Americans will always have guns, one way or another. In South Carolina this week, some lawmakers are talking about the “another” option in 160 year old language.
Way back in the year 1860, South Carolinians were none too enthused with the federal government, who they felt were encroaching on their rights as a state to govern themselves. This was not yet a century after the American people bravely bucked the most powerful nation in the world at the time, Britain, to gain independence from the colonial monarchy. Now, South Carolina’s best and brightest were convinced that history was repeating itself from within.
Directly from the secession declaration of 1860:
In the year 1765, that portion of the British Empire embracing Great Britain, undertook to make laws for the government of that portion composed of the thirteen American Colonies. A struggle for the right of self-government ensued, which resulted, on the 4th of July, 1776, in a Declaration, by the Colonies, “that they are, and of right ought to be, FREE AND INDEPENDENT STATES; and that, as free and independent States, they have full power to levy war, conclude peace, contract alliances, establish commerce, and to do all other acts and things which independent States may of right do.”
They further solemnly declared that whenever any “form of government becomes destructive of the ends for which it was established, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute a new government.” Deeming the Government of Great Britain to have become destructive of these ends, they declared that the Colonies “are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved.”
In pursuance of this Declaration of Independence, each of the thirteen States proceeded to exercise its separate sovereignty; adopted for itself a Constitution, and appointed officers for the administration of government in all its departments– Legislative, Executive and Judicial. For purposes of defense, they united their arms and their counsels; and, in 1778, they entered into a League known as the Articles of Confederation, whereby they agreed to entrust the administration of their external relations to a common agent, known as the Congress of the United States, expressly declaring, in the first Article “that each State retains its sovereignty, freedom and independence, and every power, jurisdiction and right which is not, by this Confederation, expressly delegated to the United States in Congress assembled.”
Now, a new concern over the state’s right to choose it’s own future is coming to fruition, and lawmakers are conjuring up the bravery of their predecessors to make these difficult choices.
South Carolina State Rep. Mike Pitts (R-14) is proposing his state consider secession from the Union rather than face the tyranny of federal gun control.
His proposal comes after former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens pushed a repeal of the Second Amendment, and talk of such an repeal was echoed by others.
Fox News quoted Rep. Pitts saying, “Without a Bill of Rights, our nation is not what it is. I see a lot of stuff where people even talk about totally repealing the Second Amendment, which separates us from the entire rest of the world.”
This is far from the first time that a U.S. state has threatened secession in recent years, with New York State and New York City looking to split, California looking to ditch the Union and each other, and Texas, who always seems to be perpetually toeing the line between statehood and independence on a daily basis.