The primary force behind modern secessionist talk is political leverage. It sounds good for a Texas governor to threaten to secede. The home boys love it, and it gets the blustering governor more votes. This despite the fact that the last time Texas did so it was quickly conquered and forced back into the Union. But aside from the military risk, Aine has already cited the reason it's a non-starter in real terms. The economics of an independent Texas, or nearly any other Southern state, would be dismal.
Oddly enough, I suspect Florida would have the best economic prospects among southern states as an independent nation. It's gotten so diversified that it's not really a "Southern" state in the cultural sense anymore. Huge numbers of Mid-Atlantic retirees, and just plain wealthy folk, own many homes there, spending quite a lot of money just by living in the communities. And of course paying property taxes. Add the tourism for the beaches, and fishing, and Disneyworld, and what-not for quite a bit more economic activity. And a large population of Carribean and Central American people have also settled there, mostly around Miami, starting all sorts of businesses to sustain themselves. Have you heard "there are no 'white people' in Miami'?" The demographics are so different there that the racial divide typical of American society for centuries has been overwhelmed.
But there is a darker side to the sham secessionism. It's that racial divide again. The whole driving force behind the Civil War was slavery. The South as determined to maintain it. Defeat and occupation left plenty of anger in the long-term southern population. They gained some revenge by sneak in the early decades after the war with movements like the Klan. But eventually that was also suppressed by more Federal intervention, this time by law enforcement rather than regular military. So the more recent pseudo-revival of Confederate spirit, though it's not intended seriously by most of the current generation of political hacks exploiting it, is about resentment of more recent Federal intervention in the south during the Civil Rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s. The phrase "states rights" that you'll hear in the rhetoric of certain Republican shysters is code for the right to practice systemic racism. The problem with 'poses' is that they get stronger with time. They shift from acting to genuine belief. Even people who don't understand the sham and know the real motive behind the rhetoric can get sucked in by sheer repetition. That's what is happening now with all the posturing about anything communal, especially if it's Federal, being government over-reach and some sort of outrage.
We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be.
-- Kurt Vonnegut, Jr., Introduction to the paperback edition of Mother Night (1966)
There is and always has been a hidden core of very angry people in the South who retained their desire for independence. They were just overwhelmed and forced into silence by the military power of the North. But they could be communicated with by code words, and would vote for people who seemed to share they anger and resentment. The more modern politicians play these games with dog-whistle politics for short-term political advantages, the more widely the attitudes of the formerly 'hidden' group get spread in the general political culture. Not just of the South, unfortunately, but of the whole country. A new Secession movement might not be a realistic possibility now, because too many white people would suffer economic losses. But as this keeps up, generation upon generation, the critical mass will be attained at some point. Especially if the economic benefits of being within the larger USA shrink, which they probably will. Sooner or later enough of the population will be in a state of continual outrage at that awful Federal government (that pays for most of their education, health care, and infrastructure) to really try to secede. What happens then is difficult to predict...
Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03-Jun-20 20:35 by Nolondil.
|Carving up America||170||Glass Jigsaw||03-Jun-20 15:22|
|Re: Carving up America||68||Aine||03-Jun-20 15:25|
|Re: Carving up America||54||Archaic||04-Jun-20 11:42|
|Re: Carving up America||37||Aine||04-Jun-20 12:29|
|Re: Carving up America||36||WhoWeird||04-Jun-20 14:12|
|Re: Carving up America||70||Eddie Larry||04-Jun-20 15:20|
|Re: Carving up America||62||WhoWeird||03-Jun-20 15:25|
|Re: Carving up America||68||drrayeye||03-Jun-20 17:34|
|Re: Carving up America||52||Aine||03-Jun-20 17:50|
|Re: Carving up America||49||WhoWeird||03-Jun-20 18:38|
|Re: Carving up America||52||Glass Jigsaw||04-Jun-20 00:26|
|Re: Carving up America||48||Audrey||04-Jun-20 01:03|
|Re: Carving up America||46||WhoWeird||04-Jun-20 01:20|
|Re: Carving up America||48||drrayeye||04-Jun-20 04:15|
|Re: Carving up America||46||Aine||04-Jun-20 12:31|
|Re: Carving up America||68||Nolondil||03-Jun-20 19:57|
|Re: Carving up America||49||Glass Jigsaw||04-Jun-20 13:39|
|Re: Carving up America||44||Audrey||03-Jun-20 21:04|