The United States of America needs to become disunited

The United States of America needs to become disunited

A quick survey of today’s headlines reveals a disquieting trend. In Seattle, a group of area businessmen obtained more than enough signatures on a petition to repeal the city’s newly enacted $15-an-hour minimum wage. The Democrat-controlled city council has vowed to fight back. Further down the coast, in San Diego, a planeload of newly arrived illegal immigrants was greeted by hostile protesters whose battle cry — Enough! — was eclipsed partly by the profane and anti-Christian taunts of counter-protesters.

Wherever you go, it’s pretty much the same thing. Climate change zealots clash with climate change deniers. The pro-life movement butts head with the pro-choice movement. Name a topic — any topic — and there is likely to be a bitter divide, a yawning socio-ideological chasm separating left from right. What’s a country to do?

In his keynote address at the 2004 Democratic National Convention, then-Sen. Barack Obama famously (and fancifully, as it turns out) observed:

[T]here is not a liberal America and a conservative America — there is the United States of America. There is not a black America and a white America and Latino America and Asian America; there’s the United States of America.

Less well-remembered are the words Obama used to introduce this quotable quote:

Yet even as we speak, there are those who are preparing to divide us, the spin masters, the negative ad peddlers who embrace the politics of anything goes.

One would have to be deep in denial not to acknowledge that Obama as president has turned out to be everything he decried in that sentence. If he is reviled by conservatives, it is self-inflicted damage, occasioned by what one of his supporters misguidedly calls his “use of comedy to taunt and undermine his political foes” (aka sarcasm).

But Obama is not to blame, at least entirely, for the deep rift in the country today. He is not clever enough for that. In any case, the divisions have been there, festering, for quite some time. Under Obama, they have merely been cast in sharper and more vivid relief than previously.

The left and right today are suffering from what divorce attorneys term “irreconcilable differences.” What I propose as a solution is a legal separation. I don’t mean a civil war, which is winner-take-all (or -most). I mean an equitable parting of the ways, where the “transformative” nation Obama promised can become a reality for those who share his dream, while conservatives can live in the “traditional” nation they envision. Liberals will erroneously interpret that to mean “all white,” but who cares? As long as they have their own little paradise to inhabit, their antipathy toward those on the right is of little consequence — provided (big if) they stay on their side of the fence.

Naturally, this would require dividing up “common property,” which is no small matter in a country as vast or bounteous as the U.S. My vote would be to saddle the left with all the debt Obama has introduced, but that, like much else, is open to negotiation, including the question of who gets which states.

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Howard Portnoy

Howard Portnoy

Howard Portnoy has written for The Blaze, HotAir, NewsBusters, Weasel Zippers, Conservative Firing Line, RedCounty, and New York’s Daily News. He has one published novel, Hot Rain, (G. P. Putnam’s Sons), and has been a guest on Radio Vice Online with Jim Vicevich, The Alana Burke Show, Smart Life with Dr. Gina, and The George Espenlaub Show.


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