Would secession cure the blue-state blues?
If the presidential election revealed anything, it’s that Ann Coulter’s predictions run circles around Nate Silver’s. It also showed we’re as divided as we’ve been in decades, with blue states getting bluer and red states getting redder.
Is it possible that the states have grown apart like an old, bickering couple trapped in a loveless marriage? If we looked at Kentucky now with fresh eyes, would we really marry it all over again?
With emotions raw after the election, the topic of secession started to bubble up, particularly in deep-blue California, birthplace of the #CalExit hashtag on Twitter. Some Oregonians started agitating to join them.
The lone attempt at secession from the United States left 620,000 people dead, but these are different times. The idea of an amicable divorce has never been tested, so who knows? The thought of never seeing Nancy Pelosi again might appeal to the Republicans who’ll be in charge.
In our latest poll at HeraldNet.com, we asked what you’d think of joining a peaceful secession by the West Coast states, and the peaceful part of that question is key. Have you gone to a red state lately? Those people have guns.
Still, only 35 percent said they’d go for it, and even they might admit the idea doesn’t bear scrutiny. It’s not like the Navy is just going to let us keep the USS Nimitz, so what would we do about defense? Who will help us when sea levels rise several feet? And would we get to keep Russell Wilson?
Then there’s the problem of hearts and minds. When you leave the cities and suburbs, you’ll find even the West Coast isn’t uniformly blue, but a patchwork with plenty of red. There’s a divide between rural and urban America that no quickie divorce is going to solve.
As Americans, we’re all in this together, for better or worse. We might want to think about marriage counseling.
What should Facebook and Google do about the proliferation of fake news stories on their websites?
❏ Let readers decide what’s true
❏ Stop compiling news feeds altogether
❏ Carefully weed out false stories