By Rick Saunders
In a press conference held last week, Texas Gov. Rick Perry articulated a concern that has long simmered under the surface of the nation’s states, and asked a question being asked by concerned Americans from coast to coast: has the intrusive hand of the federal government now become so oppressive and hostile to the existence of the states and to the free and productive lives of its citizens that a new resurgence of popular support for the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution is needed?
His answer: you bet it has, and the time has come to draw a line in the sand and say “enough is enough.” And yes, Virginia, Perry is a Republican.
Gov. Perry has thrown his support behind a movement in the Texas Legislature to enact HCR 50, a concurrent resolution reaffirming the proper relationship between the federal government and the states under the Tenth Amendment. That amendment, eloquent in its simplicity, states that “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.” A return to its powerful purpose is long overdue.
Under it, the Founding Fathers, as well as the representatives of the individual states of the fledgling republic who demanded it as an integral part of the Bill of Rights, understood that the federal government existed at the sufferance of the states, and not vice versa. Although this bedrock principle has resided at the core of the Tenth Amendment since 1791, over the years and decades and under both Republican and Democrat administrations–the jury is still out on the current administration as to whether it is more socialistic than anything else–its meaning and significance have been blurred, diluted and, until very recently, simply ignored.
But, as held in New York v. United States, 505 U.S. 44 (1992), under the Constitution and the Tenth Amendment, the states are not and were never intended to be mere “federal outposts” created to implement federal policies at the dictate of federal “authorities.” Ruling for the Court, Justice Sandra Day O’Connor noted that the federal government and the Congress “… may not simply commandeer the legislative and regulatory processes of the states” to implement and enforce federal policies. And yet, that is precisely what has happened in far, far too many instances, ranging all the way from the storage of nuclear waste to enforcement of gun laws to, believe it or not, Indian gaming.
Governor Perry is right: enough is enough and more states should follow his lead. And what better time to say “enough is enough” than now, when the most leftist chief executive in the history of the country now seems intent on changing the nation from the republic it has been for the last 220 years into an aggregation of battling classes more resembling Huxley’s Brave New World and without the slightest concern for the rights of the states under the Tenth Amendment.
Ah, but wait — there’s more. As The Chosen One and his cadre of apparatchiks continue to steer the ship of state into waters even more perilous than those off the coast of Somalia, the most recent preview of what lies ahead for people like Perry comes in the form of a just-declassified and released report from the Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”). If anything is more in danger of being hijacked than a cargo ship in the Gulf of Aden these days, it is the United States Constitution in the District of Columbia.
The hypocrisy of the current administration and, in particular, the DHS regime under Secretary Janet Napolitano, starts on the first page of the “assessment,” entitled “Rightwing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment.”
The DHS, now headed up by former Arizona Gov. Janet “What Budget Calamity?” Napolitano, has produced a document which reads like a draft criminal indictment of all things conservative, libertarian or even vaguely Republican. And perish the thought that someone would look to the Tenth or (shudder) the Second Amendment to try to learn of one’s rights under the Constitution.
Underscoring the abject hypocrisy of the DHS “assessment” and the mentality of its authors, whoever they may be, the report throughout refers to the targets of the report as “domestic rightwing terrorists,” “rightwing extremists,” “small terrorist cells” and “rightwing extremist radicalization.”
This from the same woman who, less than 30 days ago, stated that the terms “terrorist” and “terrorism” were being given the administration’s Orwellian Newspeak scrub and that, henceforth, the Obama administration would refuse to characterize Islamist murderers of civilians as “terrorists” and that “terrorism” itself would now be known only by its politically correct alias, “man-caused disasters.” Napolitano has apparently become a big fan of Napoleon the pig’s axiom in Animal Farm that “all animals are equal, but some are more equal than others” only, in her view, Islamist acts of decapitation are “man-caused disasters” while the only persons now capable of “terrorism” are “domestic rightwing terrorists.”
Disgusting, but oh, so typical.
What emerges is an ugly image of the United States Department of Homeland Security and its commandant calling the Islamist decapitation of a conscious, screaming Daniel Pearl a “man-caused disaster” while the legitimate concerns of non-Obots that their Constitution is being fed through a turbocharged industrial shredder constitute the rumblings of “domestic rightwing terrorists.”
Want some choice quotes from the report? How about the perceptions of “many rightwing extremist groups” that gun control legislation might eviscerate their Second Amendment rights and cause weapon and ammunition stockpiling and that “[s]uch activity, combined with a heightened level of extremist paranoia, has the potential to facilitate criminal activity and violence.”
Point one, “paranoia” is an unjustified fear. Remember, the first thing that dictatorships do when solidifying power is the disarming of the citizenry. Point two, since when did a citizen’s concern over rights protected by the U.S. Constitution become an acceptable basis for the slander that this will “facilitate criminal activity and violence?” The obvious, ominous answer seems to be: January 20, 2009.
The “assessment” also contends that “domestic rightwing terrorists” perceive the threat of the rise of other nations as being inimical to the interests of the United States (huh?) and that–get this–”[r]ightwing extremist views bemoan the decline of U.S. stature and have recently focused on themes such as the loss of U.S manufacturing capability to China and India….”
Say what? Is this not the identical propaganda line invoked by The Chosen One on the campaign trail when he was castigating all things Republican, dissing all things Bush and condemning all things corporate America in order to bamboozle the electorate into believing that he was better qualified–not to be confused, Virginia, with “eligible,” a completely different constitutional issue–to be elected president?
So, on that note, does this DHS report thus actually suggest that Obama himself may be a stealth rightwing extremist? Hmm. Maybe somebody should pose the question to his TelePrompTer. Regardless, Texas Gov. Perry, on the other hand, might need to start looking over his shoulder — his left shoulder, that is, as that’s their favorite side for attack.
So we are left with the question: What, exactly, are these people ingesting at night? I thought they harvested and hoarded away, like so much ammunition from members of that extremist group, the National Rifle Association, all the funny mushrooms from out behind the Rose Garden when Clinton loaded up the last U-Haul in 2000. Apparently not.
Rick Saunders is a freelance writer who splits his time between endeavors in southern California and the American southwest. He began writing for America’s Right in December 2008.