DICK BAYNTON: States Rights (And Wrongs)

Dick Baynton

Amendments IX and X (9 & 10) are similar in limiting Constitutional rights by Federal and State government and by the people. Both of these Constitutional Amendments (along with all Amendments preceding) were ratified on December 15th, 1791.

The ninth amendment states as follows: “The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.” Amendment 10 takes a step further saying as follows: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.”

The purpose of these first 10 amendments was to clarify the purpose of the Constitution as stated in the ‘Declaration of Independence’ formulated and published by the Congress on July 4th, 1776 as follows: “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….

Some of the following powers of federal government are understood to prevail: Raising and maintaining armed forces, declaring war, collecting certain taxes, regulating interstate commerce, coining and printing currency, establishing weights and measures, establishing and regulating national banks and other powers considered necessary to carry out Constitutional laws. States and local governments establish K-12 education, traffic laws and regulations, state, county & municipal taxes and other levies, statutes and ordinances, in-state commerce, licenses for marriage, driving a vehicle, local businesses and establishing and maintaining police and fire departments.

The federal Department of Health, Education and Welfare was split up and the new, ‘Department of Education’ was created at the federal level on October 17th, 1979 during the Jimmy Carter presidency. Considered #1 in high school and college education in the world 40 years ago, by 2009 the US was ranked 18th (among 36 industrialized nations) and currently we are 38th in math and 24th in science. The annual cost (budget) of our Federal Department of Education is $68 billion. Did we move education decisions from local school boards to the Washington D.C. Swamp?

In the same year of 1979 on April 1st, FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) was created and now has 11,700 employees with a 2020 budget of $28.7 billion. Notable problem with FEMA is their mismanagement of ‘National Flood Insurance’ that loses money annually (current debt is $ 20+ billion).

Immigration disagreements between political parties and states has taken on awesome proportions over the past couple decades. It is notable that citizens who reject the notion of allowing illegal aliens to receive driver’s licenses, free healthcare and other benefits are called racists while many of the illegal aliens are called ‘dreamers.’ Sanctuary jurisdictions demonstrate abject disobedience of federal laws.

Marijuana and its derivatives are fully legal in 11 states and Washington D.C., prohibited in Idaho, Nebraska and South Dakota and legal for medical use in 33 states. However, federal law deems marijuana as a schedule 1 drug meaning it is perceived to have no medical value and a high potential for abuse.

Our state legislatures and staffs are over 33,000 in number while our national Congress (House & Senate) amounts to 535 members plus staffs of about 6,000. Our President and Chief Executive includes almost 400 staff members and at last count in 2018 there were 634,447 USPS workers. Has our bureaucracy grown too large and languid to manage?

Legislators at all levels need to intensify their loyalty and allegiance to their constituents instead of their party. The current impeachment activity has been cover for hatred; our legislators must appeal to the concerns of the needy and the greedy, the workers and the shirkers, the boys with toys and girls with curls. We must replace career politicians with constitutional patriots and we must demand term limits of all elected officials.

The ranks of government workers must be reduced by consolidating work groups while disposing of wasted time and money. We must reduce the $23 trillion national debt, create and enforce immigration law and our sovereignty, define the demarcation line between states and federal rights. Politicians must don the mantle of adulthood and seek avenues to solving problems and reject the mendacious path to socialist mediocrity.

Dick Baynton