participated in the revolution. These 13% of brave, selfless, bold men received support from only more 20% of their communities. And that was it. Everyone else was either comfortable in their peaceful slavery and abuse or were loyalists and received some sort of benefit for being loyal to the crown.
But, we see here, that feelings, don’t trump rights. The feelings of the peaceful slaves, and the feelings of the Loyalist, didn’t trump the feelings of the revolutionaries. The peaceful slaves didn’t want change and the Loyalist didn’t want a new form of government. Yet, the revolutionaries strived for both. The offense of others does not negate what out of necessity, needs to be done.
We also see that the “common good” neglected 1/3rd of the community so that 2/3rds could be comfortable. This abuse and neglect of the smaller portion of the community for the betterment of the larger portion of the community was not a justifiable reason to continue on and endure the government abuse.
What Lead Up To The Revolution
The Stamp Act was passed by English Parliament in March 1765, which put a direct tax on the colonies for the first time. Every single thing, made or mailed to and from the colonies must have an official Stamp, and to get the Stamp, they had to pay a tax. They didn’t complain that the tax as too high, but that it was so low it was more of an inconvenience AND they didn’t have representation when it was passed. Benjamin Franklin testified in Parliament in 1766 that Americans already contributed heavily to the defense of the Empire.
The Sons of Liberty formed that same year in 1765, and they used public demonstrations, boycott, and threats of violence to ensure that the British tax laws were unenforceable. In Boston, the Sons of Liberty burned the records of the vice admiralty court and looted the home of chief justice Thomas Hutchinson. Several legislatures called for united action, and nine colonies sent delegates to the Stamp Act Congress in New York City in October. Moderates led by John Dickinson drew up a “Declaration of Rights and Grievances” stating that taxes passed without representation violated their rights as Englishmen, and colonists emphasized their determination by boycotting imports of British merchandise. Parliament agreed and repealed the tax on February 21, 1766, but they insisted in the Declaratory Act of March 1766 that they retained full power to make laws for the colonies “in all cases whatsoever”. The repeal nonetheless caused widespread celebrations in the colonies.
In 1767, the Parliament passed the Townshend Acts which placed duties on a number of staple goods, including paper, glass, and tea, and established a Board of Customs in Boston to more rigorously execute trade regulations. The new taxes were enacted on the belief that Americans only objected to internal taxes and not to external taxes such as custom duties.
In January 1769, Parliament responded to the unrest by reactivating the Treason Act 1543 which called for subjects outside the realm to face trials for treason in England. The governor of Massachusetts was instructed to collect evidence of said treason, and the threat caused widespread outrage, though it was not carried out.
In February 1768, the Assembly of Massachusetts Bay issued a circular letter to the other colonies urging them to coordinate resistance. The governor dissolved the assembly when it refused to rescind the letter. A riot broke out in Boston in June 1768 over the seizure of the sloop Liberty, owned by John Hancock, for alleged smuggling. Customs officials were forced to flee, prompting the British to deploy troops to Boston. A Boston town meeting declared that no obedience was due to parliamentary laws and called for the convening of a convention. A convention assembled but only issued a mild protest before dissolving itself.
On March 5, 1770, a large crowd gathered around a group of British soldiers. The crowd grew, throwing snowballs at them. There was no order to fire, but the soldiers fired into the crowd anyway. They hit 11 people; three civilians died at the scene of the shooting, and two died after the incident. The event quickly came to be called the Boston Massacre.
In 1771, at Great Alamance Creek, 2,000 Tar Heel farmers called Regulators had led an uprising, the largest armed rebellion in any English colony to that time. They wanted to “regulate” the governor’s corrupt local officials, who were charging huge fees and seizing property. The royal governor, William Tryon, and his militia crushed the rebellion at the Battle of Alamance.
In June 1772, American patriots, including John Brown, burned a British warship that had been vigorously enforcing unpopular trade regulations in what became known as the Gaspee Affair. The affair was investigated for possible treason, but no action was taken.
In 1773, Parliament passed the Tea Act to lower the price of taxed tea exported to the colonies in order to help the East India Company undersell smuggled Dutch tea. Colonists in Boston, Massachusetts, had thrown shipments of tea into the harbor rather than pay Parliament’s taxes on the tea. This came to be known as the Boston Tea Party and word spread of the act all throughout the colonies.
The British government responded by passing several Acts which came to be known as the Intolerable Acts. The first was the Massachusetts Government Act which altered the Massachusetts charter and restricted town meetings. The second act was the Administration of Justice Act which ordered that all British soldiers to be tried were to be arraigned in Britain, not in the colonies. The third Act was the Boston Port Act, which closed the port of Boston until the British had been compensated for the tea lost in the Boston Tea Party. The fourth Act was the Quartering Act of 1774, which allowed royal governors to house British troops in the homes of citizens without requiring permission of the owner.
In June 1774, the Massachusetts legislature issued a call for all of the colonies to meet at Philadelphia to consider these problems. But Royal Governor Josiah Martin refused to call a meeting of North Carolina’s legislature in time (on purpose) to select delegates to go to Philadelphia. So the colony’s Whigs (those who favored independence) formed a provincial congress that sent representatives to the Continental Congress in Philadelphia in September.
Then, in 1774, the the Massachusetts Bay Colony elected ruling council was abrogated and replaced with a British military government under Gen. Thomas Gage, the commander of all British troops in North America. He began warlike operations all throughout New England such as seizing stores of weapons and powder. But, the Sons of Liberty and Committees of Correspondence dispatched Paul Revere December 13, 1774, to issue a warning to local allies.
In 1775, Gen. Gage then received orders to arrest of the Massachusetts Provincial Congress. In a letter to him it stated, “arrest and imprison the principal Actors and Abettors in the [Massachusetts] Provincial Congress.”
In April 1775, British soldiers, called lobsterbacks because of their red coats, and minutemen—the colonists’ militia—exchanged gunfire at Lexington and Concord in Massachusetts. Described as “the shot heard round the world,” it signaled the start of the American Revolution and led to the creation of a new nation.
And then, the revolution began.
What Were Their Justifications for Revolution?
We can take from their justifications in the declaration of independence and the events that took place in history, and see how they were justified in exercising this right.
- The head of the government (The King of Great Britain) refused to let the people create for themselves local laws that would directly benefit them, individually. He lorded power over them.
“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”
“For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever”
- He refused to allow the colonialists the right to be represented in the government.
“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”
“He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people”
“He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people”
“For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent”
- The government then purposefully made it difficult for the people to participate in the system.
“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 refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected”
- The government did not have a fair and just, Justice System, that The People felt was just for their communities
“He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers”
“He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries”
“For protecting them [government Soldiers], by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States”
“For depriving us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury”
“For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences”
- The government imposed a Police-State without The People of that communities consent; not subject to The People.
“He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures”
“He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power”
“For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us”
- The government imposed OTHER foreign authorities over The People, imposing foreign laws not passed by them.
“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”
- The government waged a War against its own people
“He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us”
“He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people”
“He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation”
“He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands”
- The government ignored the peaceful petitions of it’s people and refused to change.
“In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.”
“We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity.”
Then, in conclusion states this:
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.
This made them “rebels” and “revolutionaries.”
In the eyes of the state, they were “domestic terrorists”
In the eyes of the 33% of loyalists, they were “extremists.”
They banded together, organized, formed an allegiance, and were willing to sacrifice their lives, fortunes, and honor for freedom.
Patrick Henry’s speech on March 23, 1775, sums it up very well, in part:
“For my own part, I consider it as nothing less than a question of freedom or slavery… Should I keep back my opinions at such a time, through fear of giving offense, I should consider myself as guilty of treason towards my country, and of an act of disloyalty toward the Majesty of Heaven… Have we shown ourselves so unwilling to be reconciled that force must be called in to win back our love? Let us not deceive ourselves, sir. These are the implements of war and subjugation… what means this martial array, if its purpose be not to force us to submission?… They are sent over to bind and rivet upon us those chains which the British ministry have been so long forging. And what have we to oppose to them? Shall we try argument? Sir, we have been trying that for the last ten years… we have done everything that could be done to avert the storm which is now coming on… If we wish to be free– if we mean to preserve inviolate those inestimable privileges for which we have been so long contending–if we mean not basely to abandon the noble struggle in which we have been so long engaged, and which we have pledged ourselves never to abandon until the glorious object of our contest shall be obtained–we must fight! I repeat it, sir, we must fight! An appeal to arms and to the God of hosts is all that is left us!.. 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?.. we are not weak if we make a proper use of those means which the God of nature hath placed in our power. The millions of people, armed in the holy cause of liberty… 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… 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… 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!”
These “People” formed a “more perfect union” and sought to correct all the things that the previous government failed.
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America. – The Constitution, Preamble
When you look at their justifications in the Declaration of Independence, you see The Bill of Rights.
“shall make no law…”
- “respecting an establishment of religion”
No official state religion, to counter the Church of England’s power in the English Government*
- “or prohibiting the free exercise thereof”
No law can prohibit the free exercise of any religion. There is ZERO authority given to the government to influence any sort or religious practice.
- “or abridging the freedom of speech”
Abridging means to “shorten, omission of words, reduce, lesson, curtail, and deprive.” That means, NO LAW has ANY authority to shorten, omission of words, reduce, lesson, curtail, and deprive speech.
- “or of the press”
No law can abridge the ability to document, write, journal, publish materials in public or private.
- “or the right of the people peaceably to assemble”
Notice they pointed out that this, in and of itself, is a right on its own standing. THE RIGHT to peacefully assemble. NO LAW can prohibit or abridge peaceful assembly. The government CANNOT prevent The People from peacefully assembling.
- “and to petition the government for a redress of grievances”
No law can prohibit or abridge the people’s ability to petition the government “to set right, make up for, remove the cause, exact reparations for” whatever it is the grievance is.
#6 is extremely important. It is what justifies the absolute right of revolution. The government can not say the people exhausting all other peaceful options before resorting to violence. It is then the fault of the government for ignoring the petitions for redress. The People can have a clear conscience that they did everything else possible to avoid this, to avoid exercising this ultimate right.
What happens when the government makes laws prohibiting and abridging these rights and ignores the petitions for redress?
We have the 2nd Amendment:
- “A well regulated militia...”
“Militia” is not a formal national Army. The founding fathers would have just stated Army as they did in the Declaration of Independence. They chose not to use that concept. Instead, the militia here is organized by each state independently, exactly how it was during the revolution. Separate organizations to the Continental Army. The unconstitutional Militia Act of 1903 tried to redefine and reinterpret what a Militia of The People was manipulating the word the idea of “well regulated…”. Article 1, Sec. 16(8), of the Constitution says the federal government must “provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia” but the State is given “the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress.” A People of a State may appoint its own officers, and training their own militia as long as it is done in line with how Congress regulates its National Army; and Congress has to help. But, these State militias of The People “may be employed in the Service of the United States”
- “being necessary to the security of a free state”
The security of [each] state, in the context of the founding fathers, included outside forces, AND internal. They were still dealing with British Loyalists causing all sorts of disturbances. Thus, the militia in that state would respond to remaining enemy forces that they just freed themselves from.
- “the right of the people to keep and bear arms”
Again, the use of another right, in and of itself, is a right on its own standing. The right to KEEP and bear [fire]arms. At the time this was written, The People kept and used military issued firearms. An exception was NOT included in this right. Also, notice it says not to just keep your guns but also bearing them, is part of this absolute right.
- “shall not be infringed”
An absolute statement. “shall NOT be” and the word “infringed” means: “to encroach upon in a way that violates” and “to commit a breach or infraction or trespass.” So not just the idea of taking but the idea of making a small attempt to begin taking…
The idea of the need for the 2nd Amendment is what the founding fathers knew was necessary for THEM to exercise their absolute right to abolish oppressive governments.
The Right of Revolution, includes the RIGHT to keep and bear arms.
Now, consider Congress now.
Are those who are in Congress actually representing YOU?
Are they imposing laws that go against your local communities needs?
Has Congress made the system so complicated and difficult for YOU to actually participate in?
Is YOUR local justice system fair?
Do the Police act as a “standing army” imposing laws you did not participate in creating and act superior to The People of their community?
Does your government and Congress address and fix your Petitioned for Redress, or is petitioning just pointless and vain?
Is your freedom and liberty being abridged by laws and Congress?
Doe you feel like your vote even counts?
Do you enjoy your peaceful slavery or want to live dangerously free?
Remember, it was a peace of paper that revolutionized the government… it was their right to revolt put into action.