It is with a heavy heart that I write this letter to you. Although you have long since passed, I still feel that I owe it to you to apologize for the state this once great nation currently finds itself in. It has been said that George Washington is the father of our country and that James Madison is the father of our Constitution; if that be so, then you, by virtue of the Declaration of Independence, are the doctor which delivered us and signed our nation’s birth certificate.
Although you may have drawn your inspiration from the writings of some of the greatest minds in history, never has such a concise statement regarding the origin of man’s rights ever been penned.
For those who may have never read the words of which I speak, I present to you the opening statements from our nation’s Declaration of Independence.
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.
Not only did your eloquent words explain the origin of our rights, and the purpose for which all governments should be established, your numerous other writings provided a clear concise guide for us to follow so that our nation could prosper and, we the people could retain our liberty. If only we had listened. You once asked, “Yes, we did produce a near-perfect republic. But will they keep it? Or will they, in the enjoyment of plenty, lose the memory of freedom?” I think that by now, wherever you may be, you have your answer, and I am deeply saddened by what the American people have allowed to happen to this once great nation.
As one who has both studied your writings, and had my own political ideals shaped by them, I have tried my best as a modern day scribbler of political rants, to do as you said, “Educate and inform the whole mass of the people… They are the only sure reliance for the preservation of our liberty.” Although I may have opened the eyes of some, there remain millions of people in this country who are blinded to the truth that lies before their very eyes, if they would simply open them.
I am certain that, wherever you may be, you are aware of how far this nation has strayed from the guidelines which you gave us to steer our course. Nonetheless, for those who may not be as aware I would like to provide some quotes, taken from your writings, to show people just how far off course this nation is. Maybe it will do some good, but then I have my doubts.
If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their money, first by inflation and then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around them (around the banks), will deprive the people of their property until their children will wake up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered.
I place economy among the first and most important virtues, and public debt as the greatest of dangers. We must make our choice between economy and liberty, or profusion and servitude.
The maxim of buying nothing without the money in our pockets to pay for it would make of our country one of the happiest on earth.
The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.
To take from one, because it is thought his own industry and that of his fathers has acquired too much, in order to spare to others, who, or whose fathers, have not exercised equal industry and skill, is to violate arbitrarily the first principle of association, the guarantee to everyone the free exercise of his industry and the fruits acquired by it
Warring against [the principles] of the people,… there is no length to which [the delusion of the people] may not be pushed by a party in possession of the revenues and the legal authorities of the United States.
A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have.
The greatest [calamity] which could befall [us would be] submission to a government of unlimited powers.
Single acts of tyranny may be ascribed to the accidental opinion of the day; but a series of oppressions, begun at a distinguished period, and pursued unalterably through every change of ministers (administrators) too plainly proves a deliberate, systematic plan of reducing us to slavery.
RESOLVED: That the principle and construction contended for by sundry of the state legislatures, that the general government is the exclusive judge of the extent of the powers delegated to it, stop nothing short of despotism; since the discretion of those who administer the government, and not the constitution, would be the measure of their powers:
Resolved, That the several States composing the United States of America, are not united on the principle of unlimited submission to their General Government . . . . and that whensoever the General Government assumes undelegated powers, its acts are unauthoritative, void, and of no force.
I see,… and with the deepest affliction, the rapid strides with which the federal branch of our government is advancing towards the usurpation of all the rights reserved to the States.
If people let government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny.
Wherever there are men, there will be parties; and wherever there are free men they will make themselves heard. Those of firm health and spirits are unwilling to cede more of their liberty than is necessary to preserve order; those of feeble constitutions will wish to see one strong arm able to protect them from the many.
When the people fear their government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty.
Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add ‘within the limits of the law’ because law is often but the tyrant’s will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual.
The majority, oppressing an individual, is guilty of a crime, abuses its strength, and by acting on the law of the strongest breaks up the foundations of society.
The judiciary of the United States is the subtle corps of sappers and miners constantly working underground to undermine our Constitution from a co-ordinate of a general and special government to a general supreme one alone. This will lay all things at their feet. … I will say, that “against this every man should raise his voice,” and, more, should uplift his arm …
You seem to consider the judges the ultimate arbiters of all constitutional questions; a very dangerous doctrine indeed, and one which would place us under the despotism of an oligarchy. Our judges … and their power [are] the more dangerous as they are in office for life, and are not responsible, as the other functionaries are, to the elective control.
The tree of Liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.
What country can preserve its liberties if its rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance?
I hold it, that a little rebellion, now and then, is a good thing, and as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical.
The spirit of resistance to government is so valuable on certain occasions that I wish it to be always kept alive. It will often be exercised when wrong, but better so than not to be exercised at all.
Sundry Other Quotes:
All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent.
If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be.
A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind.
As you can see, our country bears no resemblance to the one which Thomas Jefferson envisioned. In fact, were Thomas Jefferson alive today, and a public figure, he would find himself even more ostracized and ridiculed than does Ron Paul. One might go so far as to say that were Thomas Jefferson alive today he would be considered a domestic terrorist, someone who Homeland Security would snatch out of their home and ship them on a C-130 transport to Guantanamo Bay Cuba.
What does that tell YOU about the country we live in today; how does that make YOU feel? Are you proud of yourselves, or do you feel a slight twinge of regret? I feel an overwhelming sense of sadness and shame for what this country has become. I am also sickened beyond words that the people of this country will stand in line for hours to fight over a $2 waffle iron at WalMart on Black Friday, but they won’t take a few minutes of their time to learn what principles this country is founded upon. I am disgusted that people will swallow the lies fed to them by their elected officials and the media, when the truth is readily available. Instead you are too preoccupied with your pathetic entertainment to learn the truth about how screwed up your country has become.
To Mr. Jefferson I offer my sincerest apology for the actions, or lack thereof, of my countrymen; and to those same countrymen, I offer the words of Samuel Adams, who are probably ones which Thomas Jefferson himself might repeat where he here in person, “If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you; May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget they ye were our countrymen.”