Friday, 16 November 2012

Secession States 'Dis' United States of America

Sometimes you just have to laugh smugly .... I predicted a few weeks ago that many Americans would increasingly consider themselves disenfranchised if the US continued the pattern of the coasts voting Democrat and the central landmass voting Republican. Admittedly New Mexico and Colorado break up the map, but in general this has been the voting pattern for the last three or four elections.

Final US Election Results

Well it appears that more than 100,000 Americans have petitioned the White House to allow their states to secede from the US, after President Barack Obama's re-election. The Whitehouse is forced to answer if any one question gets more than 25,000 supporters (ours is 100,000).

Now technically The US constitution contains no clause allowing states to leave the union, and indeed that fought a war about this (and not by the way to free the slaves as many people think). But most of the petitions are quoting the opening line of America's 'Declaration of Independence' from Britain, in which America's founders stated their right to "dissolve the political bands" and form a new nation ....

 "When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation."

....... which is about as strong an argument as the gun lobby uses to support the right to carry weapons about. The phrase "right of the people to keep and bear arms", is actually not quite the same when read in the full "A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed" .... which implies another thing altogether.

So oddly, while the US courts (District of Colombia decision) backs the gun lobby, by taking the context of a few words out of a larger sentence, it will most certainly not apply that very same 'logic' to another part of a sentence, from another part of the same document ...... its an odd old world.

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