From the January 2010 Idaho Observer:
Things Have Just Gotten Underway
“The several States composing the United States of America, are not united on the principle of unlimited submission to their General Government.” –Thomas Jefferson
by Michael Boldin
If we believe the only way to protect our rights is by begging federal politicians to do what we want, then the emails we received in December exclaiming “Last Chance to Stop National Healthcare!” are right. The vote went as expected, and so will the next.
And if we think marching on D.C. or calling our Representatives, or threatening to “throw the bums out” in 2010 or 2012 or 20-whatever, is going to further the cause of the Constitution and liberty – we might as well get our shackles on now. The last chance has come and gone.
But the Senate’s health care vote is far from the end of things – and even should it go into effect (and I assume some version will), it’s still not the end of the road for our freedom.
The real way to resist DC is not by begging politicians and judges in Washington to allow us to exercise our rights…it’s to exercise our rights whether they give us “permission” to or not.
Nullification – state-level resistance to unconstitutional federal laws – is the way forward
When a state ‘nullifies’ a federal law, it proclaims that the law in question is void and inoperative, or ‘non-effective,’ within the boundaries of that state; or, in other words, not a law as far as that state is concerned.
It’s peaceful, effective, and has a long history in the American tradition. It’s been invoked in support of free speech, in opposition to war and fugitive slave laws, and more. Regarding nullification and health care, there’s already a growing movement right now. Led by Arizona, voters in a number of states may get a chance to approve State Constitutional Amendments in 2010 that would effectively ban national health care in their states. Sources at the Tenth Amendment Center indicate that we should expect to see 20-25 states consider such legislation in 2010.
20 States resisting DC can do what calling, marching, yelling, faxing, and emailing has almost never done. Stop the feds dead in their tracks.
For example, 13 states are already defying federal marijuana prohibition, and the federal government is having such a hard time dealing with it that the Obama administration recently announced that it would no longer prioritize enforcement in states that have medical marijuana laws.
And in the last two years or so, more than 20 states have been able to effectively prevent the Real ID Act of 2005 from being implemented. How did they do that? By passing laws and resolutions refusing to comply with it. And today, it’s effectively null and void without ever being repealed by Congress or challenged in court.
While the Obama administration would like to revive it under a different name, the reality is still there – with massive state-level resistance, the federal government can be pushed back inside its constitutional box. Issue by issue, law by law, the best way to change the federal government is by resisting it on the state level. That’s nullification at work.
Over the years, wise men and women warned us that the Constitution would never enforce itself. The time is long overdue for people to start recognizing this fact, and bring that enforcement closer to home. If you want to make real change; if you want to really do something for liberty and for the Constitution…focus on local activism and your state governments. Start by finding out when your local County Republican or Democrat Central Committee meets and learn about becoming a precinct committeeman. Many positions are vacant, and this is where state resolutions are born.
Michael Boldin is the founder of the Tenth Amendment Center. Read more on the history of nullification at:
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