Contemporary opinions, including those of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, say the idea of a state’s right to secede died with the hundreds of thousands of bloodied victims of the Civil War, and that the sentiment behind the dozens of petitions on a White House website seeking permission for most of the 50 individual governments to leave the union will be fruitless.
But historians would note that even Thomas Jefferson, a “pole star among political philosophers because he based his politics on the eternal, self-evidence, fundamental truths that all men are created free and equal and that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inherent and unalienable rights, among which are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,”
might be remembered for his opinion about states leaving the U.S.
It was in a letter to William B. Giles on Dec. 26, 1825, when Jefferson, who already had seen the fight over the states’ separation from England, the rise of a new nation and the tribulations it faced in its first decades, that he addressed the issue.
In a letter marked “not intended for the public eye,” he wrote that states “should separate from our companions only when the sole alternatives left, are the dissolution of our Union with them, or submission to a government without limitation of powers.”
He continued, “Between these two evils, when we must make a choice, there can be no hesitation.”
Bob Unruh, WND 19 Comments
[11/19/2012 3:31:30 PM]
Fundie Index: 22