Frequently Asked Questions
Committees of Safety
Q: Why didn't I learn about the Committees of Safety back in school?
A: The history of the Revolutionary War was not even put to paper until about the 1820s. Once the War was over, most people simply wanted to return home and get on with living their lives. As those who were actors in the events grew old, they realized that they must leave a record. Most of those records, written to educate the youth of the causes, etc., were written rather simply as a record of events, heroics, dates, and players. Those evolved into our current history textbooks, though there are some more detailed historical writings still available.
There can be little doubt, however, that in our more complex society, the government would prefer not to acknowledge the right of the people as the ultimate authority (sovereignty) that led to the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution (We the People), be kept from public view and understanding.
Q: What was the relationship between the many Committees of Safety and the Continental Congresses?
A: It appears that the first call for a Continental Congress was made by the Massachusetts Committee of Safety, though there was little response. Shortly thereafter, the New York Committee of Safety put out a similar request, and this one was responded to by organizing the First Continental Congress, in 1774. That first Congress was called to determine how to deal with the "Intolerable Acts."
The Second Continental Congress was called for by the Committees after warfare began at Lexington & Concord. That Congress appears to have provided for self-perpetuation, by calling for annual meetings, though the delegates were still selected by their respective Committees of Safety.
Q: When was the last time any Committee of Safety was operational?
A: During the Revolutionary War era, many committees existed until 1781. It appears that their need ceased to exist since each of the colonies had become states, by right, with adopted constitutions or revised charters, as well as with the ratification of the Articles of Confederation.
However, this was not the end of the Committees of Safety. Texas, in her opposition to the violations of the constitutional rights under the rule of Mexico by then President Santa Anna, formed Committees of Safety, in 1835, which became the civil authority under which the Texans fought, and finally formed their own country and government.
There was also a short-lived use of Committees of Safety in California, though the transition from Mexico to the United States was rather rapid, making nearly ineffectual the need for the transition of civil authority.
Q: How do I begin forming a local Committee of Safety?
A: Find a few others who are interested in forming a Committee of Safety, arrange a meeting, and then elect a chairman. Now, you have a Committee of Safety. At that point, you need to adopt some by-laws upon which to operate. See Model County Rules and the St. Joseph County Committee of Safety By-Laws. Then, expand your membership by aiding your neighbors with projects they would have trouble doing, talking with them. See Introduction to Committees of Safety
Q: Is there a central registry of these Committees of Safety?
A: There is no central registry, though perhaps our purpose would be served if all Committees of Safety would voluntarily list themselves on the directory provided at List of Committees
As the situation in this country becomes more severe, the need to know where Committees are will be instrumental in communication, coordinating, and acting.
If the towns, etc., within a county join, or create, a county Committee of Safety, this county committee will know who and where the more local committees are. Likewise, if the county committees form a state committee, then they will know what their lower elements are. However, this does not provide a means for people who are seeking a local Committee of Safety to find one, though voluntarily listing their committee will allow others to find, join, and participate, that much earlier.
Q: Am I required to recognize state citizenship before I can join the General Association for my local Committee of Safety?
A: When we look at the changes that have been detrimental to the intentions of the Framers of the Constitution, we can understand that "Titles of Nobility" were prohibited, both to the state and federal governments. Subsequently, an Amendment to the Constitution was ratified, and then disappeared, regarding those Titles. See Titles of Nobility.
Though a part of our constitutional history, the option of any Committee of Safety to recognize the intent of that Amendment, or not, is theirs to determine. The subscription forms that are included within the documentation are for recognition and obedience to that Amendment, or not. That choice, as well as any other decisions of the structure for a local Committee of Safety, are of concern to the founding of that committee.
Q: I identify with a specific political ideology. Would establishing a local Committee of Safety further my own political objectives?
A: There is nothing wrong with identifying with a political ideology, so long as the identifying is not a subordination to a political party or platform.
However, the ideology, or general concept based on an affiliation, is simply a foundation from which you participate in discussions in an effort to reach a consensus.
If you have political objectives, you may be motivated for the wrong reasons. If the motivation is to serve, it is the proper motivation. If the motivation is to impose, lead, control, or dictate, to others, then your motivation is not to the good of the whole, rather, it is to your self-interests.
Statesmanship, not politics, should be the motivating force. To distinguish between the two, we may look at it this way. The politician tells you what you want to hear, most likely, in pursuit of votes, however, keeping his true thoughts to himself. He seeks power and control.
The statesman, however, tells you what you need to hear, and realizes that he does not have all of the answers to problems, though he seeks, by working with others, to find the best solution.
Q: Don't we have to tell the police we are forming a Committee of Safety?
A: Why would you want to do that? If you feel comfortable doing so, there is no reason not to, however, you don't need permission from anyone to form a Committee of Safety. See Potential of the Committee of Safety in this Troubled Nation
Q: What operations should my Committee of Safety begin doing?
A: Individual members should talk with their friends and encourage participation. If you form a membership committee, then they should exert their efforts in devising means to encourage continued participation by existing members, and enlistment of new members. See Introduction to Committees of Safety. Sub-committees have to be established in order to provide for other functions. See Model County Rules and the St. Joseph County Committee of Safety By-Laws.
Q: Should Committees of Safety use encryption in their courier networks?
A: They should be prepared to use encryption, and do so, if the need arises. They should also be prepared for alternate (non-electronic) means of communications with nearby Committees, which could constitute a chain that could reach across the country, without any form that could be intercepted by electronic means.
Q: Should these Committees of Safety hold our public servants accountable?
A: The Committees of Safety, during the Revolutionary War, dealt with Tories, or public servants, who were "inimical to the cause of liberty", by various means. Some houses were destroyed, some individuals were "tarred and feathered", and some were ordered under "house arrest" and their "long guns" taken from them, although they were left with pistols for their own protection.
To hold them accountable, under the then existing governments, would not even have been considered, as it was the entire system of government that they were holding accountable by removing them from power. See Sons of Liberty, No. 14
Q: How susceptible would our local Committee of Safety be to infiltration by government police?
A: Quite susceptible. However, the consequence of infiltration can be demonstrated, in real life, at least to the testimony of an agent, is described in Let me tell you about a man named "Quigley". Since there is nothing illegal being conducted by the Committee, it is inconsequential, however, the acceptance of a secret police intrusion into our affairs is, and should be, of concern to everyone interested in returning to the intention of the Constitution. With that in mind, it is encouraged that any Committee established should make provision for evaluation of members, where questions as to their allegiance might arise. See Purpose and By-laws of the Arizona Committee of Safety, Model General Association Oath & Secrecy Oath
Q: How will our local Committee of Safety survive long-term whenever members of the general association move away or die?
A: If the Committee is dependent upon the abilities of one, or even just a few, members, for its ability to operate properly, then, is it really a Committee of Safety, or a tool of the one, or the few? Have we been so compromised by the conditioning of mainstream media and the government schools that that we accept the "compartmentalization" of our society, so that unless we are trained to do a task, we are incompetent to perform it?
The term for a chairman of a Committee should be for a year, at most, or even six months, so that others can learn and exercise their abilities in the organization and operation of the Committee. See A Thought on Leadership. If we wish to return to bottom of government, rather than the top down government that has been foisted on us, we need to exercise that form.
If the chairman of the Committee makes mistakes, through his entire term, he will still have made fewer mistakes than the Congress, during the same period. And, as well as others, will learn from those mistakes, though Congress seems to be unable to learn from their mistakes.
"But you must remember, my fellow-citizens, that eternal vigilance by the people is the price of liberty, and that you must pay the price if you wish to secure the blessing."
[Andrew Jackson, Farewell Address, March 4, 1837]
That vigilance is an obligation on all of us, for the sake of our posterity. Do you know that you cannot get along without the guidance of others, or, have you simply convinced yourself that you cannot?
Remember, always, that if you have a role of responsibility in a Committee of Safety, you also have the resource of the thoughts of all of the other members. It is truly a team, whose objective is to find the proper answer, suitable to the consensus of the majority.
If the existence of the Committee rests on the shoulders of a single person, then it is not really a Committee of Safety. A Committee of Safety is made of the whole, not of the parts.
Q: Will these local Committees of Safety "take control" after the economy collapses?
A: Government's purpose is not "to take control", rather, it is intended to maintain order. The pseudo economy that exists, today, is a creation of the government that is absent any lawful authority. The extent of their authority is contained in Article I, § 8, clause 5, "To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and Measures." It is further defined by implication in Article I,§ 10, clause 1, where it prohibits the States from making "any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts."
The fiat money "economy" that the government has unlawfully imposed on us is much like a Ponzi scheme, and will eventually fail. The Committees of Safety may provide local support for temporary currency, or credit, though the "economy" can only be restored when the existing economic system, currently in place, is rooted out. See An Economic Solution.
Q: Why must militia units subordinate themselves to a Committee of Safety?
A: Our heritage, from the Magna Carta on, provides that the military (militia) shall always be subordinate to the civil authority. However, there is no "must", quite simply, a militia can subordinate to the Governor of the state, as per statutes, or to the Committee of Safety, as they have, from time to time, through ours and English history. If they fail to subordinate to one or the other, they are not "militia", as described in the constitutions.
Q: What should our militia units be doing?
A: "Well regulated" is best defined as organized, equipped (accoutered), and trained in military arts. In the Revolutionary War era, a source that was recommended by most authorities was A Plan of Discipline Compiled for the USE of the Militia of the County of Norfolk. The requisite training was not playing in the woods, rather, it was care of equipment, shooting practice, close order drills (obedience to orders, working as a team, etc.), as was brought to Valley Forge by von Stueben.
Q: Isn't any Committee of Safety just a lobbying group?
A: On the contrary, it has nothing, at all, to do with attempting to "persuade" the government, promote a political candidate, or to encourage the passage or repeal of any laws. They are not an advocacy group. See Committees of Safety are Not Advocacy Group. Their purpose is, as explained in the Declaration of Independence, that the People "are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness [property]. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed." That, too, is the purpose of the Committees of Safety.
Q: Aren't Committees of Safety just a "sovereign citizen" phenomenon?
A: No, they are far from the so-called "sovereign citizen" concept. The concept of the Founders was that the people were sovereign, though to have a nation, some of that sovereignty had to be relinquished to the government. That which was relinquished can be readily identified when one reads his state constitution and the federal Constitution. For example, the establishment of the judiciary for matters of the state or federal government, including Grand and Petit Juries, was relinquished to the authority of the respective governments, as well as to the county and city level, in some state constitutions. See Sons of Liberty, No. 14
The Committees of Safety do, during an interim period, provide a collective sovereignty, though as in the Revolutionary War, some of that will be relinquished to the higher orders of government, such as the county Committee, the state Committee, and finally, the equivalent of the Continental Congress, though only to the extent specifically granted, or absolutely necessary, to the function of those higher elements.
Q: Who are the chairmen for these Committees of Safety?
A: The chairmanship of any Committee of Safety is not to be perceived as a position of power or authority. Though the chairman will usually have more influence than other members of a Committee, his role is to organize the meetings, assure that they are conducted with decorum and purpose, assist in assuring that objectives are accomplished, and otherwise, to exert every effort in assuring that the Committee performs its duties as efficiently as possible. His term should be for one year, with at least one year out of that position, so as to not provide a platform for perpetual power. See A Thought on Leadership.
Q: What is the difference between the Committee of Safety concept and a coup d'état?
A: A coup d'état is defined as "Sudden overthrow, often violent, of an existing government by a group of conspirators." Such a coup tends to leave a power void, or power in the hands of a few conspirators, thus establishing a top to bottom form of government (dictatorship, monarchy, etc.). The purpose of the Committee, when old government is cast off, is to establish a bottom to top government.
To demonstrate this concept, we can look at what we currently have in government, this not being in accord with the Constitution. Picture a triangle, with a point at the top. That is the position that usurpation of authority has placed the President, with lower elements of government occupying strata levels descending downward, leaving the people, who are the source of legitimate power, at the very bottom of the triangle.
What was intended by the Founders, which was primarily created by what might be deemed "American Aristocracy", was, once created, the demise of any form or sense of aristocracy. They relinquished the power that they had when the Constitution that they wrote was ratified. The form of government that was created had the triangle inverted, with its point down, though it was still the President at that point of the triangle. He is the only person truly employed by all of the citizens of the country. The power is at the flat top of the triangle, the People, from whence all legitimate power stems.
Q: Are Committees of Safety illegal?
A: The First Amendment to the Constitution prohibits Congress from making any laws "abridging the freedom of speech …or the right of the people peaceably to assemble". Most assuredly, the right to form a Committee of Safety is protected by these provisions. See Are Committees of Safety Illegal?
Q: Is a local Committee of Safety simply just an underground government?
A: Absolutely not. It is "open and notorious", as it is completely within the rights protected, specifically, by the Constitution (See previous question).
It might be described as a "parallel government" whose duty is to afford protection and provide other services where the existing government has failed to provide those ends -- the purpose of government. If circumstances change, as they did when British influence was being diminished, they expanded their roles so that the role of the purpose of civil government continued, ultimately assuming all of the powers of civil government.
Q: Should we incorporate our local Committee of Safety?
A: As a Committee of Safety that was established to provide a form of civil government that would provide protection of life, liberty, and property, if the existing government fails to so provide, then why would we even begin to think that we needed the existing government to bless our right (and possibly impose sanction, restrictions, obligation, or taxes) to "peaceably assemble"?
Corporations are created by the government, based upon an application submitted requesting the governmental approval of the corporation. The actions, or inactions, of that government has led us to where we see the need to provide the safeguards, via a Committee of Safety. If our obedience to the existing government is so strong as to cause us to seek their sanction and protection, we should rather simply go to our knees and submit to whatever they wish to do.