Militias are Local and Independent
Organizing Strategy.

Often heard are arguments about whether militias are state or national, but the militia, like citizenship, is fundamentally local. We are first and foremost citizens of our local community. The word "citizen" has the same root as the word "city". Although people may also be concurrently citizens of larger political entities, such as states or the nation, and although those entities may be considered to be composed of their citizens, they are essentially composed of localities, and it is the local community that is the basis for the social contract, although it may be considered to include a certain amount of surrounding territory. Today we would usually identify the locality with the county.

Just as militias are essentially local, so also are they essentially independent of established authorities, since the militia may have to challenge or bypass those authorities if they abuse their authority or fail to perform their lawful duties.

The legal basis for assemblies of militias are two natural rights: the right to assemble and the right to keep and bear arms. Combined, they are the right to assemble bearing arms. The Framers considered it obvious that rights which could be exercised separately could be exercised in combination, and would have thought present attempts to outlaw independent assemblies of militia units as absurd. The term "well-regulated" used in the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution did not mean "regulated by some official". It meant "well-trained and disciplined". A militia can and should be self-regulated.

The U.S. Constitution, in Article I Section 8, does provide for States to organize and train their militias according to standards established by the U.S. Congress, and to appoint the officers, but it was not the intention of that clause to authorize states to forbid local organization and training of militia units, but to require that they be organized and trained. If the state fails to do so, people have not only the right but the duty to organize and train themselves locally, using their own arms. Just as they have the right and duty, failing action on the state level, to conduct elections, enforce the laws, establish courts, and so forth.

Of course, a militia unit that is not called up by any official, but by its own members, does not have the authority to compel participation through some kind of sanction, such as the imposition of a fine. Therefore it will be composed of volunteers, who may not represent a cross-section of the general population. In this situation, the militia members must make a special effort to avoid having the militia unit take on the attributes of a private association, such as by always calling up the militia using public notices, and allowing any responsible citizen to participate. It must also avoid any suggestion of partisan or sectarian bias, and limit itself to constitutional actions.

To do this, a militia unit should always refer to itself as the "[state/county] militia" and not adopt a name that would suggest some kind of private association, something that would expose its members to legal action against it as a legal "person" or as a "conspiracy". There can't be a conspiracy of the entire population of an area, and a court can't serve the entire population with process, even if not all of them are present at meetings.



Organizing Strategy:
Militia units of 50-200 members should be organized at the local level, by going house by house, covering entire neighborhoods, towns, and counties.
This will initially be easier to do in rural areas, where people are already more receptive to the patriotic message. In urban areas, it may work better to start by organizing "neighborhood associations", then educating the members gradually until it can be converted into a self-conscious militia unit.

Co-ordination among local units should be done using correspondence committees, which is the traditional method. These committees do not attempt to act as regional, state, or national organizations, but only to facilitate communications among local units, the sharing of literature, and the building of a consensus for action.
Some units might try to publish newsletters or other documents, but in most cases, it will be better to publish through established magazines and various alternative media, and distribute extra copies. Members may agree to subscribe to media that co-operate in publishing supporting materials.