What is States' Rights? Part 4
by Mike Crane Morganton, Georgia
"Our Rights are like a cookie, no matter how big the cookie and how small the bites, eventually you run out of cookie"
In Part 1 of
this series a concept was presented that runs a bit contrary to current public
conception – that the term States' Rights can be used more for partisan
benefit than a true effort to protect the God-Given Rights of the people. Part
2 demonstrated that as early as 1801 incursions attacking American Liberty had
already started and have continued to this day. Part 3 gave details on an
obvious expansion of central government powers (authority) by legislative
Based on the definition (The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia® Copyright © 2007) of federated government:
" … The distribution of powers between the federal and state governments is usually accomplished by means of a written constitution, for a federation does not exist if authority can be allocated by ordinary legislation. …"
It should be obvious
that despite all of the rhetoric we do not have a federated form
of government at this point in time. The example in Part 3 was from the 1940's
and in the intervening years the expansion of central government powers has
So the current cries
for States' Rights, nullification and emphasis on using the 10th Amendment, has two major problems:
1) It hasn't worked for
over 200 years, the 10th Amendment is not new – it was ratified in
2) In many cases it is
just political rhetoric and when elected these politicians simply trample your
God-Given Rights in a different manner, but trample them just the same!
Perhaps it is time to
take a look at some of the reasons we have lost a federated form of government
whose primary purpose is to protect your God-Given Rights!
If you do not
understand what the cause of a problem is, it is unlikely that you will be able
to fix it. Continuing what has failed for 200 years also is unlikely to fix the
The remaining parts of
this series will focus on specific causes, except for the last two; a conclusion
and a summary. Many will not agree, few will dispute the facts.
Cause # 1: Americans
are not united in wanting a federated government
Dating back to the
colonial period, not all Americans have desired a federated form of government
with true checks and balances and a primary purpose of guaranteeing your
God-Given Rights. American Liberty has to accommodate multiple views if we truly
believe in government by the consent of the governed.
As the Colonies
approached the possibility of War with the English Crown a sizeable number, if not a majority preferred compromising with the English
Crown. At the first Continental Congress in 1774 the first plan of action was to
request that the English Parliament establish a subordinate Colonial Parliament
that could legislate on matters delegated by the English Parliament, subject to
This plan was defeated
by one vote, with the colonies each having one vote. So in 1774 there was far
less unity in the pursuit of Independence than many realize. Patrick Henry of
Virginia was instrumental in his arguments against compromise and taking bolder
steps which led to our War of Independence.
forming the committee to write the Declaration of Independence, the Continental
Congress began the process of forming a government to replace the English
government. Some wanted to form a Monarchy, some wanted a federated form of
government and others wanted a national government (such as Alexander Hamilton
pictured above). On November 15, 1777, the Second Continental Congress submitted
the Articles of Confederation to the Colonies for ratification.
The Articles were not
ratified until March 1, 1781. The debate and acceptance of the Articles of
Confederation was quite contentious, but resulted in a confederation of
independent and sovereign States, which was a federated form of government. But
it was far from a unanimous decision.
Throughout the history
of our country there have been few issues that have come close to having the
support of a super majority (2/3) and most major issues have been decided with
much less support than a super majority.
Today our country
remains deeply divided, perhaps more so than for many decades.
More on this subject
later and why this one simple fact makes most potential solutions impossible.
Cause # 2: Misconceptions about original Constitution of 1787 (prior to Bill of Rights)
Based upon my
experience, most proponents of a federated form of government believe that such
was the intent of the Framers of the Constitution of 1787. The words "Founding
Fathers" sometimes is used to reference the 55 Delegates to the Constitutional
Convention of 1787, even though only eight were signers of The Declaration of
I too – for most of my
adult life - had such beliefs …
Much to my dismay and
surprise I found that I had been wrong all of those years and those who
currently have such a belief are wrong also.
There were two plans in
front of the delegates. One was a federated form of government plan based upon
proposing amendments to the Articles of Confederation to correct the mutually
agreed problems. The other plan was for a completely new form of government – a
plan for a "national" government.
On June 19, 1787, the delegates were completing the debate about which "plan" would be used as the model and working document for their report.
One plan was a
federated form of government with shared sovereignty with the States; the other
plan was for a national government.
The vote on June 19,
1787, was 7-3-1 in favor of the national government plan!!!
On June 19, the
delegates to the Constitutional Convention of 1787 voted to take the road toward
a central government that would be supreme over the States and set the
foundation for what now exists in our land.
Many - if not most -
will disagree with Cause # 2 listed above and the previous sentence.
But if you do not
understand the Constitutional Convention of 1787, you have little or no chance
of ever working to implement a solution to the problems that we face today. Part
5 of this article series will continue with detailed information about the
Constitutional Convention of 1787 that your countrymen did not know during the
ratification process of 1787-88. The Notes on The Constitutional Convention were held in secret, sealed and unpublished until well after the ratification
process had concluded …
Continue to Part 5…
States' Rights - Part 1
What is States' Rights - Part 2
What is States' Rights - Part 3
What is States' Rights - Part 4
What is States' Rights - Part 5
What is States' Rights - Part 6
What is States' Rights - Part 7
What is States' Rights - Part 8
Mike Crane is a member of the League of the South Board of Directors and LS
Communications Coordinator. Mike has a long track record as a hard worker
within the Southern Heritage and Independence movements including being
first chairman of the Florida League of the South, serving on the board of
the Georgia League of the South, and an enthusiastic member of the Georgia
Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans. Additionally, Crane is a
Georgia Delegate to the Southern National Congress. Mike has been
politically active since 1965. Within that time, he has run for the Georgia
Senate twice and the Fannin County, Georgia Commission Chairmanship. Mike is
also one of the principle founders of the Southern Party of Georgia.
Mike is a member of Morganton Baptist Church and active in local church and local interdenominational benevolence efforts.
Mike will be a speaker at the 2013 League of The South Conference:
Learn more about the League of The South:
What is The League of the South?
by Dr Michael Hill - LS President
New League of The South Website