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Standing Armies And Their Quartering In 2014

31 May 2014 @ 02:05

Two of the issues that most angered the Patriots of Boston in the 1760’s and 1770’s were the presence of standing armies among the civilian population and the lodging of the members of the British Army in civilian neighborhoods and, eventually, as forced tenants in the houses of it’s citizens.

In America, the location of military resources and day-to-day operations are required to be in bases cordoned-off from areas where civilians live.  When off-duty members of the military travel outside of their bases to destinations in the civilian areas, they are subject to the civil and criminal laws as if they were regular citizens.

These law, regulations, and practices were born out of the justified concerns of The Founding Fathers that standing armies placed among the civilian population were an invitation to said armies being used by politicians to enforce unjust laws, policies, and regulations, and impose their Will on the Sovereign People.  Throughout History, as the Founders well knew, Tyrants had used military forces to suppress those who had taken up the cause of Freedom and Liberty.  They had seen first-hand the wicked and oppressive use of such forces against themselves by the British and, therefore, they wanted to ensure that such a situation would be very hard to implement in the newly created nation of The United States Of America.

Writing in the Boston Gazette issue of 17 October 1768, Samuel Adams, remarking on the Quartering Act, wrote [paragraphing mine]:

…No man can pretend to say that the peace and good order of the community is so secure with soldiers quartered in the body of a city as without them.

Besides, where military power is introduced, military maxims are propagated and adopted, which are inconsistent with and must soon eradicate every idea of civil government. Do we not already find some persons weak enough to believe, that an officer is oblig’d to obey the orders of his superior, tho’ it be even AGAINST the law! And let any one consider whether this doctrine does not directly lead even to the setting up that superior officer, whoever he may be, as a tyrant.

It is morever to be observ’d that military government and civil, are so different from each other, if not opposite, that they cannot long subsist together. Soldiers are not govern’d properly by the laws of their country, but by a law made for them only: This may in time make them look upon themselves as a body of men different from the rest of the people; and as they and they only have the sword in their hands, they may sooner or later begin to look upon themselves as the LORDS and not the SERVANTS of the people: Instead of enforcing the execution of law, which by the way is far from being the original intent of soldiers, they may refuse to obey it themselves: Nay, they may even make laws for themselves, and enforce them by the power of the sword! Such instances are not uncommon in history, and they always will happen when troops are put under the direction of an ambitious or a covetous governor!…

These same arguments can be observed being made again and again during this time.  And they would continue to resonate and be recycled throughout the early decades of The American Republic’s existence.

Eventually, as practices designed to prevent such Tyrannical use of the Military became long-standing and achieved the status of tradition, the fear subsided.  However, it still lived in the back of the minds of vigilant Americans.

Sadly, in the past few decades, for various and varied reasons, most of us — even those of us who have been engaged in the struggle to preserve The American Republic — have let that justified fear of standing armies and their quartering among the civilian population be deactivated.  Many of us did so as a result of our noble support for law enforcement as it fought to preserve Law And Order when it began breaking down in the 1960’s.  We had watched rioters and radicals attempting to create Chaos.  We had watched the rioters’s fellow traveller radicals in suits with briefcases use the courts and legislatures to impose unworkable restrictions on our law enforcement officials and persecute those police officers who utilized Common Sense in the carrying out their duties — duties that we, the Sovereign People, had assigned to them.  In our Virtuous desire to support Law Enforcement, we went too far and forgot the danger such forces in the hands of those with Evil intentions pose to our Freedoms and Liberties.

So, we find ourselves in the year 2014 facing a situation very similar to that faced by the British citizens living in the American Colonies in the mid-18th Century.

Since we live in an age where erecting buildings is fairly cheap and where our enemy is not some foreign army that has been brought to our shores and needs quartering, the physical reality has changed, but the spirit of what is happening remains the same as it was in 1768 and 1774.

The standing para-militarized law enforcement agencies and police departments of 2014 and the enforcement arms of branches of the national [and state] governments, like the EPA, the IRS, the BLM, and the Department Of Agriculture, are the standing armies of 1768/74 reborn.  Dressed in uniforms designed for use on the battlefield and using equipment conceived for use by soldiers in war, these civilian troops are being used by politicians to enforce encroachments on our Rights as Americans, to terrorize civilians, and to instill a fear that leads to voluntary submission to Tyrants who run our governments.

Instead of being quartered forcibly in our own homes, these troops own homes in our neighborhoods next to ours. Instead of doing the bidding of King and Parliament, these enforcers of ‘the Law’ are doing the bidding of politicians seeking to enslave us. Unlike the lobster-backs of 1768/74, these law enforcement troops are unionized and their unions are engaged in corrupt bargains with the Statist Politicians.

Too many of the civilians who, out of a desire ‘to protect and to serve’, joined law enforcement organizations have been turned against those very people who they have been charged with protecting and serving as designated guardians of Law And Order.  They have forgotten that the ultimate Power rests in the bosoms of the Sovereign People and not with bureaucrats and politicians.  They have chosen to make common cause with those who would enslave all of Mankind.  As Jeff Goldstein wrote:

To those of you who believe that the vast majority within the law enforcement community will turn on a tyrannical government should the shit ever really hit the fan and, forced to choose between the constitutional support of the citizenry and those barking out orders and paying their salaries, that they are natural allies to the citizenry … well, I’m afraid you haven’t been paying attention. Many, of course, will. But many, drunk on power and in control of vast reserves of firepower, will let their inner bullies shine through.

The Founders refused to acquiesce in the British Government’s attempt to impose de facto Martial Law on them.  They refused to accept the presence of standing armies and their quartering among civilians.  They refused to become the willing slaves of Tyrants.

If we dare to call ourselves ‘Americans’ so must we.

OUTLAW.

________________________________

Some background and examples of the kind of Tyranny written of above:

Remember Obama’s Civilian National Security Force? by Doug Mainwaring

Memo outlines Obama’s plan to use the military against citizens by Bill Gertz

The militization of law enforcement, local and federal, continues apace by Jeff Goldstein

Andy Griffith Goes Full Robocop by Mark Steyn

9 Comments
  1. 31 May 2014 @ 02:41 02:41

    This is why the policie are distrusted.

  2. Starless permalink
    31 May 2014 @ 08:03 08:03

    A good place to start would be for local taxpayers to ask their sheriffs how often they run into criminals who are so heavily armed that they need equipment designed for fighting AK and IED-wielding jihadis to apprehend them. And, no, b.s. about deterrent value doesn’t qualify as a reason for Rosco P. Coltrane to have MRAPs and grenade launchers ready-to-hand. They’d also do well to ask how much use all of the piles of cool-looking tactical gear and M4s were at stopping UCSB, Newtown, Aurora, etc.

    Frankly, I’m having a hard time understanding how the citizenry can have become so cowed that they’re willing to sit idly by as the “better safe than sorry” excuse is trotted out every time what amounts to squads of storm troopers are used to collect delinquent bills and arrest alleged white collar criminals. Apparently, everyone’s so squeaky clean that they’ve never made a mistake which might put them in the sights of the militarized bureaucracy.

  3. 03 June 2014 @ 09:36 09:36

    “If the police will use force to stop charitable people from feeding hungry people, then there is literally nothing they will not do for their paychecks and pensions.” http://www.christophercantwell.com/2014/05/19/illegal-feed-homeless-now/

  4. 13 June 2014 @ 09:41 09:41

    Bob,

    I have been on my local county supervisor about the over use of SWAT. I’ve also written my state legislators. I’m trying to push to make it illegal for federal SWAT teams to operate in our state, under the 10th Amendment.

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