Renewing the American Spirit

Patriot Week begins on 9/11 and ends on 9/17 (the anniversary of the signing of the Constitution (Constitution Day)) and renews America’s spirit by celebrating the First Principles, Founding Fathers and other Patriots, vital documents and speeches, and flags that make America the greatest nation in world history. Many of current holidays have become overly commercialized or have lost their deeper meaning. We need to invigorate our appreciation and understanding of America’s spirit. This blog is dedicated to keeping the spirit of Patriot Week - and America - alive all year long.....

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Liberty! For Our Ancestors and Posterity? Really!

"Stain not the glory of your worthy ancestors, but like them resolve never to part with your birthright; be wise in your deliberations, and determined in your exertions for the preservations of your liberties. Follow not the dictates of passion, but enlist yourselves under the sacred banner of reason; use every method in your power to secure your rights; at least prevent the curses of posterity from being heaped on your memories." Joseph Warren (1772).

Joseph Warren was part of the Sons of Liberty in colonial Massachusetts who rebelled against British oppression.  In league with Samuel Adams, John Adams, and John Hancock, he was a leading light of the American Revolution.  His admonitions may seem somewhat quaint today - harkening to past and future generations as a rallying cry for liberty?  Really?

Really. Warren tapped into an eternal truth that is too often overlooked today.  We owe our freedom to the sacrifices of generations before us, and we - in just a few years - can lose it all.  If so, following generations will look back at our era and scorn what we did. In the twitter world (and yes, I'm tweeting this blog), we often forget that there is more than the present and 140 characters.  There are enduring values and struggles that deserve "every method in" our power to preserve liberty.  

Warren was not kidding.  He was killed at the Battle of Bunker Hill.  Honor his legacy, and your children's, and "resolve never to party with your birthright" of the First Principles of the rule of law, unalienable rights, limited government, equality, the Social Compact, and revolution.

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Monday, March 18, 2013

Educate for Liberty or Lose It!

"The philosophy of the school room in one generation will be the philosophy of the government in the next."  Abraham Lincoln.

Lincoln's admonition still rings true today.  Unfortunately, over the course of the last couple of generations, we have been denigrating American history and civics.  We have lost sight of not only facts and figures, but our foundational history.

No wonder our students are struggling to understand the basic precepts of our Constitution, and our politicians fail to respect it.  

Lincoln warned that our greatest threat was suicide - the end of country as a free people because we destroyed it from within. 

We need to combat this now before its too late.  One step is Patriot Week - check it out at  Also, learn about our founding First Principles and how to keep them alive at

Sunday, March 17, 2013

The Sacred Call of Duty

"The only principles of public conduct that are worthy of a gentleman or a man are to sacrifice estate, ease, health, and applause, and even life, to the sacred calls of his country. These manly sentiments, in private life, make good citizens; public life, the patriot and the hero." James Otis (1761)

James Otis held a position in the British Empire most would covet.  He was the leading lawyer for the crown in the colonies.  When British began to oppress the colonists by authorizing Writs of Assistance (which in essence, were open ended warrants which allowed customs officers to search and seize person and property without any requirement that there be probable cause for such actions), he was asked to defend them as the Advocate-General.  

Instead, Otis quit and took up the side of those who challenged the legality of the writs.  He walked away from wealth, power, and position to do what was right in defense of our unalienable rights.  In his famous attack on the Writs in 1761, he explained that a man's house - no matter how humble - was his castle, and that the crown had no right to ransack it at will. He remarked that the writs were an instrument of "slavery" and "villainy," constituting "the worst instrument of arbitrary power, the most destructive of English liberty and the fundamental principles of law that ever was found in an English law-book."

Otis declared that his sacrifice was a call of duty, and the essence of patriotism.  His bold opposition was one of the sparks that eventually lit the American Revolution.  

How much we have forgotten, how far we have fallen.

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Tuesday, March 12, 2013


"No man has the right to be idle. Where is it, that in such a world as this, health and leisure and affluence may not find some ignorance to instruct, some wrong to redress, some want to supply, some misery to alleviate."  William Wilberforce
Steeped deeply in Christian virtue and believe, William Wilberforce retired from the English Parliament and fought to end the slave trade in England for over 20 years.  Once that task was completed, he labored for another 25 years to emancipate the slaves.  His unyielding passion and zeal led to the demise of slavery just a few days before his death.  

Although we cannot all have the impact or drive that he did, we all should be inspired by his unselfish commitment to liberty and equality.  The world will be a better richer if we tune out of idle distractions so easily alluring to us today.  Listen to Wilberforce.  Act!

To know what to act for, visit and

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Votes for Women?!?

100 years ago today, the Suffragette movement took the world by storm by engaging in the first major civil rights march in Washington, D.C. in history.  Thousands of suffragettes marched down Pennsylvania Avenue on March 3, 1913 demanding "Votes for Women."  Drawing women from across the country, it had several components, including striking displays of "Columbia" and similar extravagant displays.

Stealing the spotlight from President Wilson's inauguration the next day (he arrived in D.C. the day of the parade), the tactics were condemned, the message mocked, and the women assaulted by a huge hostile crowd.

The violent outbreak that ended the parade led to Congressional hearings and the firing of the D.C.'s police chief, and more importantly, to huge publicity for the suffragette movement.  The brainchild of Alice Paul and organized by the American National Woman Suffrage Association, the parade paved the way for increasingly aggressive tactics, and the ratification of the 19th Amendment, giving women the right to vote, effective on August 26, 1920.

We owe much to the brave women who upended Washington, D.C. a century ago.

To learn more about the First Principle of equality and the great Patriots, documents, and flags that made it so, visit and