I came across this article the other day referencing an article by Walter E. Williams about Oklahoma. It is an interesting read. Apparently Oklahoma is about to rebel against the abuse of power that Congress, the Senate, the White House have been presuming for decades.
Thursday, July 17, 2008
One of the unappreciated casualties of the War of 1861, erroneously called a Civil War, was its contribution to the erosion of constitutional guarantees of state sovereignty. It settled the issue of secession, making it possible for the federal government to increasingly run roughshod over Ninth and 10th Amendment guarantees.A civil war, by the way, is a struggle where two or more parties try to take over the central government. Confederate President Jefferson Davis no more wanted to take over Washington, D.C., than George Washington wanted to take over London. Both wars are more properly described as wars of independence.
Oklahomans are trying to recover some of their lost state sovereignty by House Joint Resolution 1089, introduced by State Rep. Charles Key.
The resolution’s language, in part, reads: “Whereas, the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States reads as follows: ‘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.’; and Whereas, the Tenth Amendment defines the total scope of federal power as being that specifically granted by the Constitution of the United States and no more; and whereas, the scope of power defined by the Tenth Amendment means that the federal government was created by the states specifically to be an agent of the states; and Whereas, today, in 2008, the states are demonstrably treated as agents of the federal government. … Now, therefore, be it resolved by the House of Representatives and the Senate of the 2nd session of the 51st Oklahoma Legislature: that the State of Oklahoma hereby claims sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States over all powers not otherwise enumerated and granted to the federal government by the Constitution of the United States. That this serve as Notice and Demand to the federal government, as our agent, to cease and desist, effective immediately, mandates that are beyond the scope of these constitutionally delegated powers.”
The interesting thing is that I don’t see where in the Constitution it says that the States can turn over all their powers to the Federal Government. Perhaps they can, but I’m not seeing it.
The Tenth Amendment reads:
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.
Now you have to wonder when ALL the States decided to give the federal government full and complete control. Don’t you? I can’t seem to find any amendment that grants this much power to the federal government. Or maybe I’m just not understanding something? Considering this, you now have to wonder why a Federal law would take precedent over a State law.
According to Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution, the government can:
The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;
To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress;
To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the Acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States, and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent of the Legislature of the State in which the Same shall be, for the Erection of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, dock-Yards, and other needful Buildings;–And
To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof.
Given all this, you have to wonder where Congress and the President think they have the final say in our everyday lives, don’t you?
I’m slowly coming to understand more of these things. The way our founding fathers wrote, does make it confusing sometimes. But I did spot a couple more things in there that will make good food for another post down the road.
In the meantime, this is more food for thought. Is it time that we the people demand our respective states recall their sovereignty and hold said states accountable to the citizens the Constitution was designed to protect? I think so!