Mandeville, LA – Exclusive Transcript – “This is another interesting point of discussion when we talk about this. Exactly what is a State? Is a State a geographical entity? Well, you could say that you call the State of Georgia, for example, Georgia because of the border it has with Tennessee and South Carolina and Alabama and Florida, which are very well-defined and well-known, but does that make it a State or is that just a boundary where that State ends and the next State begins?” Check out today’s transcript for the rest…
Begin Mike Church Show Transcript
Mike: This is another interesting point of discussion when we talk about this. Exactly what is a State? What is a State? Is a State a geographical entity? Well, you could say that you call the State of Georgia, for example, Georgia because of the border it has with Tennessee and South Carolina and Alabama and Florida, which are very well-defined and well-known, but does that make it a State or is that just a boundary where that State ends and the next State begins? I think it’s the latter and not the former. Then what makes the State of Georgia a State? Is it the General Assembly of Georgia or the Georgia Senate? Or viewed as a whole, the government of the State of Georgia, is that the State of Georgia? If that’s the State of Georgia, then that legislature would never have to stand for a reelection, could reappoint itself, in other words could perpetuate itself, and could write any law they wanted to and enforce it on anyone inside those boundaries. But is that the case? No.
What did they just do? They’re a sovereign people and they just formed, basically, a government. They said: This is your power. If someone trespasses, shoot them.
We’re at level three now. What is a State for republicans? Well, if we ask John Taylor of Caroline County and other republicans of the 18th and 19th century, they would define the State as the people of a State. This, to me, is where it gets interesting. If you thought you were blown away by the Incorporation Doctrine, my advice to you is to pour yourself a bourbon right now because you’re really not going to get this. You’re really going to be angry about this. This concept of freedom that I’m about to explain to you is just going to piss you off, in other words. So you three guys on the Twitter feed, pour the bourbon. As a matter of fact, make yourself a mint julep. It’s a great drink on a Friday.
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So if the State is the people, then the people exercise or have all inherent sovereign powers. You, as an individual, then, have sovereign powers. You are sovereign. You are a creature of God. He put you here on this Earth. He endowed you with certain inalienable rights, as Jefferson properly reported. He gave you the ability to believe in him, faith, and the right to defend yourself, the responsibility to feed yourself. All these things make up a person. A person is sovereign. A sovereign person, then, can associate with other sovereign people and collectively, together, they can decide, “There are some things we ought to do for our own mutual benefit, don’t you think, John?” — “Well, Sam, I think we should. What do you think they should be?”
Now we are at the stage where we’re talking about forming a government. My buddy Dwayne Stovall, who’s running for the Senate in Texas, likes to explain this, and I think he got this from our other mutual friend, Andrew Lees, about the ranchers that get together who are going to go away for the weekend and decide to appoint someone to watch over their property and give them power to shod anyone that comes on the land. What did they just do? They’re a sovereign people and they just formed, basically, a government. They said: This is your power. If someone trespasses, shoot them. That’s government.
Sovereign people, then, gather together and choose to then appoint these external individuals to carry out some specific chores or tasks for them that they don’t think private industry or individuals themselves can or should do, like maybe administering a code of justice where the Ten Commandments is at the root of the law, and we want you guys to enforce this law, and from time to time we may come to you and ask you to alter the law. After you’ve enforced it, we’re going to elect judges. They will decide whether or not someone is guilty. You guys are then going to hire people to run a jail. You’re going to lock them up if they’re guilty, or we’re going to have a clerk of this court and you’re going to fine them if they’re guilty. These are all functions of sovereign people delegating some authority to an external body because they have agreed. This is a voluntary act. They have agreed that exercising this power together as one will be better for all concerned than individuals trying to make their own laws up one at a time.
To answer the question then of “What is a State?,” for example, the State of North Carolina’s constitution says you cannot secede and pledges absolute loyalty to the federal government, Articles IV and V of the North Carolina Constitution. Okay, fine. But it’s a very, very crafty explanation when it says that the State will, with all its energies, resist secession. Well, using my and Taylor of Caroline’s and others’ definitions of what a State is, if the people in North Carolina choose they would like to secede, they are the State. No prior State, then, could bind the current State. It’s a very fascinating concept. If we perceive and then act upon a State always, in its governmental functions, having to obtain the approbation of the people, but at the same time, if the people are wise, they are relying more on an external law as opposed to an expressed law, in other words, a moral code, to be faithful, to practice good Christian values and traditions and customs and what have you. We don’t need to write these things down. They don’t need to be enforced by anyone. They’re enforced by you saying: I don’t want to be in sin, so I’m not going to violate those things. You don’t need a sheriff to enforce most of those sins.
So if a State is the people, then the State is then free, always, to alter whatever those constitutions say. Remember, they’re voluntary agreements; they’re compacts that are entered into. Here’s the best example that I can give you of what I’m describing here. You’ll find this explanation better than I just butchered it in Albert Taylor Bledsoe’s Is Davis a Traitor; or, Was there a constitutional right to secession previous to the War of 1861? As Bledsoe explains it, and as Madison and others explained it, when the Constitution was set to be ratified, read the article that describes how it’s going to be ratified. It is not going to be ratified by the state legislatures. Why? Because the state legislatures were not sovereign. They were creatures of the sovereign people. Instead, the method of ratification is what? Conventions chosen by the people, in other words, conventions chosen by the sovereign people. That’s the way it was in every state that ratified. Think about that. Understand that all power originates with the people.
This is not an advertisement or a monologue encouraging mass democracy. It’s anything but. It is, though, to encourage you that at all levels, again using the State of Georgia, the State of Georgia’s Assembly and Senate and governor, they do not control and are not free to tyrannize the people of Georgia because they feel like it or they want to. They are supposed to be acting as the people’s agents, in certain very limited capacities, and for certain very limited instances. That’s the extent of it. That’s it, nothing more, nothing less. If we deign to assign or enumerate a power to you, we expect you to discharge it, State of Georgia government, and that’s it. We don’t want anything more. Don’t try to create any new ones. That’s all we’re giving you. If you try to create a new one, we’re going to un-elect you because we are the sovereign people, or we have a tribunal or council of review that can choose to remove you or impeach you from office.
Understanding the concept of what a State is and then who or what makes up a State and what sovereignty is will help you understand almost everything else that comes from republicanism, and then from federalism as the men you call founding fathers understood it. I hope that helps to explain it a little bit.
End Mike Church Show Transcript