Since the reelection of Barack Obama, the talk of secession has received a lot of attention. I would venture to say this is due to the White House’s insistence on allowing on-line petitions for everyone to see — thereby creating fervor where none might have existed before.
Some are sympathetic. Most are condemning such talk. I believe Romans 13 is a good guide, while others will no doubt point to 1 Kings 12 (as flawed as that argument may be).
But because the talks come after the reelection of a blue president, the vehemence of the movement comes from the right, and the vehemence of the attacks comes from the left. Naturally.
However, while the victorious left are throwing the “raaaaaacist” word around, and the unionist right are saying, “CALM DOWN!” we’ve forgotten something:
Leftists have had secessionist movements, as well.
Vermont has been trying since the Bush Administration to create the “Second Vermont Republic,” which believes “Globalization is antithetical to our humanity.”
Californians had its own online petition going immediately after the reelection of George W. Bush (not facilitated by the White House), and has organizations still today that bandy about the idea of independence from a leftist approach.
Hawaii has had secession movements for years — though theirs is rooted more in geography and history rather than simple frustration with government. The Free Hawaii movement even advocates returning to the 1840 constitution of Hawaii, which gives more power to king-appointed tax officers than it does to the representative legislature.
In 2006, the Cascadian Independence Project was reborn, encompassing parts of Oregon and Washington, which advocates a non-hierarchical government that would ironically ensure, among other things, social justice and a right to privacy.
On November 7, 2004, the Middlebury Declaration was issued, and in 2005 the Middlebury Institute was founded, which is an active think tank dedicated to the ideas of secession. Technically, it’s fine with any form of secession, but it prefers states to secede into genuine democracy, and was formed in response to George W. Bush’s policies.
So before people start telling the government to deport all these modern rainbow chasers, just remember that secession is not an idea limited to red states.
If people insist on condemning these new petitioners, then at least be consistent and apply that condemnation to all who would leave the union.
I’m going to stay as far away from this argument as I can. But I can tell you, as a serious student of the secession of 1776, Independence then was a last resort.