Saturday, November 10, 2012

“Would you like to swing on a star?”

The last time we published something with the above title was in April of 2010, when ...

... the House of Representatives passed a resolution by a vote of 223 to 169, which could lead to Puerto Rico rejecting its commonwealth status, and possibly becoming the Nation's fifty-first state.

Closer to the present, this past Tuesday saw Puerto Ricans vote in favor of statehood. If the House approves, they would have to give up fielding their own Olympic team, and join ours as our fifty-first state. This would require a redesign of the American flag, contingencies for which have already been drawn up by the United States Army Institute of Heraldry, which provides heraldic services to the Armed Forces and other government organizations, including the Executive Office of the President. They actually have designs on the drawing board for arrangements of up to fifty-six stars. The illustration on record is a staggered star arrangement of three rows of nine stars, alternating with three rows of eight stars. Personally, I prefer the design proposed by Puerto Rico's New Progressive Party.

When I first heard of the Puerto Rican vote, my first reaction was that a new flag wouldn't be necessary, as I fully expected Texas to be the site of a new secessionist movement. Of all that several States, they seemed most likely to go through with it. But their neighbors to the east may have the jump on them. Here's a petition submitted by residents of Louisiana, on the White House official website:

"When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation."

"...Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, that whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and institute new Government..."

Has a familiar ring to it, doesn't it? They need 25,000 signatures by December 7, at which time to White House promises to get back to them. At this writing, they have 4,295. (They gained roughly a hundred while this piece was being written.)

UPDATE 1: Sure enough, the Lone Star State has followed suit:

The US continues to suffer economic difficulties stemming from the federal government’s neglect to reform domestic and foreign spending. The citizens of the US suffer from blatant abuses of their rights such as the NDAA, the TSA, etc. Given that the state of Texas maintains a balanced budget and is the 15th largest economy in the world, it is practically feasible for Texas to withdraw from the union, and to do so would protect it’s citizens’ standard of living and re-secure their rights and liberties in accordance with the original ideas and beliefs of our founding fathers which are no longer being reflected by the federal government.

As this is written, they are two/thirds of the way to obtaining the necessary 25,000 signatures by December 7.

UPDATE 2: The count of petitions is now up to fifteen states.

UPDATE 3: Nearly twenty states, and some people aren't taking it so well.

And so, the plot thickens.

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