“When Governments fear the people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny.” (Beck 35). This quote is from one of the greatest men in the history of the United States of America, Thomas Jefferson, the father of the Declaration of Independence, and the third President of the United States. The validity of his statement is not only historical, but as pertinent today as it was when spoken anew. It is learned in schools across the nation, although the importance of the words depends on the teacher, school, and region of the country. During the revolutionary period, King George learned this same concept the hard way, “…an armed populace is a populace that will not be pushed around.” …show more content…
Ordinary citizens, colonists of the British Crown, took up arms against tyranny and irresponsible governing by the king. Today, militia is understood to be a ‘people’s army’. It is a group whose purpose is to fight for the rights and protection of the people instead of for a government. Regarding the term militia and its definition Beck states:
“The colonies, then the states, and now the federal government have long declared exactly which part of the population might be organized as ‘militia.’ Today, federal law defines ‘the militia of the United States’ to include all able-bodied males from 17 to 45 and all members of the National Guard up to age 64, but excluding those who have no intention of becoming citizens and active military personnel.” (40-41).
To translate this more simply, it has been established that every male citizen in our society between the ages of 17 and 45, those who desire to become citizens, and members of the National Guard, are considered militia in the United States. Active military personnel are not militia because they are already serving in the nation’s armed forces. Requiring those men to serve in both the standing army and the militia would not be a reasonable request, and could be considered a conflict of interest. The armed forces have their duty to the federal government. The militia has a duty to the people of the United States to protect our own borders and people.
In order to responsibly ensure that one’s