Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The United States of Angry People who Protest by Petitioning to Secede

Social media allows radicals to talk amongst themselves and inflate their message and numbers artificially.  If one judged importance by mere number of websites or comments on a web forum then one could easily believe that Old Catholics, Continuing Anglicans, and Ron Paul are very serious forces in the world.  However, they have little impact because people forget that fringes tend to be organized but overall numbers pale in comparison to silent majorities.

Such is the case with the petitions by upset conservatives claiming a desire to leave the United States because of the reelection of President Barack Obama.  In reality these petitioners represent a very small number of actual citizens (Texas' petition has been signed by the equivalent of 0.3% of Texas' overall population).  Overall this is mostly people venting their anger at Obama's win and not a true desire to leave the union.  These petitions' existence are a non-story, much like the supposed desire of some in Vermont to reestablish the Republic of Vermont during the presidency of George W Bush.

A late night browsing of petitions revealed 41 states have petitions pertaining to leaving the union.  The petition for Alaska merely asks for the right to vote on whether or not to leave the union, and Alaska is the only state with a quasi-serious independence party which actually won a statewide election.  The states without a petition are the swing state of Iowa and the majority Democrat Party states of Hawaii, Washington, Iowa, Maryland, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, and Maine.

It is not so much Red State v. Blue State but you can find angry people who will copy a press-driven protest almost anywhere.  Map created from 270towin.com
In semi-serious statehood news Puerto Ricans voted in a non-binding referendum for statehood compared to the traditional winner of status quo commonwealth and the never popular independence option.  However, caveat this with the long stated desire of Puerto Ricans for statehood which is always matched by the their knowing they could never afford to be a state.  The little reported news out of Puerto Rico was that at the same time of the referendum pro-statehood Governor Luis Fortuño lost reelection to pro-commonwealth/anti-statehood Alejandro García Padilla.  Granted the election was very close and local issues did play a role, but none the less Puerto Rico voted for the status quo in reality while giving them a playful statehood pat-on-the-back.

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