Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Sarah Palin and "Takin' Away Our Arms"

Leave it to Sarah Palin to turn Paul Revere's ride into a statement about "gun-grabbing."  In a wonder of historical revisionism, she stated about Paul Revere, in one of her famous off-the-cuff blunders,
"He who warned the British that they weren't gonna be takin' away our arms by ringing those bells, and makin' sure as he's riding his horse through town to send those warning shots and bells that we were going to be sure and we were going to be free, and we were going to be armed."  
(See the video of her statement HERE). (Another SOURCE).

Later, in trying to defend her earlier comment, she explained,
"Part of his ride was to warn the British that were already there. That, hey, you're not going to succeed. You're not going to take American arms. You are not going to beat our own well-armed persons, individual, private militia that we have."
Yes, according to Palin, Paul Revere made his ride not to warn his comrades about the advancing British, but to tell the British they couldn't take away our arms.  And, heck, why not throw in a random reference to a "private militia" (Not that private militias were recognized by the nation, the British, or Paul Revere.  "Militias" as they were defined at the time were state-organized armies).  Ms. Palin, please unload your half-cocked mind and stop seeing the world as if through rifle sights.

HERE is a description of the true events of that night and Revere's real, more patriotic motivations.

I can't claim to be surprised by Palin's revisionism, nor the attempts of her fans to re-write Wikipedia's entry on Paul Revere to match her new history.  It's just another predictable pro-gun statement by a public figure who is known for such extremist views.  And it makes for yet another semi-entertaining media circus for her to wallow in.

I wonder, if left to her devices, how would Palin further revise history?  Hmm....  HERE is one interpretation:


  1. This is a great post. Palin and other candidates are compelled to mention guns and arms as part of a code for the constituents. If she can't even get this right, how can she pretend to run for President? If she ran, this would be the easiest question she would have to answer from the press. This is why she can't be taken seriously.

  2. A good article on this:

  3. Japete: “Palin and other candidates are compelled to mention guns and arms as part of a code for the constituents.”

    And why do you think that is? We keep hearing from you that most people want tougher gun laws and there is just a small fringe of people fighting for gun-rights. Yet she feels compelled to always work gun rights into whatever embarrassing, historically inaccurate rambling she happens to be on. It is blatant pandering, but she is doing it for a reason.

  4. Did you really read the articles you post about? They say that the British were marching to either arrest Hancock and Adams, or (as most history books say) seize arms or powder (a critical component of arms).

    I do not think of Sarah Palin as an expert on this subject, and if she got something right it was probably by accident. But Revere's ride was about arms (at least in part) -- as your own linked articles say.

    The colonists had put up with much from their British rulers, but an attempt to confiscate arms went too far -- and meant war.

  5. Is it mean to point out that Mrs. Palin was more correct than not?

  6. Let's look at what the National Park Service says on the matter:

    What was the reason for the British expedition to Concord?
    On the evening of April 18, 1775, General Thomas Gage sent approximately 700 British soldiers out to Concord (about 18 miles distant) to seize and destroy military stores and equipment known to be stockpiled in the town. His orders to Lt. Col. Smith, the British officer who was to lead the expedition, were as follows:

    Having received intelligence, that a quantity of Ammunition, Provision, Artillery, Tents and small arms, have been collected at Concord, for the Avowed Purpose of raising and supporting a Rebellion against His Majesty, you will march with the Corps of Grenadiers and Light Infantry, put under your command, with the utmost expedition and secrecy to Concord, where you will seize and destroy all Artillery, Ammunition, Provision, Tents, Small Arms, and all military stores whatever. But you will take care that the Soldiers do not plunder the inhabitants, or hurt private property.

    Under great pressure from his superiors in England to bring Massachusetts back under control of the "lawful government," General Gage sent the troops to Concord in the hopes that by doing so, he could convince the colonists to back down, and thus avoid an armed rebellion.

    General Gage also believed that seizing stockpiles of weapons was not only a militiary necessity, but also his prerogative as governor of the colony. The colonists actively disagreed.

  7. Whether she was right or wrong, or whether she knew what she was saying is not so interesting as the point Baldr made. She worked the "taking their guns away" angle into the comments.

    This is a totally anachronistic concept. The possibility of the 21st century United States experiencing total gun bans and confiscations is silly. Only fantasy-prone people who suffer from grandiose vicitmism could even conceive of such nonsense.