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Untied States of AmericaDaniel Johnson, Deputy Executive Editor
States' Rights are a recipe for chaos and eventual tyranny.
(CALGARY, Alberta) - Despite the Constitution, not all Americans are equal. The rights you enjoy—or don’t enjoy—depend on where you live.
Colorado has decriminalized possession of small amounts of marijuana. Cross into Wyoming and you can get a year in prison.
Maryland has repealed the death penalty. Across the border in Delaware there are 17 inmates on death row, awaiting lethal injection.
Iowa, one of the least urbanized states has accepted same-sex marriage while voters in the most urbanized state, California, have voted to reject it.
A woman’s access to abortion ends at 12 weeks in Arkansas, as early as six weeks in North Dakota. It’s 24 weeks in South Dakota. At six weeks most women don’t even know they’re pregnant, so it’s clearly a war of religious zealots against half the American population—women.
Nebraska, West Virginia, Idaho, Hawaii, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Montana, Delaware, South Dakota, Alaska, North Dakota, Vermont and Wyoming have a total population of 16 million (about 5% of nation) yet elect 28% of the senators.
California, Texas, New York and Florida have a total population of about 102 million (33% of nation) yet elect only 16% of the senators.
The Electoral College: A candidate can receive fewer than 50% of the votes cast, yet receive more than 50% of the Electoral votes.
In three-strikes states, if you’re apprehended for the third time shoplifting necessary items for survival (food to feed your family with no other resources available—public or private) you can be sentenced to a long term in prison.
“Fundamental rights cannot be left to the states,” writes Sheldon Bunin of Jackson Heights NY.
“If it were otherwise we could have states which are democracies and others dictatorships and free speech or the right to vote applies in some states and not others. In America there is a right to privacy and the right of equality under the law. We cannot have these things depending on whether fundamental rights are also universal throughout the nation. There is a right to marriage. If you can define marriage as a union of one man and one woman, you can define it as between a Christian man and a Christian woman or a white man, etc., Because one group if people have been discriminated against for 2,000 years that does not mean that the discrimination should continue.
“The Constitution does not create rights even though it guarantees that government shall not interfere with certain rights. The only question before the Supreme Court on gay marriage is where there is a right to marry for straights why are not gay people entitled to the the equal protection of the law. The Court's Justices are not empowered to enact social policy only to answer one question: Given the fact that all people are entitled to the equal protection of the law, are laws taking the right of same sex couples to marry away or refusing to recognize violate the Constitution. Religion, psychology, etc, are irrelevant. Opinion of the Justices should have no weight.”
One interesting aspect to this topic is that you can go to whitehouse.gov and a section called “We the People” where anyone can initiate a petition. If there are 25,000 signatures the government is compelled to notice it.
Some citizens from Austin, Texas started one last year and it gained 2,400 signatures before it expired. The initiators wrote:
“Austin Texas continues to suffer difficulties stemming from the lack of civil, religious, and political freedoms imposed upon the city by less liberally minded Texans. It is entirely feasible for Austin to operate as its own state, within the United States, in the event that Texas is successful in the current bid to secede. It is important for Austin to remain in the union as to do so would protect it’s citizens’ standard of living and re-secure their rights and liberties in accordance with the original ideas and beliefs of our founding fathers.”
Texas is a deep red state, but changing demographics suggest that it could turn blue within the next decade or so. The point is that there is no uniform American culture—even within a state.
The United States is really at least four discordant regions—the New England region, the South, the Mid-West, the Pacific Northwest and California. In each region, the people call themselves Americans but they don't have much culturally in common with each other. The middle part of the continent (what is referred to as the continental U.S.--the area between Canada and Mexico) lost it's best hope for a future in the mid-19th century. They should have let the South go.
Even now, a century and a half later, there is still a substantial minority of Southerners (particularly in Texas) who still long to secede and become great on their own.
Daniel Johnson is a born and raised Calgarian. He is currently working on a book The Occupy Wall Street User Manual which is scheduled for publication in spring 2013 by Polymath Press In 1990 he published his first (and so far, only) book: Practical History: A guide to Will and Ariel Durant’s “The Story of Civilization” (Polymath Press, Calgary) Newly appointed as the Deputy Executive Editor in August 2011, he has been writing exclusively for Salem-News.com since March 2009 and, as of summer 2012, has published more than 210 stories. View articles written by Daniel Johnson
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