Rep. Don Young Signed Militia Leader's Revolutionary Declaration
video posted online in June 2009 shows Alaska Congressman Don Young
signing a revolutionary "Letter of Declaration" written by Alaska
militia leader Schaeffer Cox, who was arrested yesterday along with four
compatriots for allegedly plotting to kidnap and murder Alaska State
Troopers and a Fairbanks judge.
"Let it be known that should our government seek to further tax, restrict or register firearms ... thus impairing our ability to exercise the God-given right to self-defense that precedes all human legislation and is superior to it, that the duty of us good and faithful people will not be to obey them but to alter or abolish them," reads the declaration that Rep. Young signed.
Most of the 10-minute video consists of Cox discussing Second Amendment rights and sovereign citizen ideology in what appears to be his office, with a shotgun and assault rifle leaning against the wall.
the video, Cox details the origins of the Second Amendment Task Force, a
"pro-gun rights" group, founded by Cox in the spring of 2009, that
advocates a militant response to the passage of any new federal gun
Cox describes how he wrote his "Letter of Declaration" the night before the initial meeting of the Second Amendment Task Force at a Denny's restaurant in Fairbanks. In the video, Cox claims that 150 people attended the meeting, saying, "It was standing room only."
"Everybody there signed this letter," he adds.
As Cox begins to recite his declaration, the video cuts to footage of Rep. Young signing the very same letter (it is unclear whether this occurs at the same meeting).
The video shows Cox standing next to Rep. Young, addressing a crowd. "We have no obligation to submit to a government that refuses to submit to their governing document," Cox says.
A man in the crowd asks Rep. Young, "If any government should decide that we have to register certain of our arms or turn them in, what would your recommendation be?"
Rep. Young responds, "Don't do it...I sincerely mean that. Don't turn them in."
Cox's declaration reads in full:
Let it be known that we, the people of Alaska, stand in recognition of the true principle that whenever a government abandons the purpose for which we have created it and even becomes hostile towards that which it was once a defender of, it is no longer a fit steward of the political power that is inherent in the people and lent to this government with strict conditions. These conditions are clearly defined in the United States Constitution and understood by the common man.
Furthermore, to the extent that our government violates these conditions, they nullify their own authority, at which point it is our right and duty, not as subjects but as sovereign Americans, to entrust this power to new stewards who will not depart from the laws we have given them.
This being the case, let it be known that should our government seek to further tax, restrict or register firearms or otherwise impose on the right that shall not be infringed, thus impairing our ability to exercise the God-given right to self-defense which precedes all human legislation and is superior to it, that the duty of us good and faithful people will not be to obey them but to alter or abolish them and institute new government laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form as to us shall seem most likely to effect our safety and happiness.
Rep. Young did not immediately respond to a request for comment. His communications director said she was reviewing the video.
Rep. Young's communications director, Meredith Kenny, said the video shows Rep. Young signing the letter at an "open-carry day" in Fairbanks in the spring of 2009. At the open carry day, gun rights activists appeared in public openly wearing handgun in holsters.
"Rep. Young attended not because of anything having to do with Cox -- nor is he in any way affiliated with Cox -- but because he has always been a vocal and staunch defender of the Second Amendment," Kenny said. "Congressman Young stands strong with gun owners of America, and will always defend the 2nd Amendment rights of Americans."