Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Ten Gallon Hat Amendment

"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.”

Texas Governor Rick Perry does something we don't hear much of these days. In support of a Texas legislature resolution (HCR 50) in support of states' rights set forth under the 10th Amendment of the US Constitution, he discusses returning to the letter and spirit of the US Constitution. Only rubes, unsophisticates, and potential domestic man-causers of illiberal acts discuss that old, faded unmodern and nonprogressive document.

Perry dons his ten gallon hat and speaks plainly, thusly:

Here in Texas, here in the capitol, we typically spend more time talking about the Texas constitution, but it is definitely time to talk about the U.S. Constitution and the protections it guarantees.

I am here today to express my unwavering support for efforts all across our country, but, most of all, here in Texas, to reaffirm the states’ rights affirmed through the Tenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

The Tenth Amendment was enacted by folks who remembered what it was like to be under the thumb of a distant, all-powerful government. Unfortunately, the protections it guarantees have melted away over time.

Since the U.S. Constitution was first ratified, the federal government has slowly, steadily and successfully eroded the notion of state’s rights. The Founding Fathers understood that a one-size-fits-all approach just doesn’t work, especially in a country the size of America, and it certainly doesn’t work for Texas.

Our economic strength, compared to the federal budget mess and other states’ troubles, is evidence that Texans know what’s best for Texas. We’re proof that good things happen when governments lower taxes, reduce spending and encourage private sector growth.

When Washington interferes with our proven approaches, experience tells us what the outcome will be, and it isn’t pretty.

Like the Constitution and the other 26 amendments, the 10th Amendment has been the subject of extended debate, by scholars and lawyers of every sort, but I come down on the side that favors state’s rights over unrestrained federal power.

I believe the Constitution does not empower the federal to override state laws without restraint. I agree with Texas’ 7th governor, Sam Houston, who once said, “Texas has yet to learn submission to any oppression, come from what source it may.”

We didn’t like oppression then and we certainly don’t like it now.

I believe the federal government has become oppressive in its size, its intrusion into the lives of our citizens, and its interference with the affairs of our state.

Texans need to ask themselves a question: do they side with those in Washington who are pursuing this unprecedented expansion of power? Or do they believe in the individual rights and responsibilities laid out in our foundational documents?

Texans need to stand up and be heard, because this state of affairs cannot continue indefinitely.

Returning to the letter and the spirit of the U.S. Constitution, and its essential Tenth Amendment, will free our state and, ultimately, strengthen our Union.

Granted, Governor Perry is up for reelection in 2010, and in some quarters (specifically the cube of an SBD Texan co-worker) he is perceived as an effeminate pussy, but as a consummate pol, he would not stand behind this type of provocative action unless he knew that most of fair majority of Texas voters stood with him. This is good to see because it is healthy for our republic and the elected leaders of these United States to stand up and proclaim on the founding principles and their architecture against Leviathan.

This week, in honor of Texas, SBD will purchase a six pack of Shiner Black Lager (because these are dark times and we need to make use of every little symbol we can).