Remonstrance and Petition for a Redress of Grievances
Just War and Defense
We, the Delegates of the Southern States, in Congress assembled, make the following Findings and Affirmations:
The Southern States and People of the nascent United States played a pivotal role in the War of Independence. Without their contribution and sacrifice, America’s freedom from England could not have been won. Thereafter, Southerners have faithfully served in every conflict, representing a disproportionate share of the enlisted ranks and officer corps of the U.S. Armed Services, and sadly, of the killed and wounded as well.
Although subjected to unjustified aggression in the War Between the States and cruel exploitation thereafter, the Southern People, at the urging of their former Confederate leaders, embraced the obligations of citizenship and have proven to be among the most loyal and patriotic Americans
Southerners have won a reputation for courage, valor, and martial prowess in all the country’s conflicts. We have rallied to the colors whenever called with an intensity of devotion that has been an example to the rest of the country and cannot be doubted.
Regrettably, since the beginning of the twentieth century and most recently the so-called Global War on Terror, the United States Government has embarked on a path of imperialism and military adventurism that has not brought us greater security but has actually made us less secure. This policy of aggressive war abuses the willingness of Southerners—indeed, of all Americans—to risk our lives in defense of the country. Moreover, these endless wars are as staggering in their costs as they are tragically unnecessary, with an enormous human price in dead, maimed, and displaced; and in untold billions of dollars, contributing to the current economic crisis that threatens the very foundations of our society.
Article I, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution grants the exclusive power to declare war to the U.S. Congress. But the President and Executive Branch have usurped this power and levied aggressive war without just cause and through deceiving the People as to the threats, necessity, and costs of these conflicts. The Congress has failed in its Constitutional responsibility to check an imperial Executive, while improperly authorizing the use of force and appropriating funds for an unconstitutional, undeclared war.
The right of the People to petition the Government for a redress of grievances is recognized by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
Therefore, we, the Delegates to the First Southern National Congress, remonstrate against unnecessary war and the use of armed force to establish American hegemony across the globe and petition the Government of the United States to:
- Refrain from the use of deception and fear to institute aggressive, unjustified, and undeclared military actions.
- Restore the sovereign authority of the States and the People and obey the Constitution by levying war only with a proper declaration of war issued by the U.S. Congress.
- Observe moral law and the long-established law of nations regarding just war, under which conflict is exercised with a just cause, right intention, probability of success, proportionality, and respect for the immunity of non-combatants.
Adopted 6 December 2008 by the First Southern National Congress at Hendersonville, North Carolina and ordered to be transmitted to the Delegations to the United States Congress of Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia; to the President of the United States, and to the State Governments of these Southern States.
If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.
What is liberty without wisdom and without virtue?