This was posted by a friend (and verified to be accurate)… Very powerful words from a Founding Father that have me thinking a lot this afternoon.
God forbid we should ever be 20 years without such a rebellion. The people cannot be all, and always, well informed. The past which is wrong will be discontented in proportion to the importance of the facts they misconceive; if they remain quiet under such misconceptions it is a lethargy, the forerunner of death to the public liberty.[...] What country can preserve it’s liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to facts, pardon & pacify them. What signify a few lives lost in a century or two? The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots & tyrants. It is its natural manure.
~ Thomas Jefferson, in a letter to William S. Smith (13 November 1787)