Committees of correspondence may make a comeback
|From History.com, as linked below.|
The founding fathers were not stupid.
Take the Committees of Correspondence, for example, something I was reminded of via a podcast I listened to recently. They were used to communicate with people over the growing problems with then-governing Great Britain.
Committees of Correspondence were the American colonies’ first institution for maintaining communication with one another. They were organized in the decade before the Revolution, when the deteriorating relationship with Great Britain made it increasingly important for the colonies to share ideas and information. In 1764, Boston formed the earliest Committee of Correspondence, writing to other colonies to encourage united opposition to Britain’s recent stiffening of customs enforcement and prohibition of American paper money. The following year New York formed a similar committee to keep the other colonies notified of its actions in resisting the Stamp Act. This correspondence led to the holding of the Stamp Act Congress in New York City. Nine of the colonies sent representatives, but no permanent intercolonial structure was established. In 1772, a new Boston Committee of Correspondence was organized, this time to communicate with all the towns in the province, as well as with “the World,” about the recent announcement that Massachusetts’s governor and judges would hereafter be paid by–and hence accountable to–the Crown rather than the colonial legislature. More than half of the province’s 260 towns formed committees and replied to Boston’s communications.
The exchanges that followed helped build a sense of solidarity, as common grievances were discussed and common responses agreed upon. When the First Continental Congress was held in September 1774, it represented the logical evolution of the intercolonial communication that had begun with the Committees of Correspondence.
The importance of collective resistance isn't a new thing:
On the eve of the American Revolution, Samuel Adams, Dr. Joseph Warren, James Otis, and other Patriot leaders in Boston recognized the importance of collective resistance, the power of correspondence, and more importantly the vital significance of town meetings. They recognized that in order to gain popular support they needed to split the strength of the towns away from British rule. Their first step was to gain influence in town meetings throughout Massachusetts, which were primarily dominated by Loyalists, although at this time the number of Patriot supporters was growing rapidly. In Boston on Monday, November 2, 1772, they organized a town meeting at Faneuil Hall and garnered enough support to vote in a resolution to create a standing Committee of Correspondence. The purpose of the Boston Committee of Correspondence was to “Prepare a statement of the rights of the colonists, and of this province in particular, as men, as Christians, and as subjects; Prepare a declaration of the infringement of those rights; and Prepare a letter to be sent to all the towns of this province and to the world, giving the sense of this town.”
Tell me we aren't trying to do that online, trying to set up communication, even as Big Tech cracks down.
Tell me that "resistance" wasn't happening from the left the past four years with very little fear of federal law enforcement, media, and Big Tech censure. Instead, they were praised and encouraged to continue their riots, destruction, burning of police stations and attacks on federal buildings, and cancel culture. They were bailed out immediately by left-leaning groups and even Joe Biden's campaign if they did find themselves in jail.
Tell me we aren't back to a people with a government that doesn't listen or care, with most leaders more responsible to corporations, money, and power than to the people they serve. Our leaders act more like kings and lords and untouchable CEOs than ever before.
Tell me our leaders aren't mostly interested in serving themselves and their cadre and their future ambitions.
Tell me that every effort at regaining liberty doesn't lead to retaliation against and further degradation of the people who only want to be heard.
Tell me that speaking about freedoms and liberty being taken away are now, since January 6, going to put you on the federal law enforcement watch list, no fly lists, and whatever else. Simply speaking of the desire for freedom and being unshackled from government overlords who have far, far overstepped Constitutional boundaries while turning a blind eye to massive corruption is now supposedly a dangerous and seditious thing.
Maybe so. It was back then, wasn't it?
It must be a very uncomfortable thing for all of the politicians in D.C., from both parties, who are falling all over themselves to become fools in the heat of the moment to impeach, 25th, or censure President Donald Trump, to realize the history of how this nation got started.
Back then, you had a government far removed from the people they were governing (today they isolate themselves in the circles of the elites, some who seem disgusted by the presence of the plebes and their real needs), and politicians who were getting paid money that allowed them to operate autonomously from people (today it's corporate donation and bribes). Taxes levied without say, and increasingly onerous rules and retaliation when they spoke up about the lack of justice. The people being ruled became fed up, and began formulating and communicating plans of action.
That, today, is being called insurrection and sedition and un-American. But it's completely American. It's how we got our start. It's why the first amendment is first, and the second one says what it says right after it.
The founding fathers didn't have Big Tech controlling their paper and pens, however. So we now realize what beasts of evil our tech overlords are, having taken a hit but quickly learning how to skirt their control and notice.
We can form committees of correspondence today, and we already have been.
The problem with today is, perhaps, that the medium we use allows 4968 comments full of random insults, swears, arguments, moronic GIFS, accusations, trolls, and more. The chiming in of every opinion and selfish complaint dilutes the pure information and action.
Go back to mailing things.
Form your communities. If it's online, be sure your domain, host, and peripherals are liberty-loving companies or in your control. Find a place to meet that isn't susceptible to cancel culture or shutdown. Be creative. Study what the committees of correspondence did and why it was successful. It included information as well as townhall meetings. Reduce the amount of public comment on everything, as it leads to fights, squabbles, demands to know why someone was removed from a group*, and an excuse to take you down if some idiot advocates violence.
I've already subscribed to two paper newspapers for many reasons, including the desire to not see all the comments every reader had. I am taking my postal newsletter mailing list more seriously this year. (Sign up for that newsletter here.)
I encourage each of you to get at least the email address of everyone on your Facebook friends list that you contact regularly, and even start getting the mailing addresses. Order some stamps online. Start corresponding.
*As a group moderator for several groups who would often get angry messages when someone was removed: You were removed from a group because you simply wanted to argue and berate people. When your level of discourse and contribution is elevated to something legitimately contributing to action, new information, historical context, and measurable assistance instead of bitching and moaning, we'll talk.