Since the failed coup by insurrectionists on 06 January 2022 there has been lots of concern over the actions of a few…..and of course that made me think about history….there was a time when the president was in fear of a popular insurrection against the government of the nearly formed American government…..and he did something about the rise of insurrection…..
There has been some recent talk in Congress about changing the Insurrection Act of 1807. This act empowers the president to send federal troops to quash “any insurrection, domestic violence, unlawful combination, or conspiracy.”
Although altering the law has been caught up in the politics surrounding the end of the Trump administration, when the administration considered invoking it several times in 2020, the statute has always been dangerous, is outdated and unneeded, and should be either completely repealed or amended to restrict severely presidential actions.
In 1807, President Thomas Jefferson signed the congressional legislation when rumors abounded that the scurrilous Aaron Burr, his former vice president, was raising a personal army. During American history, it has since been used to send active U.S. military forces to both support and impair civil rights and quell a riot. In the latest case, President George H.W. Bush used federal forces to quell the 1992 Los Angeles riots in the wake of the acquittal of four policemen in the beating of Rodney King.
Yet one of the major fears of the nation’s founders—which continued well into the 20th century but has now been forgotten—was the dread that a standing military would impair Americans’ liberty. Because of the anxiety in American society about the depredations of the British military on civil liberties before the American Revolution, George Washington, the first president, had trouble getting Congress to give him enough forces to fight Native Americans on the frontier.
Only after two major defeats at the hands of the Indians did Congress even marginally increase the U.S. Army. And this skepticism of a standing military lasted through the 19th century and well into the 20th century. It was American tradition that when a war was over, most of the U.S. military demobilized—even after the sizeable conflicts in the Civil War, World War I and World War II.
If you are interested there is more background on this attempt by Jefferson…..
This is the law that Trump was considering to use to try and stop the count of the electorate ballots…..lawful exercise of government.
This law needs a major overhaul…..but that is for another day because there is too much plaguing the nation for this to be a concern.
I Read, I Write, You Know
“lego ergo scribo”