I’m Standing Up For Free Speech – If That’s A Problem You Know Where To Find Me

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No.: 668. To whom granted and rank: John Faddes, Heir of James Faddes, Privt. No. acres: 640 Service in months: 84 Location and to whom deeded and date of warrant. Within the limits of the lands allotted the officers and soldiers of the Continental Line, by Law, 1783, Oct. 14: Apr. 26 : Jno. Gray Blount Self”

That’s the text of a land warrant, in this case, a grant of land to a distant ancestor of mine, James Faddes, for his service in the Continental Line of what would become the State of North Carolina during the American Revolutionary War. The land in question was in all likelihood in what is now known as Tennessee. James could not take possession of the land. He died on a British prison ship in the harbor of Charleston, South Carolina circa 1780, so the land went to his son, John.

At the time of the Revolution, the Family Faddis had charitably been in the Americas for twenty-five years. They were poor Scots-Irish who had come to the Colonies, like so many others, searching for a place where they could own land and live free. As evidenced by the variation in the way they spelled their family name they were borderline illiterate.

The fact that they had come here did not mean they had run away from anything. It meant they, like the millions of immigrants who have come here since were looking for a place to make a stand. They were looking for a place they could make their own. King George discovered that the hard way when he decided he could bend them to his will.

In Washington D.C. these days there seems to be an enormous amount of energy being devoted to attempting to identify and bring to justice not just those individuals who entered the Capitol building on January 6, 2021  and committed crimes, but anyone deemed to have been “associated” with the 6 January rally. That effort has apparently expanded beyond simply law enforcement channels and now involves corporations, including the Bank of America, which are scouring their records and providing information to the FBI, so it can track down these “domestic violent extremists.” TSA is, according to reports, working with airlines to identify those individuals who pose a continuing danger and prevent them from returning to D.C.

This seems like a lot of trouble. I will save them some time. I was there. Not in the Capitol building or frankly anywhere particularly close to it, but in D.C. on January 6, 2021.

I wasn’t there, because I think the World Trade Center was hit by a missile, think secret military tribunals are convening around the country, or wanted to be part of a coup and install Donald Trump as “Dictator for Life.” I wasn’t there as part of some secret, white supremacist organization out to subvert democracy and create an Aryan paradise. I didn’t even bring a torch or a pitchfork – just a cellphone.

I was there to exercise my rights of freedom of speech and assembly.

I was there because I believe we are in the midst of a titanic battle for the soul of this nation, and that if we are not vigilant and resolute we are going to wake up one day very soon and realize we are living in a real-life dystopian nightmare in which Big Tech, corrupt politicians, massive government bureaucracies and the corporate media run this nation and our democracy has become nothing but a façade.

I was there because every person who has ever studied what would happen if you moved to no excuse mail-in voting and stripped out all safeguards, such as signature checks, postmark requirements, etc. has agreed that the result would be electoral fraud on an unprecedented scale. Put simply, such a system would produce a result, which could not possibly be trusted.

I was there because I knew that the individuals and the groups that pushed to abandon in-person voting and move – in a matter of months – to a system grounded on mail-in ballots, knew exactly what they were doing. They were opening Pandora’s Box, and they were doing it for one reason, to make it possible to steal an election.

I was there because I believe the evidence shows clearly that they succeeded.

So, I went to D.C. I went to the Mall. I talked with people of all colors and all ages from all over the country. I spoke with a nice couple from Southeastern Pennsylvania. I spoke with the folks carrying the “Iranians for Trump” banner. I unexpectedly bumped into a guy I already knew who had come all the way from Arizona to stand with President Trump.

I wandered through the crowd. I listened to the President speak, as best I could. He was some distance away, and his words were often indistinct. I wandered down to Third Street near the Capitol building with the hundreds of thousands of other individuals who were moving in the same direction.

There was no screaming or shouting. There were no cries for violence. I heard not a single threat uttered the entire day. I saw a very large number of people trying to send a loud signal that they no longer trust the system and that they still believe they rule this country – not some self-designated class of elitists.

Then I went home.

So, if you are looking to round people up and silence those who have the audacity to believe this is a democracy, and there really are certain unalienable rights, you know where to find me. I won’t run. James would never let me live it down.

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