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An agreement of the people

May 19, 2012

Burford on Levellers Day

We had a great time at Levellers Day today with the Woodcraft Folk, in Burford. There was tooting, and marching, and singing, and games, and a marquee with tea in it. And absolutely no rain.

We declare:

That the power of [all] Representatives of this Nation, is inferior only to theirs who choose them, and doth extend…  to whatsoever is not expressly or impliedly reserved by the represented to themselves: Which are as followeth.

1. That matters of religion and the ways of God’s worship are not at all entrusted by us to any human power…

2. That the matter of impresting and constraining any of us to serve in the wars is against our freedom; and therefore we do not allow it in our Representatives…

4. That in all laws made or to be made every person may be bound alike, and that no tenure, estate, charter, degree, birth, or place do confer any exemption from the ordinary course of legal proceedings whereunto others are subjected.

5. That as the laws ought to be equal, so they must be good, and not evidently destructive to the safety and well-being of the people.

These things we declare to be our native rights, and therefore are agreed and resolved to maintain them with our utmost possibilities against all opposition whatsoever; being compelled thereunto not only by the examples of our ancestors, whose blood was often spent in vain for the recovery of their freedoms.

On 17 May 1649, three men were shot for this, in the churchyard at Burford. Today, we gathered to remember the struggle for democracy and freedom, to celebrate its successes to date, and to resolve that we will continue to act as the represented, and not as subjects – compelled thereunto by the example of our ancestors, whose blood was often spent in vain for the recovery of their freedoms.

We also made really brilliant muffins:

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