Wednesday, December 15, 2010

A Salvation Message

One of the definitions for salvation is redemption, and redemption is precisely what is needed in the United States at this time. Anyone who has read all of the Constitution of the United States of America while doing so literally will understand that the current method of operation has strayed far off the path designed by the Framers and Founders. The procedures, policies and practices of the Federal Government bear a mere token resemblance to the original concept that was conceived at the founding. Throughout the decades of our Nation’s existence, the government and its power have grown to the point where they have become unmanageable and uncontrollable.

So if Big Brother has indeed become uncontrollable, how do we the people regain our control? How do we save or redeem our legacy of liberty? How do we reassert our power as a free people who hold the reins of power in our country? Prayer is a solid beginning, but if you’re a secularist, you may choose to study the Constitution for remedies that embedded there. On page 79 of his 1952 book, The Ordeal of Change, Eric Hoffer states “A society that in normal times cannot function adequately without unanimity is unfit for freedom.” (That title was prophetic, wasn’t it?). In other words Hoffer suggests the Rodney King lament (“Can we all get along?) undermines the cause of freedom. Attempts to secure universal results or broad based legislation to “level the playing field” are intended to force us all to get along. Much of our legislative agendas these days are directed towards the squeaking wheels. By greasing the lives of the petitioners government seeks to eliminate or minimize discord. As a result, government grows geometrically and individual freedom (and responsibility) shrinks accordingly. One cannot be all things to all people, and neither can government satisfy the whims of everyone. Discord, passion and inequitable outcomes are necessary for freedom to thrive. Complacent populations squander their opportunities, and liberty becomes a secondary preference.

Despite Judy Collins’ assertive claim, the answer isn’t “blowing in the wind.” The answer is found in the Constitution and reinforced by the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions of 1798 and 1799. Whereas individual outliers have little power when confronting an overly zealous federal government, their voices are magnified within the borders of their respective states. In Ohio, for example, the 132 state legislators are more approachable than the 535 members of the federal legislature. The drive from any point in Ohio to Columbus pales in comparison to the trek from Dayton to D.C. Accountability and responsiveness are more easily attained on a state level than federally. Clearly, an unengaged citizenry has allowed state governments in most cases to avoid constitutional scrutiny. When the people have become disgruntled, their wrath has often been directed at local dog wardens or focused on the incomprehensible federal apparatus. The states have often been spared the spotlight of review. State governments have coasted along under the radar despite some lurches into profligacy and power grabbing.

The salvation of our nation and our liberty is acquired in a fashion similar to spiritual salvation. According to evangelical Christian doctrine, the petitioner recognizes that he is a sinner, that she is estranged from God, and that he is incapable of navigating through life without Christ’s assistance. In a similar fashion the citizens must recognize that they have failed their responsibilities as watchdogs. The people should study and understand the Constitution so as to identify where government has corrupted the document, and then work together with like-minded patriots to grasp control of the state capitols throughout the land. State legislative candidates who are committed to the principle of nullification are the ONLY ones—regardless of party—who should be supported and elected. Principles must outweigh party labels if salvation or restoration is to succeed. The journey toward “we the people” must begin in the states….actually; the trip will begin in the living rooms of each respective state.

Once enough nullifying legislators are elected, they can begin to reject unconstitutional federal laws, mandates, rules and regulations. Those legislators can be held accountable by their respective constituencies who will discourage them from trading state overreaching for the federal version. This stratagem is constitutional, legal and much more quickly and effectively pursued than is a federal focus.

What if the state-based nullification strategy fails? Tomorrow we’ll discuss secession as a remedy. We’ll examine its viability and practicality.

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