Politics & Prejudices
The future of the fairgrounds
Well-connected developers eye old state fair site
Published: January 23, 2013
That’s an ancient idea called nullification, which was famously asserted by the South Carolina racist firebrand John C. Calhoun in the 1830s. (President Andrew Jackson squashed him like a bug.) Later, the idea that states could ignore federal laws led to secession, and the Civil War.
Just in case anybody forgot how that turned out, the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and Explosives (ATF) has been sending letters warning such idiots that federal law always trumps state law, something kids are supposed to learn in high school civics, if not before.
This, however, seems lost on the bill’s main sponsor, state Sen. Phil Pavlov (R-St. Clair Township). He told a reporter that “we’re under a constant threat by the federal government to infringe on our Second Amendment rights.”
Pavlov, who doesn’t seem to be quite as smart as the hungry dogs his namesake used to train to salivate when they heard a bell, may not grasp that the Second Amendment is part of the federal, not state, Constitution.
Incidentally, the most the feds are talking about is possibly banning rapid-fire weapons that have no conceivable purpose other than the mass murder of human beings.
The odds are, in fact, that this group of nullifiers doesn’t really hope to pass this bill; they just want to pander to the gun crazies and maybe get campaign money from them.
But it is clear what the founder of their party, one Abraham Lincoln, thought of men who believed they could pass state laws allowing them to ignore federal ones.
He called them traitors.
> Email Jack Lessenberry