FORTY STATES DESIRE TO SECEDE FROM THE UNION: TREASON OR ACT OF LIBERTY?
By Fahim A. Knight-El
I am advocate of legal and peaceful dissent because our United States Constitution affords us that right and it would be hypocritical, if I did not acknowledge that these individuals and States who filed petitions to secede from the United States Government have the right to express dissent and present their grievances in a lawful manner. This is protected under the First Amendment Right of the United States Constitution and I do not think that they should feel any repression from the U.S. Government for seeking separation and sovereignty from the United States Government. This is how Washington State framed its secession petition: “Peacefully grant the State of Washington to peacefully withdraw from the United States and to form its own government. Under the auspices of the 9th and 10th Amendments of the Constitution of the United States of America the Citizens of the State of Washington take this grave action in an attempt to wrest sovereignty back unto itself so as to secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and to our posterity”.
Yet, I have always maintained that race is still unresolved in the United States in particular in these neo-confederate States such as Texas (80,000 signatures), Mississippi, North Carolina, Virginia, Tennessee, Kentucky, Arkansas, Georgia, Alabama, etc; (the last time I checked over five hundred thousand people had signed onto the various petitions to secede) have been using the election and now re-election of President Barack Obama to antagonize and instigate the fears of mainly poor and oppressed whites in which to appeal to their historical emotions of their ancestors losing the Civil War. I was visiting Savannah, Georgia, perhaps two years ago and there was a convention being held at the Marriott hotel off General McIntosh Boulevard and the Riverfront under the banner of the Sons of the Confederate Veterans and it was a sight to see this nostalgic era being played out in the costumes and replicas of Civil War weapons, etc. The aura in the hotel gave the impression that they were gearing up to fight and reclaim the South for a second time.
Our Government has become tyrannical, totalitarian and Fascist in which some people are angered about the direction that our nation is headed and view the federal government as impeding on their personal rights and State's rights with impunity. I would agree with this much of their argument; it is no longer a government of the people by the people and for the people. Some Patriots feel that their liberty has been further stomped upon by the reactionary policies of President Barack Obama and the election served as proof positive for the necessity to declare themselves free of Union rule (I would be the first to admit that this sounds like an 18th or 19th century scenario and debate and not an issue of serious modern relevance applicable to the 21st century). Yet, if you do not know by now, these people are serious about seceding from the United States (I must also admit that this is no homogenous or monolithic voice echoing these sentiments, it is perhaps more like a woven together blanket of various ideologies, which ranges from the Ku Klux Klan, Militia groups, strict constitutional constructionist, Tea Party loyalist, Sons/Daughters of the Confederate Veterans, etc., to the far the rightwing of the Republican Party and many other dissatisfied white Americans. They consider themselves as so-called good and God fearing Christians who want to separate from a nation that has become increasingly black and brown. We better play close attention because these petitions could gain momentum. I am of the belief that even the submission of the petition of itself could be considered acts of treason and sedition.
I am assuming that this is a white led movement and if secession is granted, how do some of these states deal with large populations of Latinos (Hispanics), Asians and African Americans and would they be accepted as part of the seceding sovereignty? Many that hold this rightwing agenda of seceding from the Union believe that race—interpreted to mean that black and brown is the problem with America and represents that 47% class that Mitt Romney depicted as looking for government handouts. The variable of race serves as an antagonist contradiction; they could not imagine the Super Pacs spent almost 6 billion dollars collective during this 2012 election season and spent over 2 billion dollars just on the presidential election in which Karl Rove assured the Rightwing that he would deliver them the presidency. Will the elected governors of these states serve as the new presidents of these various proposed new sovereign nations and territories? How will the mineral rites and natural resources be dealt with? Will these sovereign nations be allowed to have their own independent arm forces on U.S. soil and most of all will they be permitted to enter into international treaties and agreements with enemy nations of the United States? What will be their arrangement with the United States relative to who will control the vital and strategic ports and waterways that are of most important to the United States national security? The notion of seceding as one can tell is a complex theory and will pose problems for the petitioners and the United States.
There is conservative website named RedState led by Erik Erickson who has from time to time endorsed the idea of Texas (the lone Star State) having the right to secede from the Union and even Texas Governor and United States Presidential candidate Rick Perry has endorsed the seceding movement from time to time. Now, reason with me, because I have to point out the double standard in order to bring some balance to this article and this is where me and most white patriots part ways; just take a moment and imagine if Muslims in the United States were to have filed this same type petitions and ask for a state which to secede and separate from the United States and declare themselves as a government inside a government. There would have been tremendous outrage spewed by the ignorant that Muslims would establish a sovereign state based on Sharia rule and some of these same liberty seekers would be opposed to Muslims seeking to secede from the Union; moreover, they would not even be allowed to have this type conversation without persecution and prosecution. This automatically would have called for intense Federal Bureau of Investigation scrutiny and surveillance, and no doubt it would have been met by the long arm of the U.S. Patriot Act, Military Commission Act, Anti-Terrorism Acts, National Defense Authorization Act, United States Justice Department and any other arsenal at the disposal of the office of Homeland Security could use to halt such an action that would be viewed as anti-American and the question of secession in of itself could be considered a declaration of war. These individuals filing these type petitions and anyone associated with them relative to post 9-11, perhaps could be argued that they should be classified as Enemy Combatants and enemies against the State (this government recourse is not without precedent).
For example, Huey P. Newton and Bobby Seale (founders of the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense) and George and Jonathan Jackson (Soledad Brothers) and other black revolutionaries were prime targets of the United States Government counterintelligence program dubbed Cointelpro by FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover. The United States Government implemented massive and widespread acts of repression aimed at all levels of the Black Power Movement for daring to declare themselves a self-defense organization that advocated Black Nationalism and who evoked the Second Amendment Right to bear arms and even raised the question of secession. Many of these black freedom fighters lost their lives and others received long term prison sentences like the Panther 21 and others like Elmer ‘Geronimo’ Pratt who was wrongly convicted and after serving over 25 years in California State Prison system was exonerated, Mumia Abu-Jamal (Philadelphia Chapter of the Black Panther Party) who still languishes in the American penal institution with a death warrant over his head.
The Black Panther Party had a 10 Point Plan; which number 10 stated: “When, in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bonds which have connected them with another, and to assume, among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation”.
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed; that, whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute a new government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and, accordingly, all experience hath shown that mankind are most disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But, when a long train of abuses and usurpation, pursuing invariably the same object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security.”
The United States Government took all actions to disrupt and neutralize militant and radical black leadership and worked to compromise their organizational effectiveness by sending U.S. Government agent provocateurs who were used to instigate and cause internal confusion in order to incite police, which led to many Panthers losing their lives at the hands of racist police. Eldridge Cleaver in 1968 published his most famous book titled, “Soul on Ice” in which he wrote a very interesting letter to then Governor Ronald Reagan requesting that he be pardoned and sentence be commuted (Cleaver declared himself a political prisoner). Many do not know that Cleaver while serving prison time had converted to the Nation of Islam and teachings of Elijah Muhammad. The Honorable Elijah Muhammad also advocated separation and secession and many do not know that the Black Panther Party "10 Point Plan" was drawn from the Black Muslims and Nation of Islam Program “What the Muslims Want” and “What the Muslims Believe” Muhammad stated: “We want our people in America whose parents or grandparents were descendants from slaves, to be allowed to establish a separate state or territory of their own--either on this continent or elsewhere. We believe that our former slave masters are obligated to provide such land and that the area must be fertile and minerally rich. We believe that our former slave masters are obligated to maintain and supply our needs in this separate territory for the next 20 to 25 years--until we are able to produce and supply our own needs”.
“Since we cannot get along with them in peace and equality, after giving them 400 years of our sweat and blood and receiving in return some of the worst treatment human beings have ever experienced, we believe our contributions to this land and the suffering forced upon us by white America, justifies our demand for complete separation in a state or territory of our own”
They hailed one bright spot in this recent presidential election relative to electing close to 30 Republican Governors (or adding to the Republican count of conservative governors) and I am willing to bet you these are some of the States who filed petitions to secede from the United States. Here is how the state of the Commonwealth of Virginia petition read: “As the founding fathers of the United States of America made clear in the Declaration of Independence in 1776: "When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation." "...Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, that whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and institute new Government..."
They are masters at disguising their real intent by hiding behind politics. Many of today’s secession movement still possess a 16th and 17th century colonial mentality in which in their worldview, as well as their paradigm has been shaped by historical nostalgia and from this mindset, Chattel Slavery and the Civil War (1861-1865) are also unresolved (the Dred Scott Decision and the Missouri Compromise) and other slave legislation (they believe that at some point they will redeem themselves relative to losing the Civil War and will one day physically fight to regain their great, great great, great grandparents glory). These States are hiding behind their so-called political dissatisfaction, but from a white supremacy perspective, they are more angered that our country is being led by President Barack Obama, a black man and they would rather secede from the Union, then to remain under his ruler-ship for another four years. But here is the contradiction they claim to be advocates of patriotism and democracy and possess a deep seated belief in liberty. But I thought in theory the Revolutionary War (1770-1776)—Declaration of Independence with the 16 Colonies breaking away from the ruler-ship and domination of Great Britain and the U.S. Constitutional Conventions held in Philadelphia (the city coined the city of brotherly love, which is direct Masonic lingo) and culminated with the formulation of the U.S. declaring itself one nation. Furthermore, U.S. Constitution in 1787 was rooted in the principles of freedom, justice and equality (and I was taught that the Civil War was fought to keep this nation one and unified). Many revisionist historians agree and maintained as Charles A. Beard wrote in his treatise titled: "An Economic Interpretation of the United States Constitution" (1913) the constitutional language in principle and intent favored white male property owners. Thus, white women and blacks were permitted from voting, which lie the bases of American democracy. Blacks were written in the U.S. Constitution as chattel (property) and were deemed 3/5 of a human being.
The South lost the Civil War and most reasonable historians would agree that slavery was the central issue of the Civil War (1861-1865) because it was the economic driving force of the nation at that time and perhaps the most value commodity in the History of America; but one should not be mistaken because the North and the South benefited from slave labor. I recently read a piece authored by Donald W. Livingston titled, “Why the War Was Not About Slavery” Livingston stated: “We think of slavery as an alien and "un-American" practice confined to the South in the 19th century. But an honest look at American history reveals a quite different picture. Slavery was woven into the economic, political, and cultural fabric of the Northern states from the beginning. The first African slaves were brought to New England in 1638 in exchange for enslaved Indians. Boston began importing slaves from Africa in 1644. For 164 years New Englanders sold slaves throughout the Western Hemisphere”. Jefferson Davis and Robert Lee, the faces of the Confederate South had declared that the South would secede from the Union before they would capitulate and give up slavery. The South viewed slavery strictly as an economic necessity (we have always questioned the moral ineptness of this evil institution) and these wealthy white property owners were not willing to cripple their profitable economic enterprise by giving up their labor force without a fight. Some African Americans view Abraham Lincoln as a hero because he so-called freed the slaves on September 22, 1962 with the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation (but actually it would ultimately be the Thirteen Amendment to the United States Constitution in 1965 that truly abolished slavery); however the slaves that he freed in the Confederate South, he had no jurisdiction over those slaves.
Lincoln used the issue of slavery as a strategic and tactful maneuver to create social and political tension for the Confederates and to create military discord in order to disrupt South‘s efforts to succeed from the Union. Most Historians have argued that if Lincoln could have maintained the Union and kept slavery as an institution, he would have done exactly that and for that reason this writer does not view Lincoln as a philanthropic humanitarian who valued black people in this over-all conflict. J.A. Rogers gives this assessment in his book titled, “Africa’s Gift to America: The Afro-American in the Making and Saving of the United States : With New Supplement, Africa and Its Potentialities”.
I have been a harsh critic of President Barack Obama since he appeared on the radar as a presidential candidate in 2008 as a Rothschild, Rockefellers and Kissinger agent, but to those who are not aware of these entities, perhaps view his two elections as the greatest form of democratic expression—this was seen in Obama receiving over three and half million of the popular vote (surely one could argue that the people had spoken) and received over 300 electoral College votes. This negative sentiments and backlash represents the racial and historical divide in the United States.
However, some would further, argue that the Civil War was about States rights and this has been debated since the formulation of the United States as a government and nation in 1787—federal authority (central government) versus States right to exercise self-determination; but no one could deny that slavery created a political rift and social tension between two bourgeoisie classes of white men (aristocratic property owners from the North and South). This was the primary reason the southern states were literally up in arms. The North (the Union Army and leadership) were mandating that the south give up their most valuable asset, which was free slave labor. Agriculture and farming was the economic way of life for the South and it was African slaves for 310 years who plowed, planted, excavated and worked from dawn to dusk (never even received the 40 acres and a mule for their servitude).
This free labor created a power Elite aristocratic class and even to this day their wealth has transcended time and eventually was used to establish banking houses. The cotton gin was a relatively new invention and technology had not advanced enough to do away with the need for human labor. And to this very day the farms and fields (agri-business) of America are full of brown hands (migrant workers who moves with the planting seasons and is even allowed work visas to enter the United States from Mexico and other Central and South American nations) picking the cotton, tobacco, vegetables, fruits and all manner of produce that sustains this nation (the Latinos are the new slaves). Slavery was an integral part to making America a wealthy society; thus, before the factories in the North became the focal point of American business, it was agriculture (numerous of cash crops ranging from cotton to tobacco). Also the early American settlers could not have survived without the Indians who literally saved the very people who would later exterminate them, and the African Slaves who built the early infrastructure of the United States have been left as second class citizens and vagabonds of the earth. The U.S. economy was built and dependent on slavery; many of the Founder Fathers of this nation and the framers of the U.S. Constitution were vast landowners and slaveholders.
Will these people who are looking to secede from the United States represent the impetus and beginning of an internal Civil War?
Fahim A. Knight, Chief Researcher for keeping it Real Think Tank located in Durham, NC; our mission is to inform African Americans and all people of goodwill, of the pending dangers that lie ahead; as well as decode the symbolism and reinterpreted the hidden meanings behind those who operate as invisible forces, but covertly rules the world. We are of the belief that an enlightened world will be better prepared to throw off the shackles of ignorance and not be willing participants for the slaughter. Our MOTTO is speaking truth to power. Fahim A. Knight-EI can be reached at fahimknight@ yahoo.com.
Stay Awake Until We Meet Again,
Fahim A. Knight-El