“Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death”: Liberty Counsel Issues A Call to Revolution (Nonviolently, Of Course)

To say that the Right has completely and totally lost their collective minds over the passage of health care reform would be something of an understatement.

So far this week we’ve seen it compared to Pearl Harbor and 9/11 while right-wing activists have called those to voted for the legislation traitors who should be shot or killed by God.

And now comes the Liberty Counsel comparing March 23, 2010, the day President Obama signed the legislation into law, to March 23, 1775, the day Patrick Henry delivered his famous “Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death” speech calling the nation to revolution:

President Obama said he was not concerned about the process but about the end result. In other words, the end justifies the means.

Responding to similar arbitrary abuses of power by the King of Great Britain that threatened life and liberty 235 years to the day, on March 23, 1775, Patrick Henry delivered his fiery speech to the Virginia House of Burgesses at St. John’s Church in Richmond. In part, Henry intoned, “If we wish to be free…, we must fight!” Reaching the crescendo of his speech, he declared, “Sir, we are not weak if we make a proper use of those means which the God of nature hath placed in our power. The millions of people, armed in the holy cause of liberty, and in such a country as that which we possess, are invincible by any force which our enemy can send against us. Besides, sir, we shall not fight our battles alone. There is a just God who presides over the destinies of nations, and who will raise up friends to fight our battles for us.” Henry then concluded, “The battle, sir, is not to the strong alone; it is to the vigilant, the active, the brave. Besides, sir, we have no election. If we were base enough to desire it, it is now too late to retire from the contest. There is no retreat but in submission and slavery! Our chains are forged! Their clanking may be heard on the plains of Boston! The war is inevitable – and let it come! I repeat it, sir, let it come.”

Henry’s speech is credited with convincing the Virginia House of Burgesses to commit troops to the Revolutionary War. His “Liberty or Death” slogan was soon emblazoned on the Culpepper Flag, which became the flag of his first regiment of the 100 minutemen.

Mathew D. Staver, Founder of Liberty Counsel and Dean of Liberty University School of Law, said: “What a difference 235 years makes in American history. The threat to life and liberty has come full circle. Like then, the American people love life and liberty and hate arbitrary abuse of power. Then, like now, powerful leaders stirred up the people to realize they must be vigilant to defend their freedom. There has not been a day in the presidency of Barack Obama in which the people have been free of strife and discord. The Declaration of Independence says that the people are willing to suffer many abuses, but there comes a time when it is their right – it is their duty – to push back. That time is now. The people must channel their anger through nonviolent means to change the leadership and the direction of America.”

I love how Liberty extensively quotes Henry’s call to arms and revolt against tyranny and relates it directly to President Obama as a “threat to life and liberty,” only to then say activists must find “nonviolent means” to topple our government.