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I have been out of state for a bit for the funeral of someone who played an integral part in the making of the person that I am today. Life on this planet is fleeting. My advice to any who may care is to be a positive role model for a young person, as they learn and develop into a young adult; be such a good example, as a leader, that when you one day draw your last breath, they will credit you with the good life that they experienced and will follow your lead, paying it forward to the following generations.
With that advice, I am inclined this week to look back at the people who stepped up and took on the mantle of creating our national government from complete scratch. While there were many others, the leading names that every one of us should have been taught while we were in grade school are Benjamin Franklin, Samuel Adams, George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Paine, Patrick Henry, Thomas Jefferson, John Jay, James Madison, and Alexander Hamilton.
These men, along with most of the rest of the colonists that populated the 13 British colonies along the east coast of the North American continent, were just regular everyday people, most with no history in politics. Yet, after the first shots of the American Revolution were fired on April 19, 1775, all were thrust toward a higher calling to represent first their colony and, later, all the colonies united.
While these names should be known to all Americans, most Americans do not know the humble origins of these men. With an almost 50-year gap between the youngest and the oldest, on the day that the battles of Lexington and Concorde began, Benjamin Franklin was just a well-off retired printer who dabbled in science and public service. He was the oldest at 69 years of age.
Samuel Adams was a failed businessman and 52 years old. George Washington was a failed colonial officer that, by age 43, had become a successful plantation owner through his marriage to his wife, Martha. John Adams was a 39-year-old lawyer. Thomas Paine was a 39-year-old government employee.
Patrick Henry was 38 years old and a self-taught lawyer. Thomas Jefferson was a lawyer who was just days away from turning 32 years old. John Jay was a 29-year-old lawyer. James Madison was an unemployed law student that was just 24 years old. And Alexander Hamilton was just a 20-year-old college student, and the youngest.
When the first shots were fired, every one of them woke up that morning firm in their beliefs that they were loyal citizens of the British Crown.
In response to the previous violations of civil liberties by the British government, the First Continental Congress had already met in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, from September 5 to October 26,1774. Consisting of 57 delegates, representing 12 of the 13 colonies, present as delegates in that First Congress were John Adams, Samuel Adams, John Jay, Patrick Henry, and George Washington.
In response to the actual warfare initiated by the British in the colonies, the Colony of Georgia joined with the other 12 to participate in the Second Continental Congress. Then 199 delegates representing all 13 colonies would meet at assorted locations throughout the entirety of the war; from May 10, 1775, to March 1, 1781. Present again were John Adams, Samuel Adams, John Jay, Patrick Henry, and George Washington, plus the presence of Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson and James Madison.
At this point, Isaac Newton’s third Law of Motion had been publicly known for almost a century. While that law described a Law of Physics, stating that “for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction,” it could just as equally be applied to human interactions. In this instance, loyal citizens will react proportionally to the perception of tyranny regarding governmental actions.
I have added my own personal first Law of Politics, wherein when government mandates laws, and then task its agents to enforce those laws, 100% of the time those politicians, or administrators, failed to account for the “Law of Unintended Consequences.” It is a universal law that has been proven time and again, since the beginnings of civilization.
In this instance, the British, in their attempt to seize arms possessed by the militia, intending to enforce peace at the point of the bayonet, instead ignited a full-scale insurrection that led to the loss of their colonies at a cost of more than 250 million British pounds (literally equivalent to pounds of sterling silver) and the loss of 8,500 British; 1,800 Prussian; 1,700 Loyalist; and 500 Natives in actual combat fatalities.
We must not forget that on the day that the first shots were fired, every American colonist had woken up that morning firm in their beliefs that they were citizens of the British Crown. The thing that changed was the actions of those who represented the crown, to enforce the will of the crown upon a populace that had already veered away toward their own destiny.
If it had not been for the orders made by a few British Army officers, followed by their troops, on April 19, 1775, it is most likely that we today would have taken little note of the lives of people like Benjamin Franklin, Samuel Adams, George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Paine, Patrick Henry, Thomas Jefferson, John Jay, James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and so many others.
U.S. history textbooks cite British tyranny as the major cause of our American Revolution, but nothing the government of King George III ever did to the colonists will match the present tyrannies of our federal government under the dictates of President Joseph Biden. When still a candidate running in 2020, Biden had declared that “you can’t legislate by executive order unless you’re a dictator,” referring to the executive orders issued by his predecessor, Donald Trump.
Yet, in the same duration in office, Biden has issued 115 executive orders, or eight more E.O.s than Trump’s 107 E.O.s during their first 28 months in office. By Biden’s own definition, he is therefore also a “dictator.”
Simply put, there exists no authority in our U.S. Constitution for a president to unilaterally make law, for that is the prerogative of Congress alone. Even then, as noted in Marbury vs. Madison, Chief Justice Marshall stated that “a law repugnant to the Constitution is void.” Remember this, as Biden continues to declare his executive orders and pushes for continued overreach by our federal government through unconstitutional action.
My point? As I said above, life on this planet is fleeting. Because of now generational economic incompetence of our national leadership, we are now on the verge of economic collapse. No matter how this plays out, times are about to be hard for everyone. If you’re reading this, I am probably preaching to the choir. Regardless, take a moment and sit down with the young and tell them the stories of the epic achievements by those who founded our nation, and whenever whatever begins, lead by example, so that when the time one day comes to rebuild, there will be those that still hold dear the notions of liberty, freedom and a constitutionally limited government that will pay it forward for future generations.