Southern men and women should be appalled but not surprised at the U.S. central government’s long train of abuses against the citizens of the several states.
These affronts to our liberty are expected consequences of putting all our eggs in the basket of a leviathan government to secure so-called financial and social justice on our behalf. Sadly, the U.S. Constitution will not protect us; nor will the Congress.
A bit of history is in order. As far back as the century before last, in the midst of profound discontent, political philosopher and legal theorist Lysander Spooner, in his widely circulated No Treason essay in 1870 declared, “Whether the Constitution really be one thing, or another, this much is certain – that it has either authorized such a government as we have had, or has been powerless to prevent it”.
His comment is correct and the Anti-Federalists were right. A careful in depth examination of the U.S. Constitution and the debates that led up to its ratification in 1789 will indeed disclose that what we now have is what we were supposed to get all along. The storied convention in Philadelphia was held behind closed doors and continued for almost four months under strict secrecy. Fifty-five mostly lawyers and politicians initially attended, however those delegates were not charged by their respective States to scrap the Articles of Confederation, which required a unanimous vote of the States for any change or alteration and this gross disregard for State mandates would later prompt as many as 14 to quit and return to their homes. As an example, William Paterson, a delegate from New Jersey admonished the Convention saying that, “If the confederacy (under the Articles) is radically wrong, let us return to our states and obtain larger powers, not assume them ourselves”. Also speaking of the new proposal, Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts, in a harsh reprimand to the delegation, declared, “The system is full of vices! We ought not to destroy the existing Confederation without the unanimous consent of the parties to it”. He condemned, in his words, “the indecency and pernicious tendency of dissolving in so slight a manner, the solemn obligations of the articles of confederation.” Because of this, he later refused to sign the Constitution.
Patrick Henry, the revered Virginia patriot flat out refused an invitation to the convention, declaring that he “smelt a rat” and addressed the Virginia ratifying assembly in 1788 calling the Constitution “the most fatal plan that could possibly be conceived to enslave a free people.” Led by Henry, the Anti-Federalists worried, among other things that the position of president, then a novelty, might evolve into a monarchy. Looking at today’s political structure, even if the office was perhaps initially meant to be equal to Congress, the President has become a democratically elected, term-limited monarch.
These men were not alone. There are many others who objected to this radical change from dissolving one government and instituting another, more powerful regime.
The unfortunate result is that Federal reform is not possible.
There is also a distinct divide between what we now call today the Red States and Blue States. There are two different people on this continent with opposing ideas on moral, cultural, social, economic and political goals and never the two shall meet.
We Southerners are a separate and distinct people from those of the North and West and the aliens with which we are forced to share our land.
We are a people that still revere the tenets of our historic Christian faith and acknowledge its supremacy over man-made laws and opinions. We believe our strongest and most enduring earthly affections and allegiances are to those people and places closest to us – family, friends, neighbors, villages, towns, cities, counties, and States. Conversely, our weakest attachments are to far-off abstractions such as “the nation,” “the environment,” or the “global community.”
At one time, we were content to live—a separate people with our own language, culture, and ways—in union with them as long as they left us alone. All we ever asked was to be left alone. But they didn’t leave us alone, and they never will. They will never stop until they have erased every vestige of our Christianity, our South, and our Southern-ness from our land and our children, or until we separate ourselves from them. Self rule under our own laws is the only answer to the current political, economic, social and cultural nightmare that continues to emanate from Washington, D.C.
Pleading our case to this central government is fruitless, regardless of the venue. They have not listened and they will not listen!
The common law rights, which we were told the Bill of Rights aimed to protect, have been eroded or abrogated, and what rights remain live on in mortal peril. Our efforts at liberty, freedom and self-rule are stymied at every turn by government legislation, regulation and politically correct commandments.
And so, the government that our Founding Fathers gave us has been so utterly perverted that it is totally unaccountable to the States and their citizens and no mechanism exists for checking it. Presidents now rule, not govern, through Cabinet Departments, High Level political “Czars”, Implied Powers and Executive Orders. They have no regard for the sovereignty of the states and chaos reigns. Whichever way elections go in the short run, in the long run federal oppression will never end.
To protect ourselves and return liberty and freedom to our beloved Southland, we must chart a different course. Rather than using valuable time complaining about the corrupt central government and asking our citizens to depend on 535 (mostly) total strangers in Washington City for our fate, our resources should be expended in pressing our state lawmakers to interpose on our behalf; to pass and uphold legislation favourable to our religious freedom, our Southern culture and the sovereignty of our States. The States, in the words of James Madison, “are in duty bound, to interpose for arresting the progress of the evil” and must be persuaded to nullify these assaults on our liberty. This must be our chief principle of action.
Indeed, we must pray for God’s guidance and protection in our struggle. But we must also understand that separation is always preferable to slavery.