Wednesday, July 04, 2007

july 4, 1776- july 4, 2007- post for peace

what we started as:



IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of 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.

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.--Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.
He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences
For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor."

what we have become:

































i think that they single biggest threat to democracy and to values in america- is us. in fact, i would go so far as to say that we are the single biggest terrorist threat to the world right now. inflammatory? perhaps. but i think that we have to look at 'american values' a bit more closely and less warm and fuzzily. what is it that america stands for? theoretically, peace, democracy, freedom- but when you look at what we are exporting to the rest of the world- what we have been exporting for decades- you get quite a different picture. we have been content to insulate ourselves from reality because we have it so good here. that is precisely what is wrong with america. we have exported greed and consumerism to the rest of the world. we want what we want- when we want it- and we will stop at nothing to get it. we are the richest nation in the world, figuratively speaking, and yet we are among the poorest value wise. we are not above being bribed or bought- in any level of society. we want to make rich quick and live the good life without putting much effort in. we are not above bullying, threatening and invading sovereign nations, the world bank, the stock markets- to keep things status quo. we don't want to give up our mcmansions or suvs to save the planet- and god forbid we not drink bottled water or get a new cell phone every 6 months.

america is at a crossroads. we have allowed our declaration of independence to fall by the wayside and our ideals to be hijacked by domestic terrorists in our own government. we have allowed our precious constitution to deteriorate almost to the edge of complete disrepair. we have to decide whether we have the courage or the fortitude to do what is right for the world and for this country. we know where we come from and where we are right now. what we have control over is where we are headed. where do we go from here? what can we do to change things? we as a collective whole need to decide this. we need to make our voices heard but we also need to take personal responsibility for our own lives. are we bigoted against minority folks in this country? are we bigoted against immigration? are we attempting to impose our religious beliefs on others? are we willing to go as green as possible in our own lives- to help save the planet? are we willing to lobby for environmental protections on the corporate level? are we willing to be whistleblowers and do the right thing when we see a wrong committed? will we take an active role in our own lives and in the life of america? it is our choice where this country heads. it is our choice to set the course of the next 230+ years in america. what is our legacy? what will we leave to our children and their children? will it be american ideals? or nothing?

10 comments:

Chico and the Man said...

Damn fine post, senorita.

Anita said...

very well said

Chuck said...

WOW!

What could one add to that?

Except maybe...PERFECT!

WTG (again) Betmo!

Larry said...

Excellent post and as usual very well said.

Sarah said...

Another excellent post!

Carol Gee said...

Thanks for including all those enduring words to begin your post. Words really matter, so I'll quote yours here: take personal responsibility for our own lives. are we bigoted against minority folks in this country? are we bigoted against immigration? are we attempting to impose our religious beliefs on others? are we willing to go as green as possible in our own lives- to help save the planet? are we willing to lobby for environmental protections on the corporate level? are we willing to be whistleblowers and do the right thing when we see a wrong committed? will we take an active role in our own lives and in the life of america?
betmo, I really liked this closing recipe for activism. Can I include it in in one of my subsequent posts?

betmo said...

carol- you don't even have to ask :)

Daniel said...

Hopefully your words will be read far and wide, Betmo, and have great impact!

Fantastic.

bluegrrrrl said...

Wow, betmo...very powerful.

I love that you included the declaration of independence...such a tragic contrast to the pics you posted later.

excellent questions to make us think on this independence day.

JollyRoger said...

We are in the grip of the angry cowards.

People have to understand that they (and their supporters) hold most of the world in contempt for not being able to "see it." That ESPECIALLY includes Americans who don't come to understand that these people have ALWAYS been right, and they've ALWAYS been misunderstood. If we can't see how right they are, then we are as dangerous as Osama, as far as they are concerned.

Since the lot of them are cowards, of course, they've enjoyed the last few years of bullying honest people with genuine concerns. But their day has to be coming to a close; the utter incompetence of their monkey Messiah has doomed them.