OPINION – There are many reasons to be grateful for living in Southern Utah. They include beautiful scenery, clean air, low crime, and strong, self-reliant communities. There’s one more thing to add to that list — local leaders that are willing to say “no” to an increasingly unlimited federal government.
This past Friday, the Iron County Commission passed a Constitutional Jurisdiction resolution clarifying that the county will not recognize federal laws or mandates that violate the U.S. Constitution. It’s a move that would be unthinkable for other counties and municipalities that have become dependent upon federal funding.
Naturally, this move is alarming to those who favor highly centralized government micromanaging down to the local level. It’s not that they are all power-hungry control freaks. Most simply lack an understanding of the proper relationship between the federal government and all other levels of government.
More often than not, their thinking has been shaped by the bastardized form of history taught in an education system that’s been progressively brought under the control of federal bureaucrats. These misconceptions are further reinforced by American mass media that serves to distract rather than inform.
Jim Quinn describes why this is so:
The news, as reported by the corporate legacy media, is nothing more than propaganda generated by the establishment to support their continued control over the financial and governmental levers. It is designed to distract, misinform and obscure the truth.
Only when we turn off the television and begin reading original sources can we begin to see where our grasp of proper government has gone astray.
By original sources, I mean the original documents that provided the foundational building blocks for the founding of America. These would include the Mayflower Compact, the Fundamental Orders of Connecticut, the Body of Liberties of Massachusetts Bay, the Virginia Declaration of Rights, the Declaration of Independence, and the U.S. Constitution.
During the period between 1620 and 1789, the 13 original colonies became the united States. That small “u” is not a typo. It is the correct spelling of a word that referred to thirteen states that possessed individual sovereignty.
This individual sovereignty was further demonstrated in the fact that each of the states wrote their own constitution. It can be witnessed in the fact that when King George signed the Treaty of Paris in 1783, ending the Revolutionary war, he referred to all 13 colonies as separate signatories rather than a single conglomerate.
After the states had gained their independence, they found certain areas of common interest that the Articles of Confederation did not effectively cover. In 1787, the states sent delegates to Philadelphia to correct those deficiencies and the delegates instead constructed a plan to create a federal government.
Keeping in mind that a creation cannot exceed its creator, the people of the various states called into existence a limited federal government. It was a voluntary union in which specific and enumerated powers were delegated to the federal government.
Those federal powers covered only the specified areas of common interest including foreign policy, national defense, and the establishment of post offices and roads. The Constitution represented a contract between the states and the federal government it called into existence. This is how our constitutional republic was created.
The states, meanwhile, retained their individual sovereignty and innumerable and unspecified powers including the right to secede.
Over the years, those who favored an all-powerful national government over a limited federal government relentlessly sought to find ways to avoid constitutional limitations.
Consolidationists like Alexander Hamilton urged the exploitation of the “necessary and proper” clause of the Constitution to invoke “implied powers” that would allow the federal government to reach beyond its limits. Lincoln, through his War of Involuntary Union, destroyed the federalist system and established a national government to which the states became subservient.
Under FDR, the Commerce Clause was exploited to allow the federal government to exercise control over areas of our lives to which no powers had be delegated. At each step along the way, black-robed members of the federal judiciary have created legal smokescreens as cover for the usurpers.
Even today, law schools teach a creative interpretation of the “supremacy clause” in which we’re not supposed to remember that the federal government can only exercise supremacy in regards to its enumerated powers listed in the Constitution. If a federal law or mandate is not consistent with its constitutional limits, it should not be binding on the people for it lacks proper jurisdiction.
There is no blank check for the federal government to hand down any old laws or mandates it wishes.
Without proper separation of powers between the federal government, the states, and the people, there is no effective process to check government authority to ensure it is used to protect individual liberty.
Iron County may be just one small county in a lightly populated Western state, but it is on the right path to restoring the proper balance of power. It begins by just saying: “No.”
- County Commission fights federal overreach, mismanagement
- Public hearing: Vehicle, aircraft use in management of wild horse, burro populations
- BLM releases wild horse gather environmental assessment, Iron County not satisfied
- Range war: County resolves to solve wild horse problem if BLM prioritizes Bundy cattle
- Range war: BLM, Iron County to work together on feral horse issue
- Property owners sue federal government over prairie dogs
- Utah sheriffs send letter to president, they will defend rights to firearm
Bryan Hyde is a news commentator and co-host of the Perspectives talk show on Fox News 1450 AM 93.1 FM. The opinions stated in this article are his and not representative of St. George News.
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