Why Secession In America Won't Happen Anytime Soon

A discussion with a law professor and two New England "secessionists."

A lone star captured on the grounds of the Texas State Capital in Austin, Tex.
Flickr Creative Commons, Phil Roeder
Why Secession In America Won't Happen Anytime Soon
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Why Secession In America Won't Happen Anytime Soon

The recent stirrings in Texas have prompted us to do a show about secession, but it's important to note that, at any given moment, there are low level secessionist rumblings in many U.S. States.

You may remember that in 2008, one of the many interesting aspects of Sarah Palin was her husband's status as a former member of the Alaska Independence Party. Vermont has a separatist movement, and there's something involving Washington State, Oregon, and British Columbia -- the Cascadia Independence Movement.

Here in Connecticut, we had some serious talk of secession at the Hartford Convention in 1814, and in the 1970s some seriously unserious secessionist activities by a South Glastonbury group calling itself Nayaug, the 51st State, whose activities I covered extensively for the Hartford Courant.

You can join the conversation. Leave your comments below, e-mail colin@wnpr.org or Tweet us @wnprcolin.



E-mail from Bill

Haven't heard mention of it yet, but Dean Kamen once tried to create a "Kingdom" on his island in Fishers Island sound (North Dumpling Island). I think he worked it out with the US without bloodshed back in the 80's, but I wonder if the desire to secede lingers. When I sail by the island, I sometimes feel like the guns of the North Dumplinger navy are trained on me!

E-mail from Edward

I love your show! You always manage to find interesting topics to explore.

I just want to follow up on the caller who stated that the Federal Government 'goaded' the CSA into firing the first shot. It should be mentioned that the states of the CSA sought to acquire Federal military installations within its borders through peaceful purchase of the land and facilities, but the Union government refused to sell. I suppose that might be considered some passive-aggressive form of goading, but one should consider a moment Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The United States continues to hold a military base in a hostile country against the wishes of that government. We continue to 'lease' this land, but have never had any intention of abandoning it at any price. Havana could choose to take it by force, but is there any doubt what would follow? And perhaps most importantly, does anyone who advocates for secession think that the U.S. should surrender or sell Guantanamo Bay or stand down if it is attacked?

E-mail from Bryan

From a purely "Texas Libertarian" point of view, we as a country cant afford to keep Texas. For every two dollars that Texans send to Washington they get three dollars back. If a Texan falls off his bike FEMA is called out.

Once, they are gone. Sorry no foriegn aid to Texas either...

E-mail from Karl

Where was all this seccession talk a decade ago? I mean, if it's a good idea now, it was a good idea then, just after 9/11, when the USA was "pulling together" and whatnot.

E-mail from Anonymous

Can we load Texas up with our entire debt ($16 Trillion) and spin them off (let them go). And then after they go bankrupt take them back?