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'Give me liberty, or give me death!' - Has it ever rang more true?

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posted on Jul, 12 2010 @ 10:20 PM
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libertyonline.hypermall.com...


Patrick Henry, March 23, 1775.

No man thinks more highly than I do of the patriotism, as well as abilities, of the very worthy gentlemen who have just addressed the House. But different men often see the same subject in different lights; and, therefore, I hope it will not be thought disrespectful to those gentlemen if, entertaining as I do opinions of a character very opposite to theirs, I shall speak forth my sentiments freely and without reserve. This is no time for ceremony. The questing before the House is one of awful moment to this country. For my own part, I consider it as nothing less than a question of freedom or slavery; and in proportion to the magnitude of the subject ought to be the freedom of the debate. It is only in this way that we can hope to arrive at truth, and fulfill the great responsibility which we hold to God and our country. 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, which I revere above all earthly kings.

Mr. President, it is natural to man to indulge in the illusions of hope. We are apt to shut our eyes against a painful truth, and listen to the song of that siren till she transforms us into beasts. Is this the part of wise men, engaged in a great and arduous struggle for liberty? Are we disposed to be of the number of those who, having eyes, see not, and, having ears, hear not, the things which so nearly concern their temporal salvation? For my part, whatever anguish of spirit it may cost, I am willing to know the whole truth; to know the worst, and to provide for it.

I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided, and that is the lamp of experience. I know of no way of judging of the future but by the past. And judging by the past, I wish to know what there has been in the conduct of the British ministry for the last ten years to justify those hopes with which gentlemen have been pleased to solace themselves and the House. Is it that insidious smile with which our petition has been lately received? Trust it not, sir; it will prove a snare to your feet. Suffer not yourselves to be betrayed with a kiss. Ask yourselves how this gracious reception of our petition comports with those warlike preparations which cover our waters and darken our land. Are fleets and armies necessary to a work of love and reconciliation? 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; the last arguments to which kings resort. I ask gentlemen, sir, what means this martial array, if its purpose be not to force us to submission? Can gentlemen assign any other possible motive for it? Has Great Britain any enemy, in this quarter of the world, to call for all this accumulation of navies and armies? No, sir, she has none. They are meant for us: they can be meant for no other. 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. Have we anything new to offer upon the subject? Nothing. We have held the subject up in every light of which it is capable; but it has been all in vain. Shall we resort to entreaty and humble supplication? What terms shall we find which have not been already exhausted? Let us not, I beseech you, sir, deceive ourselves. Sir, we have done everything that could be done to avert the storm which is now coming on. We have petitioned; we have remonstrated; we have supplicated; we have prostrated ourselves before the throne, and have implored its interposition to arrest the tyrannical hands of the ministry and Parliament. Our petitions have been slighted; our remonstrances have produced additional violence and insult; our supplications have been disregarded; and we have been spurned, with contempt, from the foot of the throne! In vain, after these things, may we indulge the fond hope of peace and reconciliation. There is no longer any room for hope. 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!

They tell us, sir, that we are weak; unable to cope with so formidable an adversary. But when shall we be stronger? Will it be the next week, or the next year? 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? Sir, 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, and in such a country as that which we possess, are invincible by any force which our enemy can send against us. Besides, sir, 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. Besides, sir, we have no election. If we were base enough to desire it, it is now too late to retire from the contest. 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.

It is in vain, sir, to extenuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, Peace, Peace-- but there is no peace. The war is actually begun! The next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms! Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle? What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? 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!



Has this ever sounded more true? Does this not exactly explain our current problems? Our government is now acting like the British Monarch of the 18th Century and what did they do to the British Monarch? They destroyed them!

[edit on 7/12/2010 by Misoir]




posted on Jul, 12 2010 @ 10:51 PM
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I almost didn't read this thread. I'm really glad I did. It makes me wish there were still men like this in our gov. s&f x 100,000,000



posted on Jul, 12 2010 @ 10:54 PM
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Unfortunately most people would still choose security over liberty. While they may not like to admit it, they still would.

As for me, liberty or death.



posted on Jul, 12 2010 @ 11:51 PM
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Originally posted by time91
Unfortunately most people would still choose security over liberty. While they may not like to admit it, they still would.

As for me, liberty or death.


I am with you 100%. I really wish one of the founding fathers would have coined this gem.

"Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice. And moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue." ~ Barry Goldwater



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 12:27 AM
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reply to post by Misoir
 


Patrick Henry with one of the greatest speeches in history before the House.

I find myself always feeling very close to the feelings of Mr. Henry and of course, Thomas Paine. If I would compare myself to any minds of the Revolution it would be them. They stood defiant to the end in order to hold high the truth of the matter. However, even back then the masses were not as docile and brainwashed to the crown as they are today.

Even with hundreds of Henry's and Paine's running around - it seems that no one can listen with the mind and with reason anymore. The revolution will come, as I have always said - but it will come when the people see the blood of their loved ones on their lawns. Only then will they break free from the trance they are held to.

S&F for a great speech that will never outlive its usefulness in history.



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 12:52 AM
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The only glimmering little nugget I keep is I know,
Change is coming.
And no that is not a Barry quote, well not anymore.



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 05:12 PM
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Originally posted by g146541
The only glimmering little nugget I keep is I know,
Change is coming.
And no that is not a Barry quote, well not anymore.


When people finally wake up and demand that they receive all of the rights that they were legally guaranteed, that will be the change!

Wake up and demand your freedom back! Wake up and demand your liberty back! Wake up and demand your privacy back! Wake up and demand your income back! Wake up and demand your justice back! Wake up and demand your equality back! Wake up and demand your peace back! Wake up and demand your government back! Just wake the hell up!!!!


I was asleep at the wheel, but not anymore. Taxation is involuntary theft, period! Benjamin Franklin put it best;

"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."



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