Mandeville, LA – Exclusive Audio and Transcript – These are scary times, ladies and gentlemen. We can sit here and discuss these things all we want. We may be overreaching. We may be being a bit hyperbolic. I think the fact that there’s actually a discussion going on that’s going to inexorably affect the lives and fortunes of over 300 million people, and less than 200 people are involved in a decision, that tells me everything I need to know about the formatics of this. We have now reached the point where there really is no self-government. We do have people that actually believe and are ready to act upon their own impulses and what they think our situation ought to be and the way we ought to deal with things. Dark times, ladies and gentlemen, but in the dark time there arises opposition. Check out the rest in today’s audio and transcript…
Begin Mike Church Show Transcript
Mike: Would any good, self-governing citizen of these United State — notice I said State, not States — think that the office of the President of the United States had any authority whatsoever to convene a meeting and then choose to outlaw or take from the shelf a certain box or brand of breakfast cereal? I would think that most people would laugh at that and say: Mike, that’s not even close. That’s not even apples to oranges. Oh, but it is, because we’re not talking about breakfast cereal. We’re talking about life and death. We’re actually talking about government force, which can be used against citizen resistance. The citizen can resist, and the reason we have the Second Amendment is to ensure — of course, I diverge from the NRA in corporation point of view — but the reason we have a Second Amendment is to ensure that the general government cannot accrue enough firepower to itself so that it can become tyrannical.
Ladies and gentlemen, even before there was a Second Amendment, George Mason brought this up in the Federal Convention in Philadelphia in September of 1787. He foresaw this. He foresaw unitary, meaning singular executives, doing exactly what President Obama is about to do at the behest of the Biden task force. He asks the question: How are the people of the states to defend themselves? Of course, in the federalists, we were told: That could never happen. The president doesn’t have that kind of authority. Come now, Mr. Henry, you’re being ridiculous. This is preposterous. Yet here we are discussing with great apprehension what it is that is going to come from the office of the vice president on Tuesday and then what the president is going to do to enact that or try to make that law.
That does not mean, and we talked about this a little yesterday, that the people the states have to accept this. It doesn’t mean that they have to go along with it. It doesn’t mean that the state legislatures have to accept it. I’m taken aback by — I believe the Washington Post Editorial Board is onto the core of the matter here. Hang on now, Mr. President, just cool your jets. You can suggest things, but if we’re understanding where it is you’re going with this, that’s a bit of a stretch. Maybe that is President Obama’s intention. If it is to overreach and if it is to do what we fear it is he’s going to do, then is he a president or has he now appointed himself as a king? Has he now made himself answerable to no one other than God, a dictator?
These are scary times, ladies and gentlemen. We can sit here and discuss these things all we want. We may be overreaching. We may be being a bit hyperbolic. I think the fact that there’s actually a discussion going on that’s going to inexorably affect the lives and fortunes of over 300 million people, and less than 200 people are involved in a decision, that tells me everything I need to know about the formatics of this. We have now reached the point where there really is no self-government. We do have people that actually believe and are ready to act upon their own impulses and what they think our situation ought to be and the way we ought to deal with things. Dark times, ladies and gentlemen, but in the dark time there arises opposition. In the opposition, there is light. People are going to claim and rightfully say: No, you do not have that authority. Just reading through the Washington Post editorial “Biden gun task force must not overreach”:
A sense of urgency is the most ephemeral thing in politics. That’s why the debate over gun control is reaching a key moment. The opportunity to do something serious about gun violence must not be lost. [Mike: As you said, Andrew, they want the general government to do something.] Vice President Biden, heading up the task force created after the Newtown, Connecticut school massacre, kept the issue alive this week in a series of high-profile meetings with interested groups, from victims of gun violence to the NRA. The next step is to move from talk to action.
The working group is right to think big, yet it must be cognizant that legislation will face stiff opposition from the NRA. [Mike: The Washington Post Editorial Board is wrong on that. They will face stiff opposition from the free citizens of these United States. The NRA is just the representative agency. The NRA represents gun owners. They represent free people, or people that maybe in a deluded sense believe they are free.] In today’s polarized environment, an omnibus bill might offer everyone something to oppose. It would be a mistake to ask Congress for a package so big that it sinks. We support reinstatement of the expired ban on sales of new assault weapons.
Mike: Just as I was theorizing this week, the earlier rumblings coming out of the White House were that by executive order the president is going to try to reinstate the gun ban. I’m still mulling over in my mind how that is even possible. Under what authority do you claim that an act of Congress that has expired can be revived? If the president can revive the assault weapons ban from the ‘90s be executive order, what else can he revive? Can he revive the Alien and Sedition Acts, even though Congress repealed them? Can he revive the laws that were used to subjugate the Southern states after the War of Northern Aggression? Can he impose basically what was military martial law before the Posse Comitatus Act? Can he just say: I don’t like Posse Comitatus Act. It limits what I can do in this. By executive order, I’m going to repeal it. Can he? Will he? I don’t know. I’m still trying to figure out what benefit this accrues to the Obama administration to do this. We are, after all, a conglomeration of 311 million people, and at least a third of us own weapons. What do they think is to be accomplished by this?
The White House would be wise to consider at least two other measures that polls suggest enjoy public support. One would be to require universal background checks for gun sales, closing a loophole in which more than 40 percent of sales, and perhaps up to half, are not subject to such checks, including through the Internet and at gun shows. The other would be federal legislation to tighten the definitions and penalties for gun trafficking, a problem that plagues the border with Mexico.
Beyond these, the White House can show leadership on the related issues of mental health and of violence in entertainment and video games. But the urgency of action, and the deep polarization of our politics, means the administration should choose its legislative priorities carefully, aiming for those with broad public support and a reasonable chance of approval.
Mike: I have a question. If there is broad public support to do an end around or ignore the Fourth Amendment, does that mean there is moral authority to do so? Does that mean that because there’s broad public support to do something that then there is moral authority and thus moral support to do it? If there is broad public support, say 51 percent — 58 percent of the people think that anyone that has earned over $200,000 in any calendar year is some sort of a miscreant that needs to be smacked down by an angry populous and have any of that wealth that remains confiscated from them and redistributed to the rest of us. Does that mean that there is moral authority to do so?
This is where all these things converge. Under what authority does the Vice President of the United States and then the President claim to be able to act in this manner? Aren’t the American people in the aggregate, aren’t they already reacting to this? Aren’t we seeing armed guards put at schools because the citizenry approves or demands it? Aren’t we seeing discussions in the state legislatures about all of these momentous events and issues? Aren’t we seeing them being discussed where they should be discussed, amongst the people, that they’re going to immediately and directly effect? I think we are. Under what authority then does one man or a small group of men claim to be able to act on behalf of 311 million people? That really is the decision.
If you read your U.S. Constitution from start to finish, if you know a little bit about the way it was drafted and then the fight over its ratification, then you have to know that this is one of the things that was protested mightily against and feared it would happen. We were told it could not possibly happen, that no sane person would ever try to force the people of the United States to live under such a tyrannical form of government. You would never do it. The proper safeguards were in place, division of power, distribution of powers and authorities would prevent this. There was not enough power that was concentrated in the center or a consolidated government that could ever possibly do that under the mantle of doing it, under the Constitution and this, that and the other.
Just with the existence of this task force and the importance and prestige that has been granted by our almighty federal overlords, in our various media outlets and other governing agencies across the states, we basically do have some form of a one-man dictatorship. Even though they claim to be soliciting the public for participation and input, their minds are already made up. We know this because on the first day they were meeting, we know the vice president tipped the hand that there was an executive order coming on this. What exactly is going on here?
I think, for at least some people, this is a push too far. There are going to be serious repercussions over this. I’ve got to tell you, just in having casual conversations with people, this particular issue has the potential to be in some manner a deal breaker. Some people just say: That’s it, you crossed the final line. I will not follow you and I will not obey. These are dangerous, serious times. I don’t know if you can tell in the seriousness of my voice and in the solemn manner that I’m trying to approach this, without injecting any humor into it, this is really serious stuff. There are very serious issues that are at play.
I don’t think the Washington Post Editorial Board has gone as far as they should. Andrew, you also sent me an editorial from the Washington Times titled “Trying to nudge the Constitution out of place.” Paul E. Peterson writes. I think Mr. Peterson is perfectly in tune to the situation at hand.
Will 2013 come to be known as the year of presidential decree? The year the president ignored Congress, changed the rules of government and put into place whatever policies he saw fit? The year the United States ended what has been called its “obsession” with its Constitution?
End Mike Church Show Transcript