“Resolved, That the Libertarian National Committee: Calls upon the State Legislatures to enact legislation to prohibit the States’ National Guard and any member thereof to be released from the state into active duty combat unless the U.S. Congress has declared war pursuant to Article I, § 8, Clause 15 of the U.S. Constitution”
Over Memorial Day weekend at the first meeting of the newly elected Libertarian Party National Committee, the Board unanimously adopted a resolution in support of Defend the Guard. The resolution, authored by renowned anti-war activist and delegate from Texas Scott Horton, is an important step forward for both the Libertarian Party and the anti-war movement as a whole. The Defend the Guard Act is taking the peace movement to the front lines.
In the spirit of Ron Paul, the Act combines the American anti-interventionist tradition with constitutional arguments against illegal military action, and just like Ron Paul, it has tremendous support from active duty military and veterans. Defend the Guard currently has an active effort in 31 states and has been brought to the floor of several legislatures, almost passing in West Virginia with bipartisan support, but is spreading fast across the nation.
While many states will require action from the legislature, California elections allow for any voter to submit a qualified ballot measure and San Diego Libertarian Party Chair Loren Springer is driving the effort to have an amendment to the California Constitution in front of voters in 2024. California has a longstanding culture of antiwar activism that seems to have peaked during Vietnam, with small spikes of activity during Desert Storm and into the Global War on Terror, but has been unable to achieve any victories through protests alone.
This amendment will change all of that. If the cliche “so goes California” holds true, then we could see a real impact in rolling back the military-industrial complex. Now with full support of the national Libertarian Party, the Veterans Caucus, and state and local affiliates across the country, Defend the Guard is on its way to the national conversation and beyond, marking the end of the ineffectual era of the party and providing a space for cooperation between constitutionalists, hippies, and average Americans while leading this important conversation.
The Party of Peace is now the Party of Action.