On today’s radio program I was asked how we would know when we were living under a tyrannical government. The Battle of Athens, a moment in American history unknown to most, but increasingly popular today, may provide an answer.
The Battle of Athens is the story of American GI’s, returning from World War II, confronting a corrupt county government in Athens, Tennessee. The story involves corruption in government, corrupt law enforcement, a citizenry that feels helpless to counter the corruption, and a group of GI’s returning from the battlefield who heed the call to “get their guns” and take back their government.
Most importantly, the year is 1946, a mere 67 years ago.
This isn’t the story of some movie producer.
This isn’t the story of some radical, right-wing, conservative gun-toting libertarian ready to secede from the United States.
This is the story of ordinary citizens, fed up with corruption, using their sense of right-and-wrong, accompanied by firearms, fighting a tyrannical government – and those who ran that government.
Are we at that point? That was the question, and I don’t know the answer.
What I do know is that we are approaching the tipping point, the proverbial fork in the road, where the Nation will willingly continue down the path of European socialism and Marxism; or, we will begin to resist, moving the country back to the right side of the political spectrum, more free markets, more individualism, more liberty and more freedom.
When we reach that juncture, and if the decision is to fight, politically and otherwise, to restore the Nation to basic principles of liberty and freedom espoused in the Declaration of Independence and Constitution, that movement will be rough, uncomfortable, perhaps even violent, and it not be made easily.
So, my answer to that caller is, I don’t know if we’re at that tipping point or not. On some days it feels we’ve gone beyond the point of no return, and other days it seems we can save the Republic.
But at least the Battle of Athens gives us some more recent American history that it is possible to confront corruption and deceit.
Thus, I promised to post articles on the Battle of Athens. The following links are some of the best sources for information on the story, and I urge you to read them in light of current attacks on the Bill of Rights.
Progress, far from consisting in change, depends on retentiveness. When change is absolute there remains no being to improve and no direction is set for possible improvement: and when experience is not retained, as among savages, infancy is perpetual. Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.
- George Santayana, The Life of Reason