I was writing a reply to a comment in another thread of mine—and the notion of another Civil War worked its way into the response. I considered it an acceptable bit of hyperbole when I wrote it, but it got me to thinking.
The ingredients are there—we have become so politically polarized lately the differences are no longer the stuff of energetic discussion, but rather have taken on the flavor of hatred. We no long have a party in power being contained by a loyal opposition, but instead we have a party trying to govern and a party in bitter, unyielding opposition.
And the Republican primary fiasco is highlighting the regional characteristics of the separation and alienation. We have areas…states…where the messages have to be structured to suit a super reactionary audience that broaches little talk of negotiation or compromise.
I recall a discussion I had with my sister back when the Supreme Court was deciding Bush v. Gore in 2000. Although we both hoped for a Gore victory, we also acknowledged that we had fears about that outcome…worries about how the conservatives would react. Both of us, at some point, suggested it might be better for our side to lose that battle—in a not-completely-facetious concession that doing so might be the only way to insure that the Union remain intact.
I wonder about that now. I don’t think it unrealistic to suppose that if Barack Obama were to be re-elected, there would be lots more talk about secession in places like Alaska, Texas, and South Carolina, to name just a few.
Any thoughts? Is it far-fetched in your opinion?