Bob Steinburg. Civil Liberties, and a pickle.


State senator Bob Steinburg is famous for popping off at the mouth.  Many times,  his mouth works faster than his brain does. Once, he publicly declared “war” on a district attorney and judicial system within his district.



Now, he’s calling for the enactment of The Insurrection Act of 1807 and the suspension of some constitutionally-protected rights and some civil liberties:


North Carolina state Sen. Bob Steinburg knew he’d get a lot of blowback after suggesting that President Donald Trump could suspend civil liberties to protest an election they both believe was stolen.


And that was fine with him.


“All the liberals are just going nuts today,” he said Wednesday. “Somebody has got to stand up and risk being ridiculed, laughed at and scorned, And right now that’s me.”

Steinburg’s comments, first reported Tuesday night by WRAL, found a national audience Wednesday in the Washington Post.


On Facebook, the Republican from northeast Chowan County posted comments from controversial retired Gen. Thomas McInerney, who said that Trump should suspend civil liberties and invoke the 1807 Insurrection Act, which would allow the president to deploy the military to quell domestic disorder.


Steinburg said while he was simply posting the general’s comments, he might also support curtailing civil liberties. He compared it to North Carolina’s restrictions to stem the spread of COVID-19.


“If there were reasons to do it then civil liberties would be suspended for a short period of time,” he told the Observer.“But our civil liberties in North Carolina have been abridged since March. If Donald Trump invoked this executive order, if he thought there was foreign intervention, then, yes, I support it.” […]

Government does do anything for a “short period of time.”   Social security was initially implemented as a temporary measure to help folks get through The Great Depression.   We’re still paying taxes that were initiated to pay for the installation of phone service in the Tennessee Valley.


You surrender on a few things and you end up giving away a lot more.  Give an inch and government takes a mile.



I didn’t know much about the 1807 Act before seeing Steinburg’s comments, but found this helpful tidbit.


The Act has been implemented 23 times since 1808.  Most of the implementations were in the 50s and 60s and were initiated by presidents Eisenhower, Kennedy and Johnson to deal with violence associated with The Civil Rights struggle.  George H.W. Bush was the most recent president to do it —  choosing to make his moves in response to the LA riots and to disorder in The Virgin Islands following Hurricane Hugo.


If ANYBODY is taking this idea seriously,  there needs to be some long, hard thought before doing it.  Dictators like Hitler in Germany and multiple leaders in the old Soviet Union took similar steps to consolidate their power.  People who really care about freedom and liberty need to be very concerned about a move like this made in a manner like which Steinburg is advocating.