26 Sept 2013
Okay, but what about the rest of the Constitution?
By: Larry Marciniak
Sept. 17th was the anniversary of the adoption of the United States Constitution in 1787.
I was invited to and attended a reading of the Constitution in Louisburg. The body of the original Constitution was read but what followed alarmed me.
The “patriots” read only the first 10 amendments, commonly known as the Bill of Rights.
After the reading of the Tenth Amendment, it was announced that, that concluded the reading of the Constitution.
My reaction was, “What!?”
Had they stopped at the body of the original Constitution, their actions could have made sense since that was all that was introduced as of the anniversary being commemorated.
The Bill of Rights was adopted in 1791. But what would a Tea Party function be without the Second and Tenth Amendments?
Amendments 11 through 27 were conveniently omitted.
I can understand omitting 21 and 18 since the former nullified the latter, but the other 15 profoundly affect the original document, in fact nullifying parts of it in some instances. The fact is these self-proclaimed patriots and defenders of the Constitution don’t like most of what the Amendments numbered higher than 10 have done and choose to ignore them.
Unfortunately, that is denying reality.
Here is a very brief rundown of what these “patriots” ignored:
XI: Made states responsible to the citizens.
XXI: Provides the procedure for electing the President and Vice President, (replacing Article II, Section 1, Clause 3).
XIII: Abolished slavery.
XIV: Deals with citizenship, equal protection, due process and equal protection among other things.
XV: Grants voting rights exclusive of “race, color or previous condition of servitude,” (nullifies the three-fifths clause – Article I, Section 2, Paragraph 3).
XVI: Grants Congress the right to levy an income tax.
XVII: Provides for direct election of Senators.
XIX: Grants the vote to women.
XX: The President’s term starts at noon on Jan. 20 following the election.
XXII: Term limits the Presidency.
XXIII: Grants the District of Columbia electoral votes.
XXIV: Eliminated poll taxes.
XXV: Provides for filling a vacancy in the office of Vice President.
XXVI: Grants the vote to 18 year-olds.
XXVII: Prohibits Congress from increasing or decreasing its pay during the same session it passes the legislation.
How could 13, 14 and 15 – the Reconstruction Amendments – be overlooked by a group who continues to claim there is no racism and bigotry among their ranks? Add to that 24 which was Jim Crow’s way to circumvent the 15th for decades.
Amendments 19, 23 and 26 are equally politically motivated. The significance of the Tea Party is rooted in their takeover of the Republican Party. Self-preservation of their importance is dependent on their ability to help Republicans win elections.
Women, residents of the District of Columbia and young people are not strong Republican demographics.
Amendment 16 is a no-brainer. The movement’s name is an acronym for taxed enough already so opposing the income tax is a natural. Nobody loves money being removed from them or the entity they blame, the IRS, so demonizing both will win you some friends and followers.
Since state legislatures are less expensive to take over, opposing the people selecting their United States senators is another politically expedient move. Therefore Tea Party/Republican opposition to the 17th Amendment is understandable.
One recent proposal of the Tea Party/Republicans, which was in fact passed by the Republican controlled House, is not to pay Congress until it passed a budget. Had anyone in the Tea Party/Republican caucus taken the time to read the 27th Amendment they would see that such action is clearly unconstitutional. However, the bill made for good rhetoric to gin up support among their base.
Perhaps willful ignorance of many facts, including 17 Constitutional Amendments, explains the actions of this group.
Larry Marciniak is the Chairman of the Franklin County Democratic Party
Question motives behind the words
By: Steve Trubilla
You should question the motives of those that would influence the course of events? It is the only way to find what they truly stand for.
On a rare occasion, every now and then, they slip up and tell you what they really stand for. This is the story of one of those times.
I accepted the challenge to contribute to this paper to afford readers a view and perspective many feel is missing from the periodical.
I recall being told I would have a short career if I were not politically correct. My response was I am not looking for a career. The comments reminded me of the story of the Alamo.
Yes, they lost the battle, but it is okay to lose standing for what you believe in. Did they really lose? They stood, and now Texas stands.
For the most part, I ignore the balsa, balsa sound bites of divisive politics both parties put out. It is noise that calls to uninformed voters and attempts to distract from what is important.
As a confessed conservative I could have said “oh boy” I will put it to them now” and preach to the choir. That is not what the editor wanted, or maybe it was. It sure would stir things up.
Aren’t you just plain tired of all of that? I know I am, and don’t you just tune it out anyway?
Recently people gathered to listen to the reading of our founding documents. It was not a partisan political event. It was open, and everyone was invited.
Most officials chose not to attend; disappointing. I guess the elections are too far off for them to waste their time with the voters right now.
I would be remiss not to note three officials that attended: Patricia Burnette Chastain; clerk of courts, Jeremy Neal; Franklin County Republican Party chairman, and Larry Marciniak; Franklin County Democratic Party chairman. If I missed an official that was there I do apologize.
Marciniak, a politician, and contributor to this paper, rather than participating in the reading chose to seize the opportunity to politicize the event.
I truly do not know how anyone could have missed the sentiment of what was being done, and I do not feel Chairman Marciniak did. He knew exactly what was taking place. The word disingenuous comes to mind.
In any event, I have to say thank you to him for his open honesty in taking a stand against citizens gathered to read the Constitution; brilliant, simply brilliant. It is this type of transparency we need to see what people really stand for.
To support his position he alleges certain parts of documents were selectively omitted because they did not support opposing political views. This is simply not the case.
There was no political wizardry playing out. No master plan of mind manipulation. It was just a gathering of moms and dads; some with their children, grandparents, veterans, and other everyday citizen patriots for the most part demonstrating national pride.
Marciniak may have been the only true politician, a word I do not much care for, at the event. I doubt anyone else gave even a passing thought to party politics that night.
No speeches were given, no campaigning. The documents were read, there were heads bowed in prayer, and a wonderful rendition of the National Anthem was enjoyed by all.
I will quote from the official Franklin County Democratic Party spokesperson’s column, “The fact is these self-proclaimed patriots and defenders of the Constitution don’t like most of what the Amendments numbered higher than 10 have done and choose to ignore them.”
Normally I would simply dismiss this as just more of the same divisive party rhetoric. But come on. Saying the people in attendance in general subscribe to racial discrimination, disapprove of women voting, and a litany of other things. He advanced this based on what?
Quote, “So called patriots.”
There were people there that night that have been in combat in defense of our country. I know of some that lost family and buried friends. Questioning their patriotism, really!
Why would he say such things about people he most probably does not even know?
The problem with “shotgun” statements is one size does not fit all. The truth is a person’s political affiliation does not define them. Some chose party based on family tradition, or for other non-political reasons.
I did not hear one negative word said about anyone. I watched as candles were lit and heard people say maybe events like this will bring people together.
Oh, there were a few friends of mine at the event that happen to be Democrats. I suspect they may now be at risk of being excommunicated from the party. I hope no one holds their patriotism against them.
This is not the story I planned on writing this week. It is the one I had to write.
No room this week to tell you about my chicken dance with Commissioner Dunston. Try to tell you about it next week.
The Franklin County Republican Party’s (GOP) monthly meeting will be held at 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 10, at 101 W. Nash St., Louisburg. Come and register to vote.