TODAY'S RANT: Before You Say It Can’t Happen Here, It’s Already Happened Here.By Philip Drucker, Constitutional Law Professor
Staff Writer, Los Angeles Free Press
On February 19, 1942 President Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed Executive Order (EO) 9066 authorizing the Secretary of War to prescribe military areas. Under the guise of protection against espionage and sabotage during wartime, FDR utilized his inherent Article II emergency powers as later defined in Section 4, Act of April 20, 1918, 40 Stat. 533, as amended by the Act of November 30, 1940, 54 Stat. 1220, to regulate the “conduct and control of alien enemies,” “Including the use of Federal troops and other Federal Agencies” in tandem with state and local agencies and officials.
This EO allowed for the evacuation, relocation, detainment, choose your pretty words wisely of over 110,000 Japanese Americans in protective custody camps, reception centers, transit camps, anything but concentration camps, in various locations around the United States.
Does this sound unconstitutional to you? It’s not. How do I know this? Because whether a law or EO is “constitutional” or “unconstitutional” is a matter of judicial review by the US Supreme Court. Essentially, granting the SCOTUS, and not the POTUS (or the Congress) the right to perform constitutional hocus pocus, as in now it’s constitutional, now it’s not. In the case of Korematsu v. United States, the SCOTUS ruled the actions authorized under EO 9066, regardless of the actual citizenship (meaning racial profiling on steroids) were, under the emergency circumstances generated by war, fine and dandy, sugar candy. And the internment went on, to end after three years of enforcement, well into 1945. The takeaway is that FDR was acting pursuant to the Constitution and the directives of Congress, as approved by the United States Supreme Court.
Modern warfare is a scary thing. It got a lot scarier after WWII. Welcome to the Cold War, the Red Menace and mutually-assured nuclear destruction. A world where the concept of survival, survivor and surviving took on a new, different, deadly meaning. As part of his Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb strategy, JFK (there it is!) contemplating a world of eternal nuclear winter for the survivors, if there were any, enacted EO 11004.
This EO allowed the government to seize all housing and finance authorities, and in an innocent-on-its-surface Section 3(a) Population movement, allows for the government to participate “…in the development and coordination of plans for the movement of people on a temporary basis from areas to be abandoned to areas where housing is available or can be made available.”
All in conjunction with the Department of Defense. Like I said earlier, choose your words carefully. Don’t want to get caught dead-handed and defend “relocate” “displace” or “trail of tears.” Why not just call it “summer camp for free” and call it a day? Or, is it bedtime for Donzo?
Before the Trumpanzee declares some fake emergency or another tangentially tied-to cats fighting with dogs using Marquis of Queensbury rules, breeding of red (bull) cows, and the end of days, or sells nuclear secrets to the Saudis, we must remember who we are. We are the sons and the daughters of the conquerors, not the conquered.
In America, we play hardball and it is our turn to topple a monarch. The Founding Fathers didn’t win an election, they started and won a revolutionary war. We must aim high and demand our elected officials do the same. We must seek not only to remove a craven, conniving coward before he causes more suffering but to seek true patriotic American justice and restore the rule of law.
There is only one way left to prove that no one, not even the President is above the law. Nancy, if you’re listening, impeach him later, but for now, find him in contempt, use the inherent enforcement powers of Congress, and well, lock – him – up. (Felt good, didn’t it?) And, he can keep Bill Barr company. Si se puede? Yes, she can.