Ron Paul: Marijuana Legalization and Secession

November 20, 2012

Is all the recent talk of secession mere sour grapes over the election, or perhaps something deeper?   Currently there are active petitions in support of secession for all 50 states, with Texas taking the lead in number of signatures.  Texas has well over the number of signatures needed to generate a response from the administration, and while I wouldn’t hold my breath on Texas actually seceding, I believe these petitions raise a lot of worthwhile questions about the nature of our union.

Is it treasonous to want to secede from the United States?  Many think the question of secession was settled by our Civil War.  On the contrary; the principles of self-governance and voluntary association are at the core of our founding.  Clearly Thomas Jefferson believed secession was proper, albeit as a last resort. Writing to William Giles in 1825, he concluded that states:

“should separate from our companions only when the sole alternatives left, are the dissolution of our Union with them, or submission to a government without limitation of powers.”

Keep in mind that the first and third paragraphs of the Declaration of Independence expressly contemplate the dissolution of a political union when the underlying government becomes tyrannical. 

Do we have a “government without limitation of powers” yet?  The Federal government kept the Union together through violence and force in the Civil War, but did might really make right?

Secession is a deeply American principle.  This country was born through secession.  Some felt it was treasonous to secede from England, but those “traitors” became our country’s greatest patriots.

There is nothing treasonous or unpatriotic about wanting a federal government that is more responsive to the people it represents.  That is what our Revolutionary War was all about and today our own federal government is vastly overstepping its constitutional bounds with no signs of reform.  In fact, the recent election only further entrenched the status quo.  If the possibility of secession is completely off the table there is nothing to stop the federal government from continuing to encroach on our liberties and no recourse for those who are sick and tired of it.

Consider the ballot measures that passed in Colorado and Washington state regarding marijuana laws.  The people in those states have clearly indicated that they are ready to try something different where drug policy is concerned, yet they will still face a tremendous threat from the federal government.  In California, the Feds have been arresting peaceful medical marijuana users and raiding dispensaries that state and local governments have sanctioned. This shouldn’t happen in a free country.

It remains to be seen what will happen in states that are refusing to comply with the deeply unpopular mandates of Obamacare by not setting up healthcare exchanges.  It appears the Federal government will not respect those decisions either.

In a free country, governments derive their power from the consent of the governed. When the people have very clearly withdrawn their consent for a law, the discussion should be over.  If the Feds refuse to accept that and continue to run roughshod over the people, at what point do we acknowledge that that is not freedom anymore?  At what point should the people dissolve the political bands which have connected them with an increasingly tyrannical and oppressive federal government?  And if people or states are not free to leave the United States as a last resort, can they really think of themselves as free?

If a people cannot secede from an oppressive government, they cannot truly be considered free.

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  • even worded and on point as always. Bless this man for not giving up on us

  • We are losing a good man to old age,,perhaps a war on death would have more luck than a war on drugs/users/abusers.

    Thanks Ron Paul for all you have done attempting to end this insanity.

  • Thinking Clearly

    I only hope that we can find someone who can have even half the sense that this man has about most things. Good common sense does not have to retire with Ron Paul. This article about says it all. This is the type of Government I learned about when I was in school, not what we try to pass off as Government today. Say it loud Dr Paul!

  • william mckeeman

    THANK YOU Ron Paul for telling it like it is. I hope we get to hear from you in the next election. for its time for a change in the way the government is run, and i know you can do it.

  • Ron Paul is not the last of a dying breed. In fact, he has started a revolution of free thinkers and citizen dissatisfied with the tyrannical attitudes of our elected leaders.

    I think secession might be the only way to convince the federal government that We the People are serious about states’ rights. Far too long has D.C. ignored the will of the People on issues like health care and marijuana legalization.

    Off to sign my state’s petition…

  • MeekOfKauai

    Yes Mr. Paul, the government we know now would cause the very founders of our great nation to roll over in their graves! It is certainly time for people to stop accepting that in this country we were not meant to have to choose between A and B, we were meant to be FREE thinking and FREE acting, allowing room for great advancement through creative innovation. We have all been put in a box, and if we do not realize it, we simply think that box is the world we live in. The states are the real battle grounds in this war on the people by our own government. The Federal Government only continues to keep its power of influence as long as they have a majority of states refusing to challenge them. I assure everyone that if we can just get 25 States to stand up and start fighting Obama Care and the Drug War, these two crippling issues will lose their power and influence, and cease to exist. We should also return to personal responsibility on every level, including removing the “Blame Vaccum” created by Corporations (The Name Itself) being considered a “person” that can accept responsibility for its actions. This allows big money to have undue influence over our political system through branded donations that create an elite social class of millionaires out of public servants. These are things that we the people still have the power to change on a state and local level, and they will certainly send our real message to the good old boys out there spending away our future. Get with the program, or get out of the way, we have a Country to save!


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