The Southern League, which was founded in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, in June 1994, seeks to advance the social, cultural, economic, and political wellbeing and independence of the Southern people. According to Southern League President Michael Hill, the South, though it has been subsumed by the American Empire, remains a distinct historical entity: “The South has its own culture based on particular folkways, heroes, music, cuisine, dialect, religion, ethnicity, and political philosophy; since 1860 the South has been the last bastion of Western Christian civilization.” To league officials, that is why the region has come under heavy attack by the forces of statism. It stands as the last remaining barrier to the triumph of a godless New World Order that seeks to destroy all such cultural anachronisms. As long as there is a true South—and not a New South or Sun Belt—there will be men and women who demand to be left alone to live their lives as they see fit, answerable only to God and legitimate government.

Until now, efforts to save the South have been either all head and no body or vice-versa. Southern intellectuals like the Nashville Agrarians of the 1930’s had sound ideas but had no means of acting on them. On the other hand, mass populist movements have come and gone because they lacked leadership. Unlike these previous efforts, the Southern League combines some of the country’s most original thinkers with a large number of battle-scarred activists. Since its inception last summer, the league has swelled from a mere handful of founders to a mass organization with members from New Hampshire to California.

Critics of the Southern League often dismiss the organization’s goals, asking, “Wasn’t Southern independence discredited by the failure of 1860-65?” Michael Hill says that “The issue of secession’s legality has never been publicly entertained, especially since the Supreme Court’s decision in Texas v. White (1867) that the nation was, had been, and always would be an indissoluble union of states. But anyone with knowledge of the state conventions that debated constitutional ratification in the late 1780’s will see the tyranny inherent in such an assertion by the judiciary.” Secession, as Jefferson understood, is the ultimate right of a free people.

The League’s Confederate ancestors were bucking the trend of political centralization and nationalism in the mid-19th century. While they attempted to dissolve the American political union, Italy, Germany, and Japan created nation-states, and Great Britain and France, among others, sought worldwide empires. Although many Northeastern intellectuals have confidently proclaimed the death of regionalism and nationalism and the rise of the “international community,” the time may be right for Southern revival. The Southern League believes that it is the newest agent of a trend toward political devolution that has already swept away the Soviet Union, its satellite empire in Eastern Europe, and Yugoslavia; fueled a violent battle in long-subjugated Chechnya; and is now threatening to split apart Italy, Great Britain, Canada, and Brazil.

Unless it returns to constitutional government, the United States cannot maintain its present territorial integrity except by quelling independent-minded citizens through terrorist violence. The absence of a historical “American” culture has made possible various sectional (not to mention racial and ethnic) cultures that have prevented the formation of a “nation” in the true sense of the word. As the nation declined, the government expanded its powers. Those who opposed such expansion on constitutional grounds found that a tyrannical court had used the 14th Amendment to destroy such safeguards as the Second, Fourth, and Tenth Amendments. This empire, like Yugoslavia, was never really legitimate and is certain to fall apart, either by a peaceful devolution toward constitutional liberty or by a process of ethnic rebellions and refined revolts. In the meantime, says Hill, Southerners should remember who they are and defend their cultural and religious symbols from political vandalism.