How to start your own Light Foot Unit Instructions.
I feel that the first and biggest mistake most militias make is to be secretive about their existence. I know that people, myself included, are afraid of what the police powers (state and federal) have done to innocent
patriotic Americans. But forming a secret, private militia is the worst thing we could try to do.
First, the police and the public would view you, not as their friends and neighbors, their allies whom they could call on in an emergency, but as a threat. What people don't know and understand, they fear.
Second, the police (state, fed or both!) will be compelled to investigate you to make sure you aren't a threat. And as was seen in the 1990's, when paid informants couldn't find any evidence of wrongdoing, they made some up. They needed to justify their long and expensive investigation. It's sad but true.
No, that is not the right path. I felt we should do the opposite. There should be a liaison officer with the local county sheriff's departments. We should invite them to send a representative to meetings or training sessions. The unit's XO (executive officer) should send out a press release to let their friends and neighbors
know what we stand for, what we are doing and why. No one should fear the militia. The county sheriff should know that we are HIS friends and neighbors as well, and that if there were an emergency he could call upon us for help.
After coming to these conclusions, and after much prayer, I knew that what was needed was a real militia. Not a “group” that you join.
According to the U.S. Constitution, Federal Law, the Idaho State Constitution and Idaho State Code (please check your State's law), all male citizens ages 18-45 years are members of the militia. According to Anglo-Saxon Common Law, and the laws and customs of the American Colonies before our separation from the
British Empire, all males (and even females during an actual emergency) between the ages of 16 and 60 were considered members of the militia. So the militia, like your God-given rights, existed before the United States government was formed. And as such, you are already a member of the militia, by statute and by God-given right.
Most state constitutions allow their governor to call up the state's militia (the people, armed). Idaho's constitution mandates that the legislature “shall provide by law for the enrollment, equipment and discipline of the militia, to conform as nearly as practicable to the regulations for the government of the armies of the United States, and pass such laws to promote volunteer organizations as may afford them effectual encouragement.” But they neglect their duties. Our state constitution also mandates a public school system. They do that. But what if they didn't? Would you not teach your children yourselves? Or join with your neighbors and hire someone to teach your children in the absence of an organized school system? I say yes. I also say that that's the way we should view the militia. If the state governments will not do what's right and prepare their citizens so that they can be ready for an emergency situation, then it's up to the people to do it themselves, until such time as the legislature again resumes it's rightful duties.
The founding meeting of the “Idaho Light Foot” was held in the upstairs conference room at a local sports bar. The people who attended were mostly ex-military or ex-police officers. That fact might surprise you. But the truth is, if you found a group comprised of patriotic citizens having the common goal of helping out your community in a emergency, you end up attracting the same kind of people who've already volunteered to serve their neighbors and nation in the past. These people are a rare breed today and will not show up at meetings of secret, “under the radar” militia-type groups.
As I stated more than once at the first meeting, "not only are we not doing anything illegal, we aren't doing anything wrong". We discussed our concerns about what was happening in our country and what we could do about it. I put forward my ideas for forming a militia unit, and with minor changes, everyone agreed on a few basic principals:
1) We are not a “group” that you join. If you are a citizen of Idaho, then you are a member of the militia according to our constitution and state law.
2) All may come no matter what race or religion, whether man or woman. As long as you support the US and Idaho Constitutions, understand that our country was founded by Christians, that our laws are based on Biblical law and that it is for these reasons that all are guaranteed the right to live, work and worship as they see fit. We do not care if you're Christian, Muslim or atheist... as long as you stand up for the rights of others to live as they may, then you are a true protector of the Constitution. If you are a neo-nazi or anarchist, you are the enemy of our Constitutional Republic because you are seeking to replace it with a different form of government.
3) While women are welcome, they will serve in the Supply/Medical/Support units, not “combat” units, to preserve unit cohesion. They can serve as supply, transportation, medical, food service, communications or security personnel. But, all who join will be trained in firearms and basic combat skills. They will also be required to obtain a weapon and web gear.
4) We agreed to use the National Militia Standards (www.awrm.org) as our basic framework, which was quickly modified and customized with the result being the “Idaho Light Foot Militia Standards”.
5) All officers and non-comms shall be voted on by the men below them. This isn't regular army. We cannot throw you in the stockade for failing to follow orders. You cannot force men to follow you, they must respect you and want you to be their leader.
6) We voted in agreement on the flag and patches we would use for identification of “friendly” units.
1) Find a place to hold your first meeting. A public place is best; people feel more comfortable in a coffee shop than in a stranger's basement. Many restaurants have meeting/conference rooms that can be reserved for free as long as you eat while you're there. Also, check out community centers and libraries (if they have separate meeting rooms). We've even held meetings at the local ARBY's restaurant, no kidding.
2) Then start customizing and printing out your own fliers. If you have a website already, add the address to the flier. If not, at least include your email, phone or other way to contact you for info about your first meeting.
3) If you're like me, you want to put on a professional looking presentation at your meetings. I purchased a “Green Mountain Boys” flag and an American flag at http://patriotic-flags.com . Then I went “big time” and purchased a recruiting banner that we could also use at gun shows and patriot rallies. I got mine at www. bannersonthecheap.com . Copies of the “Light Foot Standards” can be made at www.staples.com . If you specify which pages are color, they'll only charge extra for those, and then charge B&W for the rest of the manual. Costs about $15 each; bound and covered. Or you can hand out copies on CD (much cheaper) and
they can print them themselves.
4) Your uniform patches, name tapes and dog tags can be found at the websites listed in the “Uniform” section of the Standards.
5) All that you need to know for your first presentation is in the Standards. Study them well. At your first meeting you WILL be nervous. This is natural. Just talk to your new found patriot friends and ask them about themselves; what their concerns are; what they want to get out of this.
6) Under no circumstances is talk of explosives, illegal machine guns or other illegal activity permitted at any time. Yes, books on explosives and such are legal and “for informational purposes only”, but discussing it (especially at a “militia meeting”) can and has been used as evidence of conspiracy. Don't fall into this trap. If someone comes to one of your meetings and starts talking about “making bombs”, he's either an idiot or a Fed. Either way, you don't want him around.
7) You should invite a representative of your county sheriff's office to attend your meetings. Be open with them. You're not doing anything wrong. If not at your founding meeting, then set up a meeting with the sheriff soon after so that you can introduce yourself (and other members who'd like to come with you to help represent the unit) and allay any fears he may have about a militia unit forming in his county.
8) Since we started in north Idaho we have networked with other groups and organizations. Tea Party, Constitution Party, Libertarian, John Birch Society, 9-12 groups and others are a great way to “network”. We have been welcomed by these and others with open arms (something I would not have believed 15 years ago). We started by going to their meetings (not in uniform, but not disguising who we were, either), handing out business cards (labeled “Idaho Light Foot” with contact info) and asking if we could set up an information table at their next event. Now they ask us to come.
9) Gun shows are a great way to get your message out to the public and to recruit new people. You might even consider doing one before your first meeting. Hand out fliers with the date and time of your “Founding Meeting”. Do it right, though. Have a good size banner (2'x6' or 2'x8') so that people know who you are. Half of our job is education. Gun shows and other patriotic rallies (County fairs are great too!) are the perfect opportunity to tell your neighbors what the militia is REALLY all about!
Once you've had your first meeting or two, you need to start electing officers. This isn't a “power” thing. As in any organization you need leaders to help get things, well... organized. It's honestly more of a job description than a military rank. If you read through the “Unit Structure” section in the Standards on page 11, “Battalion
Command Staff”, you'll see what I mean. Our officers understand that they only hold their position until someone better comes along. Then we will gladly step down into the ranks. We want the best qualified people in the proper leadership roles. This is not about EGO! This is about protecting our Republic! Leave your pride at the door, please. In the beginning you'll more than likely have more officers than enlisted men. This is OK because you need to have a structure in place early on if you want to maintain momentum. Your CO and XO should set up a meeting with the county sheriff and the local paper. Your Training Officer should start planning a training schedule and find out what the skills are of the former armed forces personnel, firemen, police and EMT's, among others, that are joining up. The Training Officer shouldn't have to conduct all the training himself. He should employ the experience of other members and “pass the knowledge around” the unit. Do you have an EMT (emergency medical technician) in your group? Then have him do a field first aid training class! And so on...
You will probably have people coming to your meetings or emailing you for information, who are not in your area, simply because they don't have anything like what you're doing in their county. Give them a copy of this booklet and the “Standards”. Help them to form a unit in their county. Have your officers attend their first couple of meetings to help get them going. Soon enough you'll have a “sister” unit next door. Help organize one more and you've formed a Regiment! We in north Idaho are now the “1st Regiment of Light Foot”, consisting of the counties of Boundary (21st Battalion), Bonner (17th Bn) and Kootenai (55th Bn). We also have a “sister” units in Washington State! They came to our meetings and wanted to join us, but we told them “we're not a group, we're citizens of Idaho and therefore members of the Idaho militia”. So they formed the “Washington Light Foot” militia and have been assisting other counties in their state with organizing “Light Foot” units.
We've found that a schedule of once a month meetings and twice a month training days works out pretty good. If you can do more that's great. But, many people have other commitments (work, family, etc) and three days a month is enough to ask of them. Your training schedule should consist of a classroom training (in say, “Map Reading/Land Navigation”) followed on the next scheduled training day with a field training (go out and use your map/compass) to put those newly learned skills into practical use while still fresh in the mind. Use the “Basic Training Plan” on page 17 of the “Standards” for your guideline concerning the proper training curriculum. It outlines the goals for individual preparedness.
For training materials we've adopted two well made manuals. The first is the US Army Field Manual FM 21-75 “Combat Skills of the Soldier”. The second is “Light Infantry Tactics for Small Teams” by Christopher E.Larson. Both of these books can be found online at Ebay or Amazon.
This path you're embarking on is not an easy one. You will need help from above. The Creator guided and protected our Founding Fathers before, during and after our War for Independence. We cannot be so proud and self-centered as to believe we can help protect and defend that independence without His protection and guidance.
Pray... with all your heart and all your soul for strength and wisdom.
...then start TRAINING!
For more detailed information see Page 41 of the Light Foot Militia Standards!