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Monday, July 4, 2011

The Reason For The Season

Benjamin Harrison to Elbridge Gerry on the signing of the Declaration of Independence:

"I shall have a great advantage over you when we are all hung [sic] for what we are doing. From the size and weight of my body I shall die in a few minutes, but from the lightness of your body you will dance in the air for an hour or two before you are dead."*

 Enjoy the booms and the pretty flashes in the sky.

 I've seen this quote turned around so that Gerry was saying how much he envied Harrison for his (Harrison's) bulk. Either way it's probably apocryphal, but I don't care. It illustrates perfectly the situation the signers were in: they simultaneously committed treason and confessed to it with one stroke of a pen.