14 January 2013

I Can Beat You Up, So I'm Right

I certainly do not advocate secession. I would much prefer to see our country revert to the intent of the framers regarding federalism and, though united, allow the states more autonomy in governance, but that's another topic for another day. Yet, recent headlines on the Drudge Report should give Americans reason to pause:

Hannity Foresees Possibility of States Leaving the Union

Patriotic Group Building Armed Neighborhood Fortress

Wyoming Seeks To Nullify Any Federal Gun Laws

Kevin Levin recently made some comments at Civil War Memory on the secession petition to the White House. Kevin kinda gets a hoot out of all them thar red-state rednecks catchin' secesh fever and petitionin' the White House. It is funny, I have to admit. This administration bypasses Congress - does anyone really think they'd pay any attention to citizens' petitions? That is funny. 

However, when looking at the turmoil in recent decades - the Middle East, the Old Soviet Union, etc. - it's a bit naive and Pollyanna-like to think that the possibility of a break up of the United States doesn't at least exist. You'd have to be wearing blinders to believe that. I have children and grandchildren and the possibility, along with all that it could entail, concerns me.

But, the truth is, more often than not, it's the left that threatens and endorses secession. Facts are stubborn things. But regarding Kevin's point about the court case of Texas v. White; not everyone thinks it's quite as cut and dry as he does. An attorney recently reviewed that case and gave a clear explanation as to why that particular court decision is not, legally speaking, the final word on secession. Beyond the flawed legal reasoning (the case was about bonds, not secession), to suggest that an 1869 Supreme Court case is the final word on any matter is absurd on it's face. Frankly, it's laughable. (In reality, is there ever a final word on any legal issue anyway? No. The courts are constantly overturning themselves and setting new precedents.)

Here's just a few lines from this attorney's summation regarding the facts surrounding that 1869 court decision:

Texas v. White is often cited as a case which definitively and directly ruled on Texas' right to secede. That is not the case. Texas v. White was a case about government bonds.

In summary, Texas v. White, even if given the utmost respect, and considered binding precedent, does not stand for the proposition that no state may ever break its bonds with the Federal Government of the United States. At the same time, if it is considered the final word on the Federal Government's right to prohibit a state from seceding, then that right is far from established. 
Unless you're prefer fantasy over facts, I'd recommend reading the whole article. It's quite interesting. Kevin also posted some comments congratulating his political team for their response to all the secession talk and the related petition to the White House. He considers some political hack's inaccurate statements about the Civil War a "wonderful job."

. . . more than 600,000 Americans died in a long and bloody civil war that vindicated the principle that the Constitution establishes a permanent union between the States. [Emphasis mine.]
How anyone could get the idea that war ever "vindicates" any principle is beyond me. That's one of the most ignorant and/or misleading statements I've ever read. The victor in a war simply means they were better able to kill their enemy and destroy their assets than was their opponent - period. If two men disagree over some item in a contract and they decide to address the argument in the boxing ring, does who wins "vindicate" the position over which they were disagreeing? Of course not. War does not vindicate a principle. Principles are vindicated by truth, logic, fact, and, ultimately, God. Applying the White House's logic would mean that if a 250 pound man beats and robs a 125 pound man, then his "victory" vindicates the principle that he has the right to beat and rob. Once again, that's absurd on its face, as is the tortured reasoning and logic of political commentary posing as history. But it does make for affirmative head-nodding for the low-information crowd. 

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