Letters to the Editor

Letter: States rights?

August 1, 2014


To the editor:

Back in the day, the U.S. Supreme Court under Justice Earl Warren made the decision that separate but equal was unconstitutional. States were going to have to let black children go to public school. The state of Arkansas did not take kindly to that. In September 1957, their governor, man named Faubus, stood at the front door of Central High in Little Rock, puffed out his chest, and proclaimed, “Segregation today, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever.”

Faubus called in the Arkansas National Guard to block the entry of teens who were poised to become the first blacks to attend Central High. Later that month, President Eisenhower dispatched 101st Airborne Division paratroopers to Little Rock and put the Arkansas National Guard under federal command to protect the black students. (http://www.nps.gov/nr/travel/civilrights/ak1.htm)

Under federal protection, the “Little Rock Nine” finished out the school year. Eisenhower was never impeached for his blatant disrespect of states rights in forcing them to accept and obey a federal law they did not like. So now President Barack Obama is not going to be impeached, and states will have to come to terms with the reality that they are all part of the United States and, as such, are first and foremost under federal law.


Philipp Wannemaker 3 years, 9 months ago

Leslie, you failed to point out the major difference between Eisenhower and Obama. Eisenhower was a white, Republican president.

Leslie Swearingen 3 years, 9 months ago

I was rather hoping that people would get that. As part of the Civil Rights movement in the sixties I saw many billboards in the south that said, "Impeach Earl Warren." Some people have long memories.

Scott Burkhart 3 years, 9 months ago

So, Mr. Wannemaker, is that the major difference you see between President Eisenhower and President Obama? Race and party lines? Can you not come up with a cogent argument that rises above name calling? Let's try this: President Eisenhower was white and republican. He believed that separate but equal was wrong. He enforced integration in the face of southern, white democrats. Here's a little more history. It was white republicans that got the civil rights act passed. It wasn't the democrat party but you probably don't want to believe that. Lyndon Johnson used all of his political capital to get it passed. He did not run for reelection because his own party was not going to support him for selling them out. Look it up. As far as further differences between Eisenhower and Obama, they are far to numerous to mention here. Suffice to say, Eisenhower was a leader and, in my opinion, Obama is not.

Mike Ford 3 years, 9 months ago

Here's what all of the amnesiacs chose to omit because their argument would tank in about three seconds amongst educated people. Those southern White Democrats like Orville Faubus, Jesse Helms, Strom Thurmond, and George Wallace bolted and became Dixiecrats after President Harry S. Truman signed Executive Order #9938 into effect integrating the US Military and causing these White openly racist politicians to fume their way out of the Democratic Party. We were happy to see them leave. The Little Rock, Ole Miss, and other federal incursions leading up to the signing of the Civil Rights and Fair Housing Acts of the mid to late 1960's made these angry White men seethe even more. After Alabama Governor George Wallace made his "Segregation now and Segregation forever" speech at Tuscaloosa he went on the campaign trial in the mid to late 1960's even coming north to recruit all of the future Archie Bunkers everywhere. My father protested him as a collegiate Theology student in Kansas City, Missouri in the late 1960's. An attempt was made on Governor Wallace's life and stopped his political campaign but the Richard Nixon Campaign people saw the opportunity with the Southern Strategy of recruiting Southern White Male voters and went with it. LBJ admitted that when the Civil Rights Act was passed in 1964-65 that the Democrats would lose the South for a generation or more. Ironically where is the power base of the GOP now? it's in the South after the GOP recruited disillusioned White former Democrats angry at integration and still carrying anger over the US Civil War a century prior and then tied them with White Southern Evangelicals during the Swaggart/Roberts/Graham era of born again Christians in the late 1970's to start the Reagan revolution. Ronald Reagan made a speech about state's rights at the Neshoba County MS Fair in Philadelphia, MS which codified what I'm saying here. Some of this mentality was in the establishment GOP but it is TOTALLY in the Tea Party people. Here's my background.....I grew up in Jonesville, LA, which was Jimmy Swaggert/Jerry Lee Lewis territory. I grew up in Moss Bluff, LA and witnessed the 1976 presidential election and how it motivated the beginnings of the evangelical movement and I moved to Shreveport and saw the seeds of Reagan before and after the Iran hostage crisis. I have an ex grandfather who was a Dixiecrat and became a Tea Partier right after the first Obama victory in 2008. I know who some of you are politically. I've seen you in my extended ex family in Mississippi. Learn your history. You're not fooling anyone.

Brock Masters 3 years, 9 months ago

This is why we need a good man like Ben Carson to run for and become president. He is one that can lead and unite this country.

Dorothy Hoyt-Reed 3 years, 9 months ago

Nice analogy, Leslie. May I borrow it when I'm arguing with my tea party relatives?

Scott Burkhart 3 years, 9 months ago

Well, Leslie, it's hard to draw a connection between the two when President Eisenhower acted lawfully and within his constitutional rights. The SCOTUS being the final arbiter in that fight. President Obama, by contrast, has seen the SCOTUS strike down 12 of his executive actions by unanimous decision.

Phillip Chappuie 3 years, 9 months ago

Well, Leslie, let me tell you Mr. Burkhart in usual conservative fashion is wrong. The only action the SCOTUS has struck down is when it said the President erred in making appointments when the Senate was not in session. Period.


Brock Masters 3 years, 9 months ago

It is a fact that Obama has acted unconstitutionally (recess appoints - SCOTUS ruled he went against the Constitution with his appointments) That can't be argued. Now has his actions risen to the level of impeachment? Probably not, but there has to be push back against any president to keep them in check - hence the three branches of government.

And it remains to be seen if his executive orders that change law and not implement law are constitutional.

He unilaterally delayed the ACA employer mandate. I do not believe he has the authority to change law. If you support what he did and consider what a Republican president might do. I don't want any president to have the power to disregard or change law. That power belongs to Congress.

Dorothy Hoyt-Reed 3 years, 9 months ago

Well, it was a matter of opinion. If Congress is not holding sessions, and most are not even in DC, that should be considered a recess, even if they don't say it is, but SCOTUS did not agree with me. Frankly I think it is time we start making Congress punch a time clock and have a set number of days when they will be in session. And the Congress person must be present all those times, not some staff person, or their pay is docked. Most of the time they are out running for office, and they actually set the days when they work. Don't you wish you could do that? They are not their own bosses. The American people need to remind them for whom they work, and it's not their biggest contributor.

Brock Masters 3 years, 9 months ago

"The American people need to remind them for whom they work, and it's not their biggest contributor."

Yes I agree and part of this is for the American people to stop fighting with one another. Stop focusing on what we disagree on and try to find common ground.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.