Dan Gelernter is a columnist for American Greatness. He lives in Connecticut.
My elementary and high school teachers never did a good job of explaining American federalism. When I was in school, it was hard to see any major difference in government from one state to another, except perhaps in the prevailing tax rates.
But now it’s obvious: New York wants me to show health papers to go to a restaurant. Oregon is moving to make its indoor mask-mandate permanent. In Florida, meanwhile, there are no masks and essentially no COVID.
"Federalism is now a grand stage for leftist hysteria to play itself out against American freedom."
American freedom is winning: People are leaving California and New York and moving to Texas and Florida in record numbers. The federal government was not, of course, intended to be what it has become: the daily manager of every citizen’s life. In 250 years, the federal government has grown up from a whelp to a monster. Ironically, with this assertion of new federal superpowers, federalism, too, is reasserting itself.
As Americans continue to frustrate the attempts of government to contain them, to restrain them, and above all to take their money, the federal government will become ever more aggressive in attempting to enforce a uniform—and uniformly leftist—way of life. There are few state governors who have the courage to stand up to the federal government. We need more governors like Florida’s Ron DeSantis.
And for those who are urging DeSantis to run for the presidency in 2024: Hold your horses. A good governor is going to be just as important in 2024 as a good president, and these people don’t grow on trees. In fact, there is not another governor in the country who can hold a candle to DeSantis in those matters of personal freedom fundamental to American life. Read More