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The latest attack on COS is simply bizarre

Published in Blog on May 21, 2024 by Jakob Fay

“Prism” writer Kieryn Darkwater—a self-described transmasculine and nonbinary artist—claims to have discovered “the Christian nationalist playbook to usurp democracy.” Within it, he says, the Convention of States movement has revealed its plans to forcibly implement theocracy—“circumventing the American democratic institution and forcing their will through bureaucracy.”

Citing the Convention of States group (along with The Heritage Foundation and Alliance Defending Freedom) as a leading force in this radical, far-right movement, Darkwater woefully misrepresents and disregards basic facts about the grassroots effort to call an Article V convention.

Noting that COS supporters believe that “the only way to save America is by bringing the government back in line with the ‘original intent’ of the framers of the Constitution,” he recasts the undertaking as a racist bid to “silence BIPOC [black, indigenous, and other people of color] voters.”

“In a state-led convention,” he says, “it’s much easier to control which amendments pass because it will be almost impossible for non-white, disabled, and low-income people to vote in local and state elections.”

This argument is laughably unfounded. First of all, what specific evidence does the author cite to support the claim that it’s “almost impossible for non-white, disabled, and low-income people to vote in local and state elections”? Secondly, even if this claim were somehow accurate, why is it relevant to a state-led convention? What Convention of States critics often seem willfully to ignore is that any constitutional amendment, whether it originates from Congress or a state-led convention, must receive three-fourths ratification from the states; hence, the purported issue of marginalized communities facing barriers to voting would affect both amendment processes equally. Furthermore, such a situation would have adverse effects on all our elections. Therefore, this problem—if it even exists—is an election issue, having nothing to do, at least not inherently, with Convention of States.

Unfortunately, it only gets worse.

“Amending the Constitution by bypassing the federal Congress is the least democratic option possible,” the article continues, “which is why this method was never previously used—and it’s also why Christian nationalists are eagerly embracing the option to obtain power.”

Once again, the author relies on baseless and misleading claims to make his point. Indeed, contrary to his assertion, the convention method appears to be the most democratic option for amending the Constitution, as it both begins and ends with the people. According to data from the National Conference of State Legislatures, the United States boasts a robust contingent of over 7,000 state legislators, roughly two-thirds of whom must initiate an Article V convention. Then, at the convention, proposed amendments must garner the consent of a majority of states before they return to the state legislatures for additional ratification. By the time an amendment receives final ratification, it enjoys the support of potentially thousands of elected representatives, all of whom are closer to their constituents than members of Congress.

But Darkwater, rather than contend with these facts, instead stokes fear-based conspiracies about the anti-democratic Christian nationalists who seek to seize power.

“Christian nationalists are banking on the fact that we don’t take them seriously,” he added. “We often don’t—and it’s been to our own detriment. Now is the time to start paying attention because there is still time to foil their plans.”

While Darkwater contributes nothing new to the faulty argument against the Article V convention process, his bold pronouncement that the grassroots are endeavoring to impose theocracy is particularly striking. Moreover, he exposes the strange bedfellows behind the opposition to COS.

While most nationally known conservative groups and speakers support the Article V movement, a few fringe far-right groups continue to frustrate our progress by promoting the same debunked talking points that Darkwater employs. Tellingly, The John Birch Society has aligned itself ideologically with the radical Left—and together, whether they realize it or not, they are fighting to preserve the corrupt status quo in Washington.

Convention of States is a grassroots movement for everyone—anyone who believes that “politics as usual” is hopelessly inadequate to tackle the crises that face our nation. Far from seeking to centralize power, we aim to return constitutional authority to the states and people. Our opponents, from George Soros to Hillary Clinton and Kieryn Darkwater, would leave those crises—a crushing national debt, flagrant government oversight, and rampant federal corruption—unaddressed.

So, if you’ve had enough of the lies, fear-mongering, and hopelessness, sign the Convention of States below and embrace the Founders’ cure for federal tyranny. Learn more about the project here.

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