Posted by: reformedmusings | July 2, 2016

Independence Day 2016

I found an outstanding exchange from the British Parliament in February of 1765 over the Stamp Act. Here’s the website’s intro to the exchange and the exchange itself:

We had to include this very interesting exchange between Charles Townshend, who would later be author of the Townshend Acts, and Col. Isaac Barre, as reported by Virginia representative Jared Ingersoll.

Colonel Barre was a member of Parliament who had fought in America during the Seven Years War, receiving injuries that left him blind in one eye and severely scarred on his face.

Charles Townshend:

And now will these Americans, children planted by our care, nourished up by our Indulgence until they are grown to a degree of strength and opulence, and protected by our arms, will they grudge to contribute their mite to relieve us from heavy weight of the burden which we lie under?

Colonel Isaac Barre:

They planted by your care? No! Your oppression planted ’em in America. They fled from your tyranny to a then uncultivated and unhospitable country where they exposed themselves to almost all the hardships to which human nature is liable, and among others to the cruelties of a savage foe, the most subtle, and I take upon me to say, the most formidable of any people upon the face of God’s earth. And yet, actuated by principles of true English liberty, they met all these hardships with pleasure, compared with those they suffered in their own country, from the hands of those who should have been their friends.

They nourished by your indulgence? They grew by your neglect of ’em. As soon as you began to care about ?em, that care was exercised in sending persons to rule over ’em, in one department and another, who were perhaps the deputies of deputies to some member of this house, sent to spy out their liberty, to misrepresent their actions and to prey upon ’em; men whose behaviour on many occasions has caused the blood of those sons of liberty to recoil within them: men promoted to the highest seats of justice; some who to my knowledge were glad by going to a foreign country to escape being brought to the bar of a court of justice in their own.

They protected by your arms? They have nobly taken up arms in your defence, have exerted a valour amidst their constant and laborious industry for the defence of a country whose frontier while drenched in blood, its interior parts have yielded all its little savings to your emolument. And believe me, remember I this day told you so, that same spirit of freedom which actuated that people at first, will accompany them still. But prudence forbids me to explain myself further. God knows I do not at this time speak from motives of party heat; what I deliver are the genuine sentiments of my heart; however superior to me in general knowledge and experience the reputable body of this House may be, yet I claim to know more of America than most of you, having seen and been conversant in that country. The people I believe are as truly loyal as any subjects the king has, but a people jealous of their liberties and who will vindicate them if ever they should be violated; but the subject is too delicate and I will say no more. [1]

The Brits never did get it, but man, they eventually got it from us in God’s sovereign providence.

Also in honor of Independence Day 2016, I offer the following A Cappella cover of Lee Greenwood’s God Bless the USA:

I’m a rock guy to the core, but I love that song. Happy Independence Day!!! (and don’t burn your eyebrows off)


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