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Secession: Are We Free To Go? - by Ron Paul

Written by Subject: Secession

by Ron Paul

Is all the recent talk of secession mere sour grapes over the election, or perhaps something deeper?   Currently there are active petitions in support of secession for all 50 states, with Texas taking the lead in number of signatures.  Texas has well over the number of signatures needed to generate a response from the administration, and while I wouldn't hold my breath on Texas actually seceding, I believe these petitions raise a lot of worthwhile questions about the nature of our union. 

Is it treasonous to want to secede from the United States?  Many think the question of secession was settled by our Civil War.  On the contrary; the principles of self-governance and voluntary association are at the core of our founding.  Clearly Thomas Jefferson believed secession was proper, albeit as a last resort. Writing to William Giles in 1825, he concluded 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."

Keep in mind that the first and third paragraphs of the Declaration of Independence expressly contemplate the dissolution of a political union when the underlying government becomes tyrannical. 

Do we have a "government without limitation of powers" yet?  The Federal government kept the Union together through violence and force in the Civil War, but did might really make right? 

Secession is a deeply American principle.  This country was born through secession.  Some felt it was treasonous to secede from England, but those "traitors" became our country's greatest patriots.

There is nothing treasonous or unpatriotic about wanting a federal government that is more responsive to the people it represents.  That is what our Revolutionary War was all about and today our own federal government is vastly overstepping its constitutional bounds with no signs of reform.  In fact, the recent election only further entrenched the status quo.  If the possibility of secession is completely off the table there is nothing to stop the federal government from continuing to encroach on our liberties and no recourse for those who are sick and tired of it.

Consider the ballot measures that passed in Colorado and Washington state regarding marijuana laws.  The people in those states have clearly indicated that they are ready to try something different where drug policy is concerned, yet they will still face a tremendous threat from the federal government.  In California, the Feds have been arresting peaceful medical marijuana users and raiding dispensaries that state and local governments have sanctioned. This shouldn't happen in a free country. 

It remains to be seen what will happen in states that are refusing to comply with the deeply unpopular mandates of Obamacare by not setting up healthcare exchanges.  It appears the Federal government will not respect those decisions either.

In a free country, governments derive their power from the consent of the governed. When the people have very clearly withdrawn their consent for a law, the discussion should be over.  If the Feds refuse to accept that and continue to run roughshod over the people, at what point do we acknowledge that that is not freedom anymore?  At what point should the people dissolve the political bands which have connected them with an increasingly tyrannical and oppressive federal government?  And if people or states are not free to leave the United States as a last resort, can they really think of themselves as free? 

If a people cannot secede from an oppressive government, they cannot truly be considered free.


2 Comments in Response to

Comment by Ed Price
Entered on:

The below is from Team Law at, about a fifth of the way down the page. Go to the link and read the whole page. Then read the whole site and see that application of the law with understanding, is the best way out of our problems with Government.

"... We have also noted that we are concerned about the underlying reasons why the hidden controllers of Corp. U.S. seem to be doing everything in their power to inspire the people to rebel against Corp. U.S. and we see the effect of that underlying intent expressed in some of the State movements towards secession from the Union.  Yet, when we have interviewed with some of the people strongly involved in those movements (as in Texas), we find that the people getting so involved are doing so not out of any sense of remedy; but, out of frustration.  They have neither learned the law nor applied it; but, they got involved in the movement towards secession because they are so fed up with Corp. U.S. moving further and further away from our Constitution and laws that they just want out.  Most of them have not actually thought through the effect of secession to realize that would only make everything worse and would likely end in war and disaster with far worse conditions than they already have (no food, no fuel, no funds, no rights, etc.).  Most of them have simply lost hope and the secessionists have romanced them into the promise of change; but they have failed to take note of the fact that those secessionist promoters have even less of a chance of honoring their promotions than they have that Obama will keep his promises."

Comment by Ed Price
Entered on:

Remember the Viper Militia from the mid '90s? Remember how they were "crucified" for nothing more than enjoying a relaxing sport not much different than deer hunting? Remember how Government tried to make an example of them?

Since that time, the militias have been on a rise. Government has shown the public what needs to be done to remain safe from Government when forming their militia. Thanks, Government, for all your advice about how to bypass you. Thanks for showing us how to grow.

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