I don’t know how many of you have ever read any Greek Mythology, but when I was a kid my parents bought me a book of some of the more famous myths from the ancient Greeks. Among them was the story of Pandora’s Box. Prometheus and Epimetheus were Titans who had sworn loyalty to Zeus, king of the gods. When Prometheus stole fire from the heavens Zeus took his vengeance on him by creating Pandora and sending her to his brother. Pandora was of exquisite beauty and Epimetheus was stricken and soon married her. As a wedding gift, Zeus gave Pandora a box but warned never to open it. However, Zeus had created Pandora to be naturally inquisitive, and eventually her nature overtook her, and she opened the box; from which all evil and bad things were released into the world. In modern times the myth of Pandora’s Box has taken the meaning of, ‘to start something that has unintended consequences‘, or to use the analogy, ‘open a can of worms.’
Have you ever done something in your life, which at the time you did it seemed like such a good idea; only to regret having done it later for all the suffering or sorrow that it brought you? If so, you could be said to have opened your own Pandora’s Box.
In 1785 James Madison wrote the following, “The free men of America did not wait till usurped power had strengthened itself by exercise, and entagled the question in precedents. They saw all the consequences in the principle, and they avoided the consequences by denying the principle.” Another way of saying this would be, “The free men of America saw what was contained within Pandora’s Box and they refused to open it, setting loose all manner of evil upon society.”
There is an axiom regarding politics that you need to understand, “Once you give government power, they never relinquish that power willingly.” Unfortunately, there is another axiom that goes right along with that one, “Government, once established, will always seek to expand its own power.” I would hope that, by now, you to see why I began this little essay with the story of Pandora’s Box.
I know I’ve mentioned this before, but the Colonies lived happily under British rule for 156 years before they chose to separate themselves from the authority of the Crown. That’s actually quite a long time. In fact, it’s roughly 67% of the total time that America has existed as a country free of British rule. But Thomas Jefferson did not just wake up one morning and say to himself, “I think I’ll write a Declaration of Independence.” Patrick Henry didn’t just roll out of bed with the idea to tell the King of England, “Give me liberty or give me death.” Something had to push these men to the point where they sought to sever the ties which bound them to their system of government.
I sometimes think that people today think that all the events leading up to the American Revolution happened within the span of a single year; leading our Founders to declare their independence and fight a war to secure it. Yet it was more like a decade of repeated abuses that led our Founders to declare their independence.
Our Founding Fathers were a unique group of individuals; each of them had a pretty thorough understanding as to the origin and nature of their rights. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said about the majority of the people who inhabit this country today. Nevertheless, as free men, as SOVEREIGNS, our Founders did not wait until government rescinded laws which violated their rights; they opposed these laws; often violently. What, you think the Boston Tea Party was a peaceful protest with people marching on the sidewalk holding banners? Do you think the tarring and feathering of tax collectors was a non-violent form of protest?
There is a line in the film V for Vendetta when Chief Inspector Finch tells Dominic, “…then Sutler will be forced to do the only thing he knows how to do.” If you would replace Sutler with the word Government, then you will see how government in general reacts when people refuse to obey the laws they enact.”
So it was that in the mid to late 1700’s the King sent troops to enforce his laws upon the unruly Colonists; particularly those in the city of Boston. And there is another scene, in another movie, God’s and Generals, were Robert E. Lee tells Francis Blair, “And I regret to say that the President’s hasty calling-up of seventy-five thousand… volunteers… to subdue the rebellion in the cotton states has done nothing to ameliorate the crisis; it has only deepened it.” The same can be said of the King deploying his Redcoats to enforce his laws upon the Colonists; it only deepened the crisis.
Isn’t that how most fights start? You yell at me, I yell at you. You push me, I push back. Eventually we end up in a fistfight. That’s called escalation; and that’s exactly what happened prior to the American Revolution.
Our Founders believed that they had certain inherent rights that nobody, not even a King, could violate. The King, on the other hand, believed that he had the authority to enact whatever laws he saw fit upon the Colonists. The Colonists resisted, sometimes with petitions to the King, sometimes with violence in the streets. The King upped the ante by sending troops to restore order. The Colonists took offense at this and often harassed the Kings men. You do remember the story of the Boston Massacre, don’t you; where unruly Bostonians assaulted a sentry and the British soldiers opened fire on the crowd.
If there is one thing about the American Revolution you need to know, it is this; not everyone in America supported the concept of independence; and even fewer actually took up arms to secure it. There were those who remained loyal to the Crown until the end. Some of them remained in the Colonies, and others fled to England when tensions got to the point they no longer felt safe living a hotbed of political unrest.
I have heard it said that only one-third of all the Colonists supported independence; that one-third opposed it; and that one-third didn’t care one way or the other. I have also heard that out of those who supported independence, only 3% actively worked to achieve it; either by writing the documents which declared our independence, or taking up arms against their oppressors.
I tell you this because I have heard people say that another revolution simply could not happen in America today. You’re fooling yourself if you truly believe that; it could, and probably will if our government does not stop passing laws which violate our rights. There will come a time when someone, or some group of people, say enough is enough, and that’s all it will take for violence to erupt across the nation. People are fed up with all the laws governing what they can and cannot do; and it does not help matters that the general public supports the passage of even more laws which further enslave them to their government.
That’s why I posted that quote by Madison, to show that the Founders of this country saw the danger of allowing government to begin passing laws which they felt violated their rights; they saw the consequences and denied the principle behind the passage of such laws. We not only cannot see the consequences, we embrace the principle that our government may do whatever is deemed to be in the best interest of the country, or the people.
This is not a Republican or Democrat issue, this is an issue of liberty versus tyranny. George Washington was the only president ever elected to not be a member of any political party, or faction. Yet it was during his administration that the first violations to the Constitution began; and they have never stopped coming ever since. Washington opened Pandora’s Box, and not a single president or Congress has even made the effort to try and close it since.
You would do well to read of the debates that ensued when it was proposed that the federal government assume the debts of the States after the American Revolution. You would also do well to read about the unlawful use of the militia to suppress the Whiskey Rebellion in Pennsylvania. Of course you would do well to just pick up a copy of the Constitution and read it too; but I don’t see too many people doing that either.
If someone you knew threw a party and when you got there you were told that there were two pitchers of Kool Aid; one red one blue, but both contained poison, would you drink from either? I would hope not, but with kids eating Tide Pods today, I can’t be sure of anything anymore. Anyway, that’s how I look at our election process; we are given the choice or red or blue tyranny; and the people flock to the polls to choose who will be their masters. It’s beyond ridiculous; it’s insane!
Republicans decried Obama’s signing of the Affordable Care Act; calling it unconstitutional. But now that they have ‘their man’ in the Oval Office, it’s okay for him to propose his own version of the same kind of unconstitutional law. You know another thing you would do well doing; look up the word hypocrite in the dictionary.
Now the call is going out for tougher gun laws; to punish the innocent for the crimes of an individual. The ignorance and naivety of people today makes me sick. They want to take away our freedom of speech and expression because the truth offends the weak. They want to take away our ability to defend ourselves against tyrants because they are afraid some nut job is going to bring a gun into their community and open fire upon innocent people.
Why don’t people just admit that they want to be slaves and put on their shackles and be done with all the pretenses of being free men and women? But while you stand there pledging your allegiance to tyrants, if you look around, you won’t see me standing there beside you. While you grovel at the altar of big government you won’t see me on my knees trying to get my slice of the handouts they are offering. I know what my rights are and I refuse to support any entity that seeks to take them away from me.
If that means that I will live the life of an outlaw, or an outcast, then so be it. As Patrick Henry once said, “Perhaps an invincible attachment to the dearest rights of man, may, in these refined, enlightened days, be deemed old fashioned: If so, I am contented to be so: I say, the time has been when every pore of my heart beat for American liberty, and which, I believe, had a counterpart in the breast of every true American.” (Source: Speech to Virginia Ratifying Assembly, June 5, 1788)
In his pamphlet Common Sense, Thomas Paine wrote, “Society in every state is a blessing, but Government, even in its best state, is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an intolerable one: for when we suffer, or are exposed to the same miseries BY A GOVERNMENT, which we might expect in a country WITHOUT GOVERNMENT, our calamity is heightened by reflecting that we furnish the means by which we suffer.”
It boggles my mind that if government is, but a necessary evil, and if in its worse state an intolerable one, that the people of this country are so ignorant and naive that they think giving government MORE power, and further restricting their liberty is the answer.
As long as you continue to support the system as it exists today; regardless of whether the system is controlled by Republicans or Democrats, you are as much a part of the problem as are those within the system who pass all these unconstitutional laws.
The only solution is through knowledge; through a thorough understanding of how our system was supposed to function, and why it was instituted in the first place. As long as that isn’t common among the voting populace all they will be doing is switching between red and blue flavored tyranny.
~ The Author ~
Neal Ross, Student of history, politics, patriot and staunch supporter of the 2nd Amendment. Send all comments to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you liked Neal’s latest column, maybe you’ll like his latest booklet: The Civil War: (The Truth You Have Not Been Told) AND don’t forget to pick up your copy of ROSS: Unmasked – An Angry American Speaks Out – and stay tuned – Neal has a new, greatly expanded book coming soon dealing with the harsh truths about the so-called American Civil War of 1861-1865. Life continues to expand for this prolific writer and guardian of TRUE American history.