Did I know him to be an occasionally fierce critic of American domestic and foreign policy? [29], Congressional scholar and Brookings Institution senior fellow Thomas Mann[59] argued that Obama gave "an extraordinary speech—not because of any rhetorical flourishes, but because it was honest, frank, measured in tone, inclusive and hopeful." It's that he spoke as if our society was static; as if no progress has been made; as if this country—a country that has made it possible for one of his own members to run for the highest office in the land and build a coalition of white and black; Latino and Asian, rich and poor, young and old—is still irrevocably bound to a tragic past.[2]. Ch 14 North and South . [40] Sometimes, the Supreme Court has even analogized the States to being foreign countries to each other to explain the American system of State sovereignty. In earlier documents, including the 1778 Treaty of Alliance with France, the Articles of Confederation, and the 1783 Treaty of Paris recognizing American independence, the word "people" was not used, and the phrase the United States was followed immediately by a listing of the states, from north to south. "[29], Donald F. Kettl of the University of Pennsylvania called the speech "stirring" and noted that, "rather than put race behind him, [Obama] put it more at the center of the campaign." According to the Times, "Universities were moving to incorporate the issues Mr. Obama raised into classroom discussions and course work, and churches were trying to find ways to do the same in sermons and Bible studies. Substantively, the case was about whether the transaction in question constituted "interstate commerce" that Congress could regulate pursuant to the Commerce Clause. Video of the speech "went viral", reaching over 1.3 million views on YouTube within a day of the speech's delivery. They weren't simply a religious leader's effort to speak out against perceived injustice. Obama framed his response in terms of the broader issue of race in the United States. [7][8] Wright had said, among other things, "God damn America" for its racism and "for killing innocent people. [43] As a result, although the federal government is (as discussed above) recognized as sovereign and has supreme power over those matters within its control, the American constitutional system also recognizes the concept of "State sovereignty," where certain matters are susceptible to government regulation, but only at the State and not the federal level. "[16], Obama later said that as he wrote the speech, he tried to ensure that his mother, Ann Dunham, would have trusted its sentiments. Ch 7 A More Perfect Union. Did I ever hear him make remarks that could be considered controversial while I sat in church? Co. v. Sys. The Preamble was placed in the Constitution during the last days of the Constitutional Convention by the Committee on Style, which wrote its final draft, with Gouverneur Morris leading the effort. “A More Perfect Union” is the slogan of a speech by then-senator Barack Obama. You certainly have to do that, if not explicitly, then implicitly by getting up and moving. Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons/Gage Skidmore. After being sent to prison in the State of Washington, he filed a writ of habeas corpus with the local federal court, claiming he had been unconstitutionally put on trial without a jury. '"[22], On the other hand, courts will not interpret the Preamble to give the government powers that are not articulated elsewhere in the Constitution. Edge of Evil by J. Speaking before an audience at the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Obama was responding to a spike in the attention paid to controversial remarks made by Jeremiah Wright, his former pastor and, until shortly before the speech, a participant in his campaign. [44] For example, although the federal government prosecutes crimes against the United States (such as treason, or interference with the postal system), the general administration of criminal justice is reserved to the States. While generally agreeing that the speech was quite significant, there was debate about what effect it would have on the campaign. "[28], Jesse Jackson—who, prior to Obama's campaign, had come closer than any other African American to winning a major party's presidential nomination—said that the Obama campaign had been on the verge of being derailed by racial fear stemming from Wright's comments and previous remarks by Clinton supporter Geraldine Ferraro that Obama would not have come so far had he been white. + 3 also donated . [68], A CBS News poll taken two nights after the speech showed that 69 percent of registered voters who heard about or read about the speech felt that Obama "did a good job addressing race relations." Obama then invoked the history of racial inequality in the United States, first by paraphrasing a line by William Faulkner: "The past isn't dead and buried. And you have to just say, I probably would too." [36] The federal government exercises its supreme power not as a unitary entity, but instead via the three coordinate branches of the government (legislative, executive, and judicial),[37] each of which has its own prescribed powers and limitations under the Constitution. $5.00 $10.00 $20.00 $50.00. Donate to Us Support More Perfect Union by making a donation. [77], To know what has come before is to be armed against despair. "[33], The political strategist and former executive director of the Christian Coalition of America Ralph Reed argued that Obama should have gone much further in his condemnation of Wright. Rather, he inspired us by reminding us of the awesome potential residing in our own responsibility. United States v. Kinnebrew Motor Co.[23] is an example of this. Of course. But the remarks that have caused this recent firestorm weren't simply controversial. May 25, 1787, freshly spread dirt covered the cobblestone street in front of the Pennsylvania State House, protecting the men inside from the sound of passing carriages and carts. For some, nagging questions remain. ", "Hardball with Chris Matthews Transcript - March 19th 2008", "Independent Women's Forum - Michelle D. Bernard", "Obama's racial problems transcend Wright", "In a gamble, Obama takes aim at America's 'racial stalemate, "It will take more than one great speech for Obama to reassure some Democrats", "What should Obama do about Rev. Similarly, Eric Plutzer of Penn State argued that Obama's speech "did not put the Rev. "[28] While each state was originally recognized as sovereign unto itself, the Supreme Court held that the "United States of America" consists of only one sovereign nation with respect to foreign affairs and international relations; the individual states may not conduct foreign relations. 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