Landscape organizes everything within sight.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

The Third American Civil War

According to historian Michael Kazin, the Second American Civil War that pitted North against South happened in the 1960's, as civil rights and states' rights went head to head.

But in these days of migrant careers, libertarians are thinking of moving to New Hampshire, liberals to California or Canada, and Evangelicals to South Carolina. Each hopes to make a semi-Mormon pilgrimage to a new holy land where they can live according to their own ideals. Once they get there, they intend to change state law.

It *could* all be paradaisical if we imagine infinitely mobile citizens who can simply strike out and live in the state that suits them best. Then the colonies could indeed look a seventeenth-century map of the colonies -- Puritans here, Catholics there, Spaniards somewhere else, each according to the native teachings of their tradition.

But this is an age when information and belief are still more mobile than individuals. One *could* find oneself, a black man in South Carolina, reading wistfully about civil rights, yet without the financial means to leave your state.

Woe to anyone who isn't mobile who gets left in South Carolina, New Hampshire, or California. Woe in particular to the ethnic minority, the misfit teenager, or the Jew somehow stuck in South Carolina. And woe to America should the other states -- moderate or liberal -- then try to intervene in the name of pluralism, civil society, and civil rights.

Christian Exodus urges relocation to the South : Corvallis Gazette-Times :. Archives


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