Thursday, October 1, 2009

An Update on States Rights (i.e., The United States Constitution)

Those who have not read the United States Constitution and those who pretend it doesn't exist come down with the vapors at the thought of the word "states rights." The reason, of course, is that the textbooks used in our mandatory indoctrination factories (public schools) use the term only in the context of a last-ditch effort to protect slavery and later to justify segregation. They generally fail to include The Federalist Papers, the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions written by James Madison and Thomas Jefferson, and the U.S. Constitution itself in explaining the concept of "states rights."

Now that creeping socialism has morphed into sprinting Marxism under President Barry Vladimir Hussein Soetero Obama, Czarina Pelosi, and Court Jester Reid some states are starting to remember that they have every right to tell the Kremlin on the Potomac to pound sand. The New York Times reports on the growing 10th Amendment movement across America. It seems the trigger for many is the Democrats' desire to make it a criminal offense to not purchase health insurance. Funny, but the Constitution does not seem to provide such authority to Congress.

Congress' powers are clearly outlined in Article I of the Constitution. And what of those things not mentioned in the Constitution? See the 10th Amendment:

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

Got it? Members of Congress who introduce bills or vote for bills that fall outside the parameters of the Constitution are violating their oath of office. The government does not belong to them. The Constitution is still in effect and "We The People" have every right to demand that these arrogant tyrants remain within their lawful boundaries. During the town hall meetings in August, more than one Congressperson and many Statist pundits talked about legislators living in fear. My response? Good! We are citizens not subjects. When they seek to take away individual liberty and freedom from American citizens we should be loudly engaged. If they want to "turn down the temperature" they can start by recognizing their authority is limited by the Constitution. But, as long as they desire to rule over the people they cannot expect politeness and civility from their victims.

The 10th Amendment is the ultimate trump card for the states against an abusive and invasive federal leviathan. However, that powerful statement was unnecessary in the eyes of Founding Father James Madison, who wrote in Federalist No. 45:

"The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government are few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State governments are numerous and indefinite. The former will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation and foreign commerce. ... The powers reserved to the several States will extend to all the objects which in the ordinary course of affairs, concern the lives and liberties, and properties of the people, and the internal order, improvement and prosperity of the State."

No constitutional amendment has changed that principle. It has been attacked by successive waves of legislators who do not wish to abide by the constraints of limited government. But, there it remains. As long as liberty's flame flickers in the hearts of Americans, it is never too late to reclaim the birthright bequeathed to us by the Founders and protected by successive generations of brave soldiers.

Hopefully, a new awareness of the precarious state of American liberty will lead to a revitalized and committed Republican party that will wrest the federal government from the clutches of the Statists who currently hold the keys. In the meantime, it is our duty to support courageous state legislators and governors who are willing to fight for their legitimate powers. If you want to learn more about the 10th Amendment in action, check out the Tenth Amendment Center and their on-going fight for the rights of the states and of the people.

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