A Commentary by J. D. Longstreet
Salmon P. Chase, a former Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court, said: "State's rights died at Appomattox." Chief Justice Chase was absolutely correct.
As one considers the current state of affairs between the US government and the individual states, which form the so-called "American Union" today, one absolutely must agree with the former Chief Justice.
For a moment let's put aside the falsity that The War Between the States was fought to force the southern states to give up slavery. In fact, I would argue that that war did not end slavery. In fact, it introduced slavery of an entire nation by stripping the sovereign states of their rights as sovereign states and bound them as serfs/slaves to what had been, up to April of 1865(at least) a lesser entity, the federal government.
An honest student of American history will tell you that the US federal government was created -- by the states- as an agent of those states. It was intended to "represent" the states -- not RULE the states.
That arrangement was turned on its head under the Lincoln administration. Abraham Lincoln trampled the US Constitution on a scale never replicated until our most recent occupant of the Oval Office. Yet, Lincoln gets a pass because, the "intellectualists" will tell you, he was trying to save the Union.
My first question to those intellectualists is always: "Save the Union from WHAT?"
The southern states, which had seceded were not a threat. All they wanted was to be "let alone" as their President, Jefferson Davis, so often said.
As much as one may wish to ignore it .. the Confederates were, indeed, right.
Now, here is a hard truth: Much, if not all, of the conservative political philosophy in America today is based on the political philosophy of the Confederate States of America.
Think I'm wrong?
Then consider the following: Strict construction of the constitution, opposition to pork barrel spending, opposition of protective tariffs, all these were the positions of the Confederates. When you fight to protect the Bill of Rights, you are assuming the Confederate position. When you argue that the US Constitution limits the power and jurisdiction of the federal government, then you are arguing the Confederate position.
If you'd like to read more about this, then visit:
So -- why don't you know this, already? Because our friends on the left -- and yes, on the right -- use the "slavery" thing to block and STOP any discussion of the politics of that era and the lasting effect that war has had on the people of this country.
There can be no argument that the US became a different country in April, 1865. Sovereignty of states ended. Oh, we still like to deceive ourselves and THINK we are sovereign. But any state going against the federal government today will find themselves in court. (As I write this, the country is awaiting a decision from the US Supreme Court on an immigration law the people of the state of Arizona passed a short while ago, with which the federal government disagrees.)
It is a puzzlement that the southern states, the states of the Confederacy, support the Republican Party. The GOP is the party of Lincoln.
The conservative platform of the Republican Party, especially with the Barry Goldwater candidacy in 1964, forged the link between the southern states and the GOP. The Democratic Party was well on its chosen path into Socialism and Marxism and the people of the south could not abide that and were already looking for a political party they could support. When the Republican Party all but adopted the Confederate political philosophy, there was no question to which political party the southern people would pledge their allegiance.
Since 1964, it has been the people of the southern states that have given the GOP its political victories both for the Presidency and for the majorities and near majorities it has enjoyed in the the Congress.
As uncomfortable as it may be for some republicans, if the southern people decided today, for whatever reason, to leave the GOP, then the Republican Party would instantly become a hopeless and impotent minority party with no chance of ever capturing the White House or a majority in either House of the Congress!
However, after the staunch support the southern people have given the GOP over the past decades, the Republican Party has not reciprocated.
It has been under the Republican watch that "... Southerners have watched as their children were used as sociological guinea pigs as one Federal Court after the other bused their children into unwholesome environments; Southerners have watched as Federal government sanctioned discrimination against White people under the guise of "affirmative action" has replaced State sponsored discrimination against Black people under segregation; Southerners have watched as the moral underpinnings of their culture, Christianity, the Bible, and the Ten Commandments, have been routinely purged from their communities while pornography and sodomy are given official protection; and during this time Southerners have had to stand by and tolerate the murder of millions of unborn children under the guise of "freedom of choice" (something that they were not allowed to exercise in their children's education). All of the aforementioned evils were done during the watch of many good Republicans." SOURCE: http://www.kennedytwins.com/good.pdf
So, you STILL believe in state's rights? Oh, there may be a state "privilege" or two, but state's rights simple don't exist anymore. They died at the point of a bloody federal bayonet at a little place called Appomattox Courthouse, Virginia on Palm Sunday in April of 1865. Self-government for Americans died that day -- and big government for Americans was born.
Consider this from General Robert Edward Lee, Commander of the Army of Northern Virginia: "All that the South has ever desired was the Union as established by our forefathers should be preserved and that the government as originally organized should be administered in purity and truth."
THAT, dear reader, in a nutshell, and as explained by General Lee, is what we Americans lost at Appomattox: "the Union as established by our forefathers" and "the government as originally organized." Nearly 700,000 Americans died giving birth to the bloated loathsome blob of the federal government squatting in that drained swamp formerly known as "Foggy Bottom" today. It's tentacles reach into every facet of every American's life today, suffocating and smothering freedom.
If only ... .
But the thing is done. And freedom lost is hardly ever recovered.
Now we know no freedom was granted anyone as a result of that war. All Americans, black and white, were simply moved onto the federal plantation where we are expected/forced to obey our masters. The more things change - the more they stay the same.
General Robert E. lee, lived long enough to see and understand what had happened to the country, a country he loved before -- and after -- the war. He said this: "If I had foreseen the use those people designed to make of their victory, there would have been no surrender at Appomattox Courthouse; no, sir, not by me. Had I foreseen these results of subjugation, I would have preferred to die at Appomattox with my brave men, my sword in my right hand."
Understand: The loss of state's rights affects EVERY state, not just the southern states. But it was the southern states who armed themselves and took to the field of battle to defend state's rights -- and lost. As we now know, it was not JUST the Confederates who lost that day at Appomattox. It was EVERY American in EVERY state over which the federal government holds power.
As a southerner, my family paid in blood, some gave their lives in The Cause. I thank God their blood still flows in my veins.
EVERY American owes a debt to those men who tried valiantly to preserve the rights of the people of their states, and -- as it turned out -- the people of every state then, now, and in the future.
After the war, Jefferson Davis, the former President of the Confederate States of America, made a prediction that Americans in every state can only HOPE will be realized. He said: "The principle [states' rights] for which we contended is bound to reassert itself, though it may be at another time and in another form."
Well, it is "another time," and, I daresay, pounding away on this old battered keyboard is "another form." But I am in the fight, even with the knowledge that the fight for freedom and state's rights still has a high probability of failure, until my lifeless body is committed to the sacred southern soil from whence it came.
As "The Great Reformer" Martin Luther said: "Here I stand. May God help me. I can do no other."
J. D. Longstreet