August 28, 2013
By Tammy Derouin
Change is difficult. Even the Declaration of Independence acknowledges by way of experience or history, “…that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.”
Acknowledging a problem is the first step to resolving the issue. We toss ideas around and try to figure out the best course of action. The most difficult part is waiting. Once you’ve identified the problem and have sorted through all your options a decision has to be made. The higher the stakes the more thought it takes. Eventually we get to a point when we realize we have to move but it’s still difficult. What will be lost? What will be gained? Will I survive the battle? How many will be affected and to what degree?
Change, even if we know it’s the right thing to do, is difficult. But where would we be without it? The Magna Carta was a very bold statement. Life would be very different without the courage of those who supported such a revolutionary move. The Declaration of Independence, another bold statement. The colonists were going to go up against the British Empire? Who did they think they were? Why did they think they could win? When the prize is freedom, you fight to the bitter end.
The Bill of Rights is an exceptional statement within an extraordinary document. The Bill of Rights was a compromise between the Federalist and the Anti-Federalists such as Thomas Jefferson. Jefferson was concerned about the federal government taking too much power. Our rights, by way of Natural Law, were spelled out in the form of the first ten amendments. The Constitution would guarantee our individual rights. The government cannot take away gifts which the government never gave. We of course, are proving we can give up such precious gifts. I wonder what Jefferson would think about today’s government?
Looking back, it’s easy to say “they” did what was right and what needed to be done. We have the benefit of knowing the outcome, the colonists didn’t. They had their convictions and beliefs to guide them. When the event took place which overstepped the line they had drawn, a shot was heard around the world.
We all deal with situations in our lives when the extent of what we are willing to put up with is pushed. We have our individual lines. Should one more piece of straw land on the back of our camel, we have outlined a course of action. A shot will be heard in our own little world. Something happened that caused us to act, to say enough is enough. There will be unrest and even chaos for a time. Our little world will suffer some casualties and loss.
When you do what you do because it’s the right thing to do, you find your true friends, your allies. Benjamin Franklin said, “We must, indeed, all hang together or, most assuredly, we shall all hang separately.” The time comes when you have to make a decision. Knowing your convictions and principles lets you know immediately where you stand, no matter the risk, which side of the line you will choose.
Once the smoke has cleared and the battle is over, change has occurred. Even if your side of the line won, there will be losses. Some damage may be repairable. No matter how hard you fight a good fight, some damage is not repairable. Those are the consequence of bad decisions even if made with good intentions. The sooner we realize bad decisions have made things worse, the sooner we can turn things around and make the much needed repairs. Perhaps we can prevent irreversible damage.
We have been fortunate to have the blessings we were given. We must stand together against those who wish to fundamentally transform our way of life. We’ve known for some time that something is wrong. The system is breaking down. How long are we going to ignore the problem? It’s not always easy to know what to do or even who to trust. The extent of what we stand to lose will not really be understood until it’s gone.
If we can’t stand for what is right in our own little world, how will we be able to stand for God and country?
“And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.”
The Declaration of Independence