A Bit of A Mind Opener

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A Bit of A Mind Opener

Postby JOHN THURSTON » Tue Dec 19, 2006 6:58 pm

It's long, and couched in archaic language and, even though it is "The Exercise for the Militia of the Province of the Massachusetts Bay ---"Not noting the Plimoth Bay Colony--" and therefore deemable as archaic, the spirit of the times even to the Governor's level at the time is worth noting.

'by Order of his Excellency the Captain General-1758":

(I admit I am going to have to look up who the Captain General (governor) was at this time. But, as they said in the Movie: "Nobody Writes like this anymore:)

"As it is the effential property of a free government to depend on not other Soldierly but it's own citizens for it's defence; fo in all such free Government, every freeholder and ever freedman fhould be a foldier.

A freedman that is no soldier does as much in him lyes, that he fhould be no long free; for if the fame same Spirit was to become general, there would be no soldiery with the goverment; and it muft either ceafe to to be defended and fecure in in it's Freedom, or feek it's Defence in foreign Alliance and fo be not longer independent.

Every man therefore who wifshes to fecure his own freedom, and thinks it his Duty to defend that of his Country, should, as he prides himself in being a free Citizen, think it it trueft honour to be a soldier citizen-------"

"Tis base and slavish not to be allowed to bear Arms in his own country's defence------"

" everyman here knows and is particularly expert in the use of the Firelock: 'Tis almost as constantly as constantly in his hand as any of his implements of Husbandry or of his trade----"

I hope to quote more from this enlightening little manual of arms.

While the second Amendments Definition of a "well regulated militia" may have been interepreted in courts as meaning the right of the state government to maintain a militia, it is clear that even acceding to this point, the Colonial Governors of the time may have well expected the general citezenry to be quite familiar with the use of "hif Firelock".

How exactly, one might ask, would this be accomplished in a society that did not allow the ownership and use of 'firelocks' is, of course, to accept that the thoughts above set forth are completely at odds with with the thoughts and expectations of the governor writing foregoing manual and missive to the people of Massachusetts.

Patton, when asked if he could take a particular objective responded, if memory serves: "give me a bush division, and I will do it in days"

A bush division meaning one raised from a portion of America where the practice of "musketry' ,if you will was a familiar to the freedman and the Governor in the above missive apparently took for granted for all freedmen to be familiar with the 'use of firleock (and ons assumes, other weapons of the times.

i understand that times hae changes, but how far, I ask, can we vary from the thinking set forth and still remain a free people.

It was, after all, not a very long time after the dissolution of the Roman Republic (in part a misnomer as Augustus considerd himself only a legalized "First man in Rome") before the legions, albeit not as often as might be thought, could consider themselves as 'kingmakers'.
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Postby f.Channell » Wed Dec 20, 2006 2:41 am

Hi John,

Of course very few people were literate back then so anyone with writing ability was certainly in the upper classes. Even at the time of The Great War I think half the population of the United States were illiterate.

I find it interesting to read small local history books accounts of Militia practice which included several casks of rum and ale, pies made by all the women of the village and lots of betting on the accuracy of each others shooting.
This is what really went on, and what's so wrong with that. Must have been a lot of fun.

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Proud Member of the Massachusetts Militia

Postby Norm Abrahamson » Wed Dec 20, 2006 3:55 pm

John:

As you are probably aware, all male citizens between the ages of 17 and 45, domiciled in Massachusetts are considered members of the Massachusetts Unorganized Militia and stand ready to be immediately drafted in case of insurrection or emergency.

The statute states:


G.L. c.33, §2 Membership
Section 2. The militia of the commonwealth shall consist of all able-bodied male citizens and all other able-bodied males who have declared their intention to become citizens of the United States, between the ages of seventeen and forty-five, and who are residents of the commonwealth, and of such other persons, male and female, as may, upon their own application, be enlisted or commissioned therein pursuant to any provision of this chapter, subject, however, to such exemptions as are now, or may be hereafter, created by law.

By the way, I lied. At age 46 I'm no longer part of the unorganized militia. The difference between the organized and unorganized militia is codified as follows:

G.L. c.33, §3 Organized and unorganized militia
Section 3. The militia shall consist of two classes, namely, the organized militia, composed and organized as provided in this chapter, and the remainder, to be known as the unorganized militia. The unorganized militia shall not be subject to duty except in case of war, actual or threatened, invasion, the prevention of invasion, the suppression of riots, and the assisting of civil officers in the execution of the laws.

The point of this post is a reminder. Men who enjoy the rights and privileges of citizenship in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts are expected to rise to the defense of the Commonwealth if necessary. I'm sure many, if not most other states have similar statutes. I'm not sure when the unorganized militia was last pressed into service, but I would be surprised if it was post civil war.

Sincerely,

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Postby f.Channell » Wed Dec 20, 2006 5:38 pm

From what I believe I've read even during the Civil War it was all volunteer.

There's an interesting scene in "Gangs of New York" where the immigrants are coming off the boat from Ireland and signing up for the Civil War.
Don't know how factual it was.

Since I'm under 45 Norm, I appreciate having something new to worry about!

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Postby JaySal » Wed Dec 20, 2006 6:26 pm

Hi Norm & John.

Since I am over 45 I guess I am ok.

However, I was wondering?

How does this effect vets? Men that have already served full time in the U.S. military, such as myself (4 years full time Marine Corp).

Take care - Jay
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Mass. Militia

Postby Norm Abrahamson » Wed Dec 20, 2006 7:05 pm

Fred,

I wouldn't worry too much if I were you. As I said, I doubt the Mass. Militia has been mobilized since Shays Rebellion.

Jay,

My understanding is that Veteran Status doesn't matter. Every able bodied male between 17 and 45 who is living in Mass., is a citizen, or INTENDS to become a citizen is part of the militia. Of course, my status as a "retired" member or the unorganized Mass. Militia with 28 years of unconcious service doesn't exactly qualify me for any Veteran's Benefits. Maybe I should call my state rep. and see if I can get me some bennies. :D

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Postby f.Channell » Wed Dec 20, 2006 7:56 pm

I would be on the rebelling against taxes side. :D

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Thanks Norm et al

Postby JOHN THURSTON » Thu Dec 21, 2006 12:46 am

I have been looking for that federal statute but could not find it as i sold my copy of the US code.

I will consider myself a member of the unorganized militia 'till I can't pull a trigger.

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Oops

Postby JOHN THURSTON » Fri Dec 22, 2006 2:28 am

I thought there was a corressponding Fderal statute;

do you know which one Norm?

Hi Jay, hope all is well with you.

John
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Postby RACastanet » Sat Dec 23, 2006 3:46 am

Virginia has an active militia - The Virginia Defense Force - that the Gov. can call up to back up the Virginia Natl Guard...

The VADF takes volunteers from age 16 (with written consent of parents/guardian) through age 65.

The VADF drills once a month and has a summer camp. Pay is minimal and the units are not authorized to carry weapons. They are mostly used for crowd control and traffic management. With the Guard active in Iraq/Afghanistan the VADF has come in handy the last few years.

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Wow

Postby JOHN THURSTON » Sun Dec 24, 2006 1:41 am

rich:

That certainly continues the opening of eyes.

I have always felt that there should be a bit of organization, in which those who do not wish to be part of the standing force or the reserve component, could get some training and/or for veterans to continue their training, should they so desire.

During Saxon times in England the 'fyrd' (ie: militia) could not be called upon to serve in foreign wars.

Of course to the Normans, Normandy and other areas of France were not 'foreign' territory-but to the 'fyrd' helping to maintain the Norman hold on any part of anywhere would not have been high on their list of "things to do".

The Saxons and Angles and other Germanic descendants of "the Saxon Shore" did not look too much diferent from one another to the Normans.

But the 'fyrd' was intended to be a Militia the way we might look at it and, thus, it did not fit in with the "Iron Clad" feudalistic system of the Normans.

There was one campaign in France in which the 'Fyrd' did take part successfully, but this idea of a militia, as such, did not seem to reappear again in Britain for some time.
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Bring this Thread Forward

Postby JOHN THURSTON » Mon Apr 27, 2009 12:45 am

In relation to King Phillips' war.
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Thank You Norm

Postby JOHN THURSTON » Sat Jul 18, 2009 2:59 pm

Hi Norm:

I believe there is a federal statute in the same vein.

It may have been little readings like this that turned the "heller" case in the direction of the legitimate gun owner.

It may bee this case that , in the end, protects us al as I think the PRECEDENT set by the case and the philosophies in the majority opinion was quite explicit on the 'right to keep and bear arms" stating that the 2nd Amendment did not grant the right m but rather that it (the amendment) merely 'codified" the inherent right which is bestowed on all Americans by natural right.

North Vietnam armed (and trusted) nearly civilan in the country side during thr Vietnam War.

In Iraq each house is granted "by law" what they call and "ali baba" (no I am not joking) weapon, including fully automatic weapons, one per each adult male in the household.

Are American therefore less 'free" because of the NFA of 1932? I would have to say yes.

Also, the SJC (Supremme Judicial court) cannot dodge the matter by saying there is not 'case and controversy" as the US SC can do.

they can and may be asked to issue a "declartory judgement " as to the constitutionality " of any law in existence in the Commonwealth.

The wording of the Massachusetts Second amendment is virtually identical to that of the US constitution. So, there WILL be some intereesting cases.

J
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