What Would Happen If Martial Law Is Declared?

January 7, 2016, by Ken Jorgustin

martial-law-in-the-united-states

Martial law may be used by government to enforce their rule over the public. You may be interested to discover the answers of the following several questions that come to mind…

1. Under what circumstances might the government declare martial law?

2. What would happen if Martial Law is declared?

Let’s have a look…


 

When might the government declare Martial Law?

Martial Law might be declared…

…in a time triggered by events when the civilian government has broken down
…in a time when civilian authorities have lost control of order and security
…during extensive riots or when disobedience of the law becomes widespread
…to stabilize insurrections or perceived insurrections
…when the government is threatened
…in a time of war (e.g. foreign invasion)
…in a time of war (e.g. civil war)
…a coup d’état

In strict dictionary terms, martial law is the suspension of civil authority and the imposition of military authority. The military authority will act as the police, as the courts, as the legislature. The commander of the military is the President. It has been argued that the President can take it upon himself to declare martial law.

In the United States, there is precedent for martial law. The most obvious and often-cited example was when President Lincoln declared martial law during the Civil War. He suspended habeas corpus throughout the entire United States.

 

What Would Happen Under Martial Law?

U.S. Constitution would be suspended
Suspension of habeas corpus
Suspension of civil rights
Suspension of civil law
No freedom of the press
No freedom of assembly
No freedom of speech
Curfews enforced on the people
Troops in the streets for enforcement
Checkpoints would be set up for control
Ability to hold a person without charge
Potential arrest of anyone who is a ‘suspect’
Imprisonment without representation or due process
Potential house to house confiscation of firearms, ammunition, food supplies

In summary, the ‘Commander in Chief’ is enabled to impose martial law and military control in the United States. During a time of martial law, you will lose all of your rights. While it may be a shock (losing one’s rights under the Constitution), you will in essence be ‘naked’ and vulnerable to the actions of whomever is ‘in charge’.

 
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Could Martial Law happen again in the United States?

Yes, of course it could.

The question is… what might trigger it, and would it be ‘local’, regional or nation-wide?

Additionally, one might wonder… if Martial Law is ever declared on a wide scale, would ‘the military’ (or militarized police, or DHS, or a modern equivalent of the ‘brown shirts’) fully enforce the actionable demands and enforcement of Martial Law from the Commander in Chief?

I suppose that depends on the ‘trigger’ and where people may stand on that…