We are again, in our short history, forced to ask ourselves where do we stand.
Thomas Jefferson in 1775 wrote:
"Believe me, dear Sir: there is not in the British empire a man who more cordially loves a union with Great Britain than I do. But, by the God that made me, I will cease to exist before I yield to a connection on such terms as the British Parliament propose; and in this, I think I speak the sentiments of America."
Shortly after he drafted other words that echo through America:
"When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation."
"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."
At this time the country (colonies) had two parties, with a large percentage of the population not fully believing or trusting either. But the basic mindset could be divided into "loyalist to the crown" or "patriot to the cause." Loyalty has been a guiding ideal in my life, like a dog I can be loyal to a fault. However, by the grace of God, I also have reasoning beyond that of canines. I cannot stay loyal to a master, but will be forever vigilant in my loyalty to a cause. As you lay yourself and your loved ones down, recall our proud history. As you read the news, and hear the words of your elected "leaders", no longer simply granted the title of representatives, remember our proud history. Stand loyal your ideals and mans judgement upon you is irrelevant. I for one cannot stay "loyal" to a government that, at every turn, tries to regulate as many facets of life that they can. Meet up face to face, build a network, expand that network. Share, teach and learn. Become a Patriot, and rally others to the cause. A storm is brewing, find shelter and support.
In the CRISIS No.1 Thomas Paine wrote:
THESE are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value. Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods; and it would be strange indeed if so celestial an article as FREEDOM should not be highly rated. Britain, with an army to enforce her tyranny, has declared that she has a right (not only to TAX) but "to BIND us in ALL CASES WHATSOEVER," and if being bound in that manner, is not slavery, then is there not such a thing as slavery upon earth. Even the expression is impious; for so unlimited a power can belong only to God.
To this day his words ring true, I have some more reading to do!