In 1787, when the States were debating whether to abolish the Articles of Confederation and ratify the U.S. Constitution, Patrick Henry and the Anti-Federalists at the time saw major flaws in the new document. Led by Henry, those patriots worried, among other things that the position of president, then a novelty, might evolve into a monarchy.
Over 230 years later in the midst of a COVID-19 pandemic, this very situation is evident today. Even if the office was perhaps initially meant to be equal to Congress, the president has become a democratically elected, term-limited monarch.
Consider the president being called the “leader of the free world” or “most powerful person on earth”. Consider the anxiety in every election cycle in determining the next president on the basis of what he will do for or against the people.
Consider today’s monarch announcing, “when somebody is the President of the United States, they have total authority“. Consider also the same monarch telling his ‘subjects’, “the President of the United States calls the shots“. And even though he made an effort to walk it back, those words cannot be unheard. Consider further this monarch declaring, “I’ve given them (state governors) great discretion. If, however, I see somebody doing something that’s egregious or wrong, I will stop it in two seconds”. Assuming undelegated power in the midst of the existing health crisis, the current holder of that office has just made these very statements to the people of the several states. The Anti-Federalist’s prediction has again reared its ugly head.
This monarch, supported by his government minions in the federal bureaucracy as well as in the states, prohibited working and told the people: don’t congregate, stay home. We were firmly informed that being locked down, facing food shortages, being unemployed and otherwise having our rights as free men and women abridged at the whim of would-be tyrants was for our own good and protection — the right thing to do — and those who knew better than we would keep us in line. Never in history has a civilization destroyed its own economy because it feared getting sick.
So in the not too distant future, when this crisis has passed into the latest chapter of man’s history, those folks who found it so easy to convince us that we survived because it was they who guided us to our salvation will never relax their grip but will further restrict the people’s pursuit of liberty and independence. Why? Because they have learned from us that they can. And so we may be but mere moments away from repeating the words of George Orwell’s Winston Smith in his classic novel, 1984: “But it was all right, everything was all right, the struggle was finished. He had won the victory over himself. He loved Big Brother.”
It’s past time to break away from the oppression and begin to act like the free men and women we say we are. Let’s begin now to preserve our future. The Florida League of the South can show you where to start.