July 4, 2021 – INDEPENDENCE DAY – “Give me Liberty, or Give me Death!”

On March 23, 1775, Patrick Henry made a stirrring speech at the Second Virginia Convention at St. John’s Church in Richmond, Virginia. His speech addressed the burdens of foreign oppression which subsequently crystallized into the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution.

Photo 201885997 / 1776 © Elena Zakharova /dreamstime_xxl_201885997
Photo 47768877 © Georgios Kollidas /dreamstime_xxl_47768877
PATRICK HENRY (1736-1799) on engraving from 1835. American attorney, planter and politician. Engraved by E. Welmore and published in National Portrait Gallery of Distinguished Americans Volume II ,USA,1835.

Patrick Henry’s speech closed with the famous words: “...give me liberty or give me death”. The sentence preceding those words stated: “Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God!”

Oppression” — “chains and slavery” —  incorporate many forms of abuse, some physical, and inescapably always psychological. The process is usually gradual, lulling the unwary into submission.

In 1775 Patrick Henry recognized that the colonies were already at war. It had crept upon them in myriad forms. Most turned a blind eye, others prepared to fight. The entirety of the speech is a valuable read and highly recommended at this junction in history (links below) .

In 2021 the Constitutional Republic formed 245 years ago faces renewed and parallel challenges, though more subtly cloaked in the tactics of modern warfare, less tactical, and more psychological. The weight of responsibility rests on all shoulders to do all that is possible and necessary to vindicate the sacrifices paid previously in the fight for freedom. For the sake of our children it must be done. Fate is at the door and time does not wait.

Peace can only be maintained through strength, and the strength of America was bequeathed to its people. That strength can (must) never be delegated to others without maintaining constant watchfulness. As often quoted: “The price of liberty is eternal vigilance.” Therein lies the nation’s Achille’s heel, and the answer to reclaiming appropriate power. The fight is for everyone. For the children.

The immortal words of Patrick Henry merit renewed scrutiny.

2021 is 1776.

Photo 187697836 © Famveldman | Dreamstime_xxl_187697836

Links to Patrick Henry’s full speech:
https://avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/patrick.asp

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