Back in 1998, Professor Igor Panarin made a sensational statement: by 2010, the United States would fall apart into several states. He even developed a map showing a hypothetical demarcation between future North American countries. The topic was picked up by various publishers, came to the USA, overgrown with details convincing for the local reader. In the English version, the picture is as follows: the eastern states (New England) form an English-like state entering the EU; the west (California and the surrounding area) will become dependent on China, the southern states will suffer to Mexico and the Spanish language, and the north-central states, the most backward and “dense”, to Canada. Hawaii captures Japan or China, Alaska - Russia.
Such a scenario (let's call it “provocative”, since the word “trolling” in the 1998 year was not yet) by the 2010 year was not realized. But was he completely baseless? After all, the United States has already been divided into two states in the past - the United States and the CSA (Confederate States of America). In the nineteenth century, as a result of the four-year war (a million soldiers died and at least a million civilians), the CSA were defeated, occupied and re-joined the United States. And, interestingly, the reasons for this separation (secession) and the subsequent war are still unclear.
First, the legal moment: the States united into one state in the 1776 year, transferring to the federal government a part of sovereignty, but not all. This is the first. Secondly: not a single document regulated the withdrawal of individual states from the Union. And since it was not regulated, it was not prohibited; and what is not forbidden is what is allowed.
In general, from the point of view of many southerners (modern), the use of the federal army in the states, the occupation, the post-war defeat of the southerners in rights, the appointment of military governors instead of the freely elected population are all crimes, military and criminal. Both Lincoln and General Sherman are war criminals. In terms of the official and "northern", Lincoln saved the nation and the country from criminals. In this, emotional, aspect, the division is still preserved: a northerner, “Yankee,” even a simple truck driver, turned out to be in the South, often had to listen to at least ridicule from the “local”, and even insults.
Goes and Southerners. They (together, by the way, with residents of the central states) are honored with the nickname “rednecks,” that is, “red necks.” Well, what else could be the neck of a farmer? This is despite the fact that the southern states themselves were the real cradle of American statehood and were mastered by quite gentlemen.
It is far from always clear to the Russian reader that slavery was not the cause of the war. And it was not, and here's why. First, slavery was not anti-legal in the early years of the war; secondly, when Lincoln still gave freedom to blacks in the 1863 year - he gave freedom to blacks of the southern states, and blacks of the North received their freedom later. That is, the North has formally been slave-owning longer than the South. But it turned out that in his greeting to Lincoln on his re-election, Karl Marx wrote about that war precisely as a war against slavery, and other versions, naturally, were excluded from our consideration.
In reality, the reasons were most likely economic. Southerners were interested in a liberal economy, that is, in duty-free trade with Europe, where they supplied cotton and from where they bought everything else in return. The North was interested in the development of its industry, and therefore, in the protectionist customs system, with high (20-30%) duties. In this case, the southerners had to pay up to a third of the cost of each purchase to the federal treasury. Who could like it? All economic история The United States in the nineteenth century is the story of "tug-of-war" about tariff rates. Either they rose, they almost got nullified, because in the Congress and the White House they became one and then another.
But what is the reason for such a long confrontation at the emotional and ideological level? It turns out that there is a real confrontation now, and also in the economy. Although it is different.
The political situation of the modern United States is determined by the fact that a wide stratum of voters has emerged in the country, one way or another tied to a “liberal” social policy. In the US, the word "liberal" means not at all what we have: liberals are a kind of socialists. They advocate the further expansion of social guarantees without regard to labor input. This "liberal" policy has mastered the Democratic Party.
A typical supporter is a disabled recipient of benefits, grocery cards and various social services. He often color, lives in large cities, did not serve in the army. He himself, of course, a full-fledged citizen (otherwise he could not vote), but often associated by kinship with illegal immigrants. It is on this layer that the ambitious program of free medical insurance (in fact, the introduction of free universal medicine in the USA) and the whole Obama policy are designed. In passing, liberals stand for the rights of various minorities, for political correctness, juvenile justice, but at the same time for restricting the rights to weapon, bans on hunting and so on.
In foreign policy, however, the differences between the liberals and the conservatives are small.
At the same time, the one whom we consider “a real American”, that is, a farmer in the Midwest or a skilled worker of a high-tech enterprise, feels “humiliated and insulted”. His medical insurance, for which he has been bent all his life, is devalued; Naturally, the average level even of American medicine, when it is “smeared” over all the thin layer, will decrease. And he, the backbone of the whole of America, the simple white guy, authorities say: "Shut up and play, and, yes, it is, to pay taxes, do not forget," And from his tax authority pays for food stamps and medicine for some black man, who I have not worked a day in my life, and he, a white guy, cannot even call that a “Negro”! They, these powerful white old men, publish on their forums photos of muscular Putin with a rifle in their hands - next to their unloved president, kissing a famous American golfer.
This conflict manifests itself geographically. The fact is that the legislation in each state is different, and there are not too many norms established at the federal level. In California, with its millions of Mexicans and immigrants from Asia, with depraved creative intelligentsia, absolutely terrible, in the opinion of Americans, gun laws. Some types of weapons were even confiscated there, which was not accepted at all: for example, if a ban is imposed on something, this type simply ceases to be sold or, rather, imported. And the one who previously bought, continues to own. For example, our SVD rifle is prohibited here and there, but who bought it before, may even sell it on the secondary market, and it is expensive in the US.
Therefore, the United States has formed its own front line - the central states of "deer hunters", ready (albeit in words) with a rifle in their hands to defend their rights against velfer-socialism crawling from the coasts. What is the tragedy of traditionalists? They cannot win the elections, even if the next Democratic candidates fail. The Republican Party has lost credibility, and even ordinary conservatives consider prominent Republicans "rhinos".
The modern world allows people from different countries to communicate without intermediaries, at least in the comments on YouTube, and I try to use these opportunities. It is not easy - and the matter is not only in the language barrier, although Google translator helps. We have different interests with the Americans, a different sense of humor; they, like us, watch American films - but they have different ratings. Nevertheless, all of the above is derived just from them, ordinary Americans, usually older ones. Belykh: for some reason I have not met a single black (or, maybe, did not confess). By the way, it is not uncommon among white people with Indian roots, which I did not expect at all: whose grandmother is Cherokee, whose father is a Comanche. And after many years of acquaintance, I found it possible to lay out for evaluation these cards - the original Panarin and later, humorous.
Americans have a different sense of humor, but a good one, and they like the cards. The second map, where the south and north-center are united, seemed more plausible to them. They also felt that Utah and generally rural areas of the western states, as well as Alaska, would go to the center; but that is absolutely impossible, they said, that something could fall into the hands of Russians or Chinese. This, the Americans said, is the only thing that will unite them all. To this I noted to them that in the conditions of the collapse of the state, losing some territories is easier than ever: an example is the loss of Kosovo by Yugoslavia. With this, they agreed.
In fact, of course, the collapse of the United States is almost impossible. First, after all, the majority of Americans are “statesmen,” and are ready to maintain unity even with the use of nuclear weapons. Secondly, secession is a federal crime in the United States, in contrast to, say, the USSR, where the republics had the right to self-determination up to secession.
But, as some of my pen-pal friends say bitterly, “the country is getting closer to your second map every year”.