State's Rights - Part IV
Establishing Legitimate Authority
So, how did we get so far from our government operating as it was designed? How has the federal government continually managed to overstep its proper authority? As previously mentioned, in large part a succession of activist interpretations by the judiciary including the Supreme Court lies at the root of the problem
The second paragraph of Article VI of the Constitution reads, “This Constitution, and the laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof…shall be the supreme law of the land…” Today, the U. S. Government would have us believe that this “supremacy clause” establishes that any federal law is supreme in its own right. This would mean that our central government is the sole and final arbiter in determining the limitations of its own power, it can grant its own authority.
Indeed, the proponents of big government mistakenly read this clause as, “The laws of the United States (federal law) shall be the supreme law of the land.” Yet, clearly, the supremacy clause says no such thing. Rather, it dictates that the Constitution (and subsequent laws which are consistent with it) is the supreme law of the land.
In resolving disputes of proper authority between the states and the central government, a proper reading of the supremacy clause would merely point us back to the 10th Amendment along with Article I, Section 8. Read improperly, as has too often been the case in the last century, the 10th Amendment is essentially rendered meaningless.
Consider this; as the framework of The Constitution was ratified in 1789 and The Bill of Rights (the first ten amendments) was ratified over two years later, how could it be that the supremacy clause, commerce clause, or anything else contained in the original body of The Constitution was intended to trump the clear limitations of federal authority reiterated in the 10th Amendment? Clearly, they were not.
Therefore, we must depend upon the states to re-claim our rights and assert their guaranteed sovereignty. To accomplish this, it becomes incumbent upon citizens to insist that their state officials strictly abide by a proper interpretation of the U.S. Constitution and exercise their authority on behalf of those who they represent.
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