Political Individualists Are Holding the Country Together

Not everyone has chosen a side.


It was shortly after Donald Trump took office that the father of one of my son's taekwondo classmates approached me in our small, reliably Republican Arizona town to chat about the new White House resident.

"I'm actually a Democrat," he whispered conspiratorially. "I don't talk much about that here."

Soon thereafter, another friend confided that the leftier-than-thou neighbors in her Chicago suburb also had her watching what she said.

"I'm surrounded by liberals and progressives until I drive a few miles west or south," she told me.

Both feel besieged but were comfortable turning to me because I don't share in our age's deep tribal divisions along political and cultural lines. The two leading factions of American politics can't stop fighting each other. But if anybody can keep the peace, it may be those of us who can't abide joining either camp.

"There are stark differences between Democrats and Republicans," political scientists Marc Hetherington and Jonathan Weiler of the University of North Carolina write in their book, Prius or Pickup? "What they like to eat, what shows they want to watch, where they choose to live" are all at odds, because worldview, culture, and lifestyle have come to align in recent years with partisan affiliation. Republicans and Democrats no longer just vote differently—they live differently, see the world differently, and emphasize different values.

And that means when Americans move to rural towns like mine—which offer houses on more property and access to the outdoors—they also tend to surround themselves with people who share their Republican politics. When they move to my friend's suburb, they find themselves among fellow Democrats who share their taste for ethnic food and walkable neighborhoods. Increasingly, the two groups don't even run into each other, since their varying job choices and divergent leisure activities help to keep them separated.

Many people even seek out businesses and professionals based on partisan affiliation. In 2018, market research firm Branded Research reported that 61 percent of surveyed mental health therapy patients insisted that it is "very" or "somewhat" important that their therapist share their political views.

That immersion in samethink reinforces itself. "When cultural tastes in turn have a reciprocal effect on personal networks, such divisions are likely to be even further exaggerated, leading to a starkly divided world of latte-sipping liberals and bird-hunting conservatives," Daniel DellaPosta, Yongren Shi, and Michael Macy of Cornell University wrote in "Why Do Liberals Drink Lattes?" a paper published in 2015 in the American Journal of Sociology.

This sorting process is not scary in and of itself, except that we live in a country where government touches everything. This is why people who live very differently and have opposing political affiliations are fighting tooth and nail to control the levers of power. With the stakes so high, the alignment of lifestyle and partisan affiliation "has increased the emotional intensity of politics to the point that rival partisans not only have difficulty comprehending each other—they actually hate each other," Hetherington and Weiler write.

Pollsters say the proportions of Republicans and Democrats expressing not just opposition to but explicit hatred for adherents of the opposing partisan cult have more than doubled over the past two decades, to roughly half of each.

But not all of us have chosen a side. Some of us dislike them both but are perfectly willing and able to cross the boundaries of culture, lifestyle, and partisanship to socialize and do business. That's how I came to be a confidant to a fellow taekwondo dad as well as my friend in the Windy City. Each saw in me the fellowship that tribal adherents don't look for across partisan lines. They might not agree with me, or I with them, but we're not enemies.

Maybe there are lucrative opportunities in that ability to cross lines, or maybe we individualists will just accidentally find ourselves serving as social glue. It will be the ultimate irony if the only people bridging divides and holding the country together in the years to come are those of us too ornery to join our countrymen in their mutual loathing.

NEXT: Brickbat: Goodbye Mother, Goodbye Father

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  1. This can be considered to be true upto a point, some people would still disagree to the fact that a political alliance can completely make or destroy countries.

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    1. Say for example the German Russian non-aggression pact?

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    3. "Both sides!"

    4. Both feel besieged but were comfortable turning to me because I don't share in our age's deep tribal divisions along political and cultural lines. The two leading factions of American politics can't stop fighting each other. But if anybody can keep the peace, it may be those of us who can't abide joining either camp.

      Lefties are not talking much because they know that their positions are not what America wants. Trump's election is proof of that.

      Conservatives have felt like the political underdogs for decades, so it tends to be beneficial to remain silent about one's political views.

  2. It is certainly an odd position to be in?sitting outside the current divisions and watching ordinary folks go at it with zero self-awareness and none of the shame they ought to feel for supporting authoritarian despots of either stripe.

    It's almost like being back in school and watching physically disabled kids trying to bully mentally challenged ones.

    1. So... popcorn? 😀

    2. I'd say it's more like watching Nixon get into a fist fight with Mao... Sure Nixon was kind of a piece of shit, but he's worlds better than Mao.

      30 years ago I can see how those with libertarian leanings could have been equally sympathetic to both parties for different reasons... I just don't see it anymore. The Rs are the 1 eyed king in the land of the blind at this point. Even their bad things from a libertarian perspective (anti drugs, etc) are mostly decent things morally, at least they're not pushing for sick/fucked up stuff like the left does.

      1. Being anti-drug is morally decent?
        You might trying selling that shit at the Federalist, veek.

        1. Exactly how many people think banging heroin is a good idea??? Oh, basically nobody. Most Rs don't give many fucks about somebody who smokes a joint now and again anymore, it's not 1967 ya know. Same with a lot of other stuff. Many bad behaviors aren't the WORST things in the world, like murdering children after raping them, but they're not GOOD either. The government just needs to stay out of it.

          But between full on socialism, AND SJW morals forced by law on everybody (which are even worse than Bible thumper morals IMO), I'll take typical R opinions over the commies. As would any sensible libertarian leaning person.

      2. "Sure Nixon was kind of a piece of shit, but he's worlds better than Mao."


    3. Who said we're outside the divs.? They're reproduced on a smaller scale by radical libertarians, who seem to treat almost all of humanity as authoritarian despots. The process Tooch Jr. describes is ongoing in our midst.

  3. But if anybody can keep the peace, it may be those of us who can't abide joining either camp.

    Thanks, J.D.! Best laugh I've had today!

    1. Ya, I've noted in a world of black and white, greys tend to be savaged by both sides, and often with even more ferocity. A true believer is one thing, but apostasy is unforgivable.

      By why stop there? Why is this divide strictly between left and right? Libertarians are just as likely to indulge in clannish tribalism, driving the impure from their ranks.

      Ever hear a libertarian comment that some government function might be better than the private counter-part?

      Me neither.

      1. Ever hear a libertarian comment that some government function might be better than the private counter-part?

        I'm pretty sure most libertarians believe that, at least, courts and military defense are things government should do.

        1. And those same libertarians are generally at a loss to explain why those functions should be exclusive to the government as opposed to things like environmentalism or healthcare, or why private arbitration and a mercenary army couldn't supplant a large share of government function.

          Even less likely is libertarians able to point to private enterprise rendering some government function moot.

          1. Are we not reading Nozick anymore?

            1. Which Nozick? The night-watchman state Nozick or the distributive justice Nozick?

              Strange that both can be derived from the same principles, but libertarian ubermen never seem to get around to championing the latter.

        2. Police, prosecution, and courts have zero business being handled by government, at least exclusively, and that while an offensive military does indeed require a government and coerced taxation, a defensive military requires only well-armed militias to make invasion and occupation a daunting prospect. Fishery protection against interlopers and shipping protection against pirates are easily handled by self-protection. Protection against, say, U-boats is only necessary for countries which insist on government monopoly on taking sides in other countries' wars. If individual merchant shippers want to take sides, and their crews want to go along with that risk, then they can do whatever they want to mitigate such risks.

          1. I'm talking about what libertarians believe, not An-Caps.

            And while I'm sympathetic to the An-Cap position, I'm kind of a philosophical anarchist, it's just not going to happen.

    2. I don't know. I think it is kind of the best hope. Most people, even among the minority who votes regularly, aren't really all that thoughtful about politics. The real divisions are among the relatively small group that puts a lot of energy into politics.
      Neither side in the binary politics is going to win. Best hope is that most people get sick of the bullshit and decide that politics shouldn't be such a big force in their lives.

      1. Best hope is that most people get sick of the bullshit and decide that politics shouldn't be such a big force in their lives.

        We're doomed.

      2. I dunno man... I'm thinking we're heading more towards one side or the other taking far more authority and forcing the other side to comply. If we don't have a civil war in the next couple decades I will be VERY surprised honestly. We have all the signs that typically lead up to such events in spades. All it would take even right now is a trigger event to set it off IMO. Give it 10 years and the trigger event could be less severe to kick things off as everybody will be that much more angry.

        I hope I'm wrong... But I don't think I am. Personally, I'm in favor of peacefully splitting the country up. It is the adult thing to do. A peaceful separation beats a violent divorce.

        1. Split it up like Korea. The socialists can go fuck off in their own worker's paradise and leave the rest of us alone.

          1. EXCEPT -- Socialists (just as California has/is doing) NEVER leave the rest of us alone. Which is on clear display by their lack of recognition of their OWN state sovereignty and compulsively continues to push FEDERAL into state/personal issues.

            Socialists are all about infecting and claiming territorial gains as far back as the USSR, Stalin, Hitler; heck you name it. Just as California citizens have been pushing to conquer the rest of the U.S. through socialism and asylum citizens have already infected other surrounding states.

            Just as it is with Mexico's border; You'd have to have deterrent means to keep the socialists out. As PragerU once put it, "Socialism Takes what Capitalism Makes". The whole party is about TAKING!

            1. Socialists try to take local issues national and force their policies on everyone else only because we neanderthals don't know what's good for us. They are doing us a favor.

              1. LOL!! So well said... I cannot even count how many times I've heard exactly that from leftist siblings while calling Trump an Authoritarian in the same breath.

            2. This is a problem... They feel that they MUST impose their views on everybody, because they're right, and everybody else is wrong. But if it's looking like they're "losing" so to speak, we may well be able to offer them a chunk of the country to fuck off too. I'm a fan of carving off all of the west coast, save a small sliver in the north or south for a single major west coast port.

              It could work, and everybody would be happier afterwards... All it takes is for people to realize we have irreconcilable differences... So it's either that, or most likely a civil war.

              1. "offer them a chunk of the country to fuck off too" - already done. 50-Chunks to choose from. But its still the same problem as it is with Mexico/US. Once they destroy one of their chunks they migrate to another... and another... and another...

                They obviously aren't after full sovereignty because they compulsively dismiss their own sovereignty in order to conquer all others.

                In other words; they cannot survive and will collapse and seek refuge every time while still compulsively holding on to the same beliefs. As it is exactly so with so many Socialist/Communist fallen countries like Germany, USSR, Venezuala, etc.. etc..

                The profession of Criminal Minds is to find the next Victim.

                1. And that's why after a brief period where people can choose which chunk of the USA to live in, YOU CONTROL YOUR IMMIGRATION!

                  Personally, I wouldn't be opposed to having a political litmus test to move to the USA. People who think you can just let people move around willy nilly are fools. In a system where people vote, controlling who you let into your country and their cultural and political views is probably the single most important thing you can do.

                  This is why I've always said that it's funny that the only way you could have a libertarian country is by ignoring a few major libertarian ideas. Open borders cannot maintain a libertarian society... But one with strict control on immigration, and no universal voting rights could.

      3. Neither side in the binary politics is going to win. Best hope is that most people get sick of the bullshit and decide that politics shouldn't be such a big force in their lives.

        Not sure I agree. Yeah - the binary politics as it exists is a lose-lose situation that keeps people fruitlessly engaged by pretending that a)lesser evil is the only thing one can expect or b)simply being on the winning side is sufficient 'win' to ignore that it remains a lose-lose situation. But the reality is that people DO win in lose-lose situations - and those are the people who set the rules of the game.

        Getting sick of the bullshit doesn't actually change the importance of decisions made politically. And it doesn't even begin to address the winners who are pulling the strings and refereeing the game. What's needed in my opinion is a better mousetrap - a better game. That can offer a better process or a better outcome - maybe even a win - to everyone currently in the lose-lose game that's contemplating 'getting sick of the bullshit'.

      4. The country can't be split like Korea. The split is between Urban and the rest, Look at any election map. You would have to build Berlin walls around most cities. Even places like Salt Lake City and Dallas and Houston. If Chicago was isolated Illinois wouldn't be in the financial mess it's in.

        1. The state pension mess is bigger than the city one, even on a per capita basis, and Downstate and suburban towns and cities have their own pension messes that are as bad as Chicago's on a per capita basis. It was a co-production of both major parties, but especially Jim Edgar (Republican governor), Richard M. Daley (Democratic Chicago Mayor), and Pate Philip (Republican State Senate President). They sharply increased contracted employee benefits, then failed to make the extra contributions for 13 years (1997-2010) thinking the stock market growth would do it for them. Big mistake anywhere, where that's just not how you invest, but especially in Illinois, where pension contracts for government workers are written into the state constitution, as the conservative Republican chief justice, Lloyd Karmeier, pointed out in his opinion for the state supreme court.

        2. WHATS wrong with FOLLOWING the Constitution and having 50-Soveriegn STATES! The lack of state/city/county sovereignty is really the driving force between National division. The more thinks are Nationally Decided the more Controversial it becomes.

        3. But it doesn't matter. Cities everywhere may be one way, but what people REALLY want is a place that does all the things they want.

          Carve off the west coast, and progs from all over would move there by the millions knowing it will be more socialist like they want, and conservatives and libertarians will bail from there by the millions knowing the rest of the country will go the direction they want.

          We really only need to shift national politics by several million people to re-align the political center quite a bit towards the right/libertarian side of the spectrum. California ALONE would do this, but tossing in Oregon and Washington would definitely get it done.

          The Dems left in the rest of the USA would almost immediately have to tack back to sane 1970s conservative Democrat positions to get elected after all the self sorting of people took place.

  4. The ultimate irony is that these two "sides" don't really disagree much. The differences are mostly cultural and image-oriented.

    1. The current labels of liberal / conservative do not describe the differences very well. The true divide is between those who support individual freedom, and those who support government control of the individual.

      And that is as big a disagreement as you can get.

      1. The thing is, both sides support government control of the individual. They just have some differences on what aspects should be controlled...

        1. Its totalitarian vs authoritarian.
          Both bad, one definitely worse

            1. As usual, mcgoo, you don't have a thing to say.
              You're a fucking useless lump

              1. Still better than the useless drivel you peddle. What kind of dumbfuck think thinks tyranny from the right is better than tyranny from the left? It all sucks and kills millions. One is not worse.

        2. Different Aspects:
          1. Government control over Personal Justice through Individual Rights
          2. Government control over Social Justice through Theft, Excuses and a Democratic "mob" voting approach.

      2. This.

    2. we need a great epic poem about the day Tweedledum killed Tweedledee

    3. True dat. Hardly anyone in the US supports smaller government for themselves. They surely don't trust big government for people different from themselves.

      1. On a Regional basis; the assertion that, "Hardly anyone supports smaller government" doesn't hold water.

        Rural areas most definitely support smaller governments. Urban residents need to realize; That is why the USA has City/County Majors, Councilmen, Sheriffs (so every pet-peeve about your massive neighbors can be addressed locally!).

        Demographics and the various situations they present can all be addressed specifically by State.

        THE ONLY reason the Union of States was even created (Federal) was for a strong national defense. It included BASIC human rights so State's couldn't lobby to kill off part of their population. If urban people can refrain from driving their local issues into the national government it would solve A-LOT of problems in this Nation! First and foremost the national division happening.

        Besides -- Your local (vocal) representation at a local level is FAR more effective than nationally. Not having enough representation power is what launched the Revolution in the first place (Tax w/o enough or any Representation). SO PLEASE; USE THE RIGHT TOOL (Gov Level) FOR THE JOB/COMPLAINT at hand.

  5. Maybe there are lucrative opportunities in that ability to cross lines,

    Does this mean being libertarian will increase your chances of getting laid?

  6. But if anybody can keep the peace, it may be those of us who can't abide joining either camp.

    I like how Tuccille's article doesn't even attempt to provide any evidence to support his wild assertion.

    1. Perhaps he just meant keeping the peace in our daily interactions with either tribe.

    2. Maybe he's just telling us his opinion/speculation based on personal experience. Not everything needs to be treated like a scientific fact.

      1. In my personal experience, the Earth is flat and the Moon is about the same size as the Sun. Why let evidence get in the way of proposing that on an ostensibly professional web site?

  7. What's especially great is you can't talk about libertarianism anywhere.

    1. Not even in this comment section!

      1. Well - Liberals destroyed the real meaning of liberty and Republicans usurped most of the libertarian foundation when they loosened their religious morality grip on most subjects short of illegal-drugs and abortion controls.

        Also shown in polls like this where 52% of Republicans support Roe v Wade.

        I guess you could say Non-Party wise that 52% of Republicans are Libertarians.

  8. The core problem is as identified -- as government intrudes into personal life more and more, it becomes harder and harder to mind your own business, because if that's all you do, someone else will soon convince the government to mind it for you. It becomes more and more useful and even necessary to go on the offensive and start using government as your weapon against others before they start using government as their weapon against you.

    That's the real travesty of big government. People who could otherwise agree to disagree and get on with their respective lives, now have less and less choice in agreeing to disagree.

    1. Except that government forces are very good at removing personal freedoms, but very ineffective at forcing people to be free.

      1. "Except" my ass! That's part and parcel of the whole shebang.

    2. My friend here was just recounting a story of someone he knew like that who got into an ordinance war w neighbors?how the property should be kept?& then had them turn it back onto her.

  9. Cue the Trump-humpers to start calling everyone who agrees with this article lefty progs. Seems they're not out of bed yet.

    1. Don't want to be labeled a progressive?
      Don't act like a progressive.

      0/1 today

        1. Why would anyone trust someone with the handle "Mcgoo95" with how things look?

  10. I find it can be a lot easier to start with "Honestly, I was in favor of gay marriage before Obama or Hillary would admit it publicly, but..." when discussing certain things. Showing there is some common ground helps.

    That said, progs are mostly just beyond saving at this point. At least the line towing ones. I live in super lefty land, and I keep stumbling across more and more lifelong Democrats who unprovoked tell me how the Dems have gone insane. So I think there are a lot of sane center-left folks that might come around...

    But the True Believer sorts, there's no saving them. Frankly why SHOULD I get along with a lunatic?

    Somebody who believes all the insane drivel that a "proper" progressive does now is basically nuts. They have to literally discount half of the real world that lays in front of their eyes to believe a bunch of that nonsense. Somebody whose brain is that dysfunctional I have no reason to be polite with, humor their nonsense, or anything else. They simply need to be marginalized and mocked out of society as the idiots they are.

    Tolerating insane/stupid opinions is HOW we got here. Everytime they threw out some new nonsense, sane people just shrugged and sighed, and were polite about it... Until that crazy thing became unquestionable. Then it was on to an ever crazier thing. It's time to say NO MORE to the children.

      1. towing the lion

      2. And that's important because when you say "towing the line", you are using a metaphor but have no idea what that metaphor is.

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  13. "But if anybody can keep the peace, it may be those of us who can't abide joining either camp."

    I don't think your examples demonstrate that. You were talking to fellow outsiders (who nevertheless may not be outsiders in other contexts) not the comfortable vocal majority. Try seeing the camp joiners as real people just trying to navigate their own social lives, not red and blue stereotypes

  14. ""There are stark differences between Democrats and Republicans,"

    Some differences sure, but I think they are derived from cultural movements that go way back before the existence of America's political parties. The Roundheads and the Cavaliers. Opposite sides of the civil war in England 300 odd years ago. (I think the battle of Naseby was in 1645. I have relatives who claim our ancestors watched the battle from the hawking tower of their estate.) The Roundheads, lead by Oliver Cromwell, England's Mao Ze Dong, abolished Christmas, the theatre, genocided the Irish etc. The Cavaliers hated parliament and the commoners, and were loyalists to the crown and their privileges. They fought each other in a vicious civil war. The differences were a lot starker than those exhibited by the parties today.

  15. If there's anyone out there who is sufficiently interested in this sort of thing, if you copy the title of an academic paper, and then add 'pdf,' you'll sometimes be able to download it to read. Like this:

    "Why Do Liberals Drink Lattes pdf"

    In this case, it worked. I'll be reading it later, just for the title. You can also download 'Unpaywall' for free to search the Internet for freely available papers, even if you find sites charging you for them.

  16. Who the fuck shares their political views with a fucking therapist?

    1. Given the fact that someone with different political views can pathologize what you consider perfectly normal behavior, I'd be interested.

      Are you a gun owner? Might not want your therapist to be a lefty gun grabber. He could put out a red flag risk protectiin order on you and next thing you know there's a SWAT team at your door.

      Are you trans? Might not want a right-wing therapist who thinks transgenderism isn't a real thing.

      1. You mean recognizes severe body dysmorphia as a mental illness?

    2. Actually a pretty good test of the quality of the therapist, gauge their reaction.

  17. This is why it bothers me when libertarians (among others) express our preferences in moral terms. When your opponents become your enemies & become evil, that's a problem. As RAW wrote, "Convictions make convicts."

    1. re: "our preferences"
      My preference is that I and my children not be forced to become slaves to the collective. But, of course, the people who want to make us slaves are not evil. No moral convictions are involved. Just a marginal preference. Either way, no biggie.

      1. You've already chosen slavery for yourself and your children. People like you lose all claim to respect the first time they pay anybody rent.

        1. Good Grief; Freely negotiated Mutual agreements and contracts are NOT even vaguely related to the term 'slavery'. Oh and BTW - Feminism is Sexist, the Butt-hole IS NOT a human sex organ and Socialism isn't about 'empathy' it criminal theft.

          1. "Feminism is Sexist, the Butt-hole IS NOT a human sex organ and Socialism isn't about 'empathy' it criminal theft."

            You forgot being black is racist. Otherwise good parroting here.

            1. You've still got it wrong.... Saying, "being black is racist" IS a racist statement since it universally encapsulates based entirely and only on the subject of ones skin color.

              Just as Feminism is Sexist because it universally encapsulates based entirely and only on the inalienable subject of ones particular sex.

              What you're looking for here is - Black Lives Matter (BLM) is a racist organization for the same reasons stated above; encapsulating based entirely and only on the inalienable subject of race.

              Where's the "equal rights" and "lives matter" movements?!?!?! Oh yeah - they've existed since before 1866 but I guess it just wasn't good enough so there had to be movements for JUST females and JUST black people.

              Funny how the Civil Rights act was passed to eliminate the JUST white people movements.

              See the Civil Rights Act of 1866 .... *WITHOUT REGARD* to race, color, or previous condition

              1. Is the NFL and NHL sexist? There are only men players. I don't remember seeing anyone here condemn these sexist organizations.

                1. Still doing it --- You haven't dismissed the REGARD to the inalienable factor of sex. *WITHOUT REGARD*!! And just to add another topping - Every individual has every personal right to be sexist or racist; Its only a Legal issue when it revolves around "Legal" (LAW) lobbying or becomes the basis of criminal activity.

                  So what if many Democrats were still racist after the end of slavery - Them personally commenting about a persons race isn't a crime (Freedom of Speech). When they started committing criminal acts or deny vote or any other UN-Just legal/illegal action based upon - that's where it becomes an issue.

                  1. Point n Case: Laws that dictated blacks personal expression and/or dismissed their individual rights is what was SLAVERY was. Laws that dictate white (or any inalienable factors) personal expression and/or dismissed their individual rights is the THE EXACT SAME THING only with a different TARGET.

                    This ideological defect runs rampant on the left. Stated before the lefts stance is still all about SLAVERY -- "those people" (WHICH PEOPLE?) should pay for our self-proclaimed right to a house, medical, food and education. Exact same SLAVERY approach; just a different TARGET.

  18. Considering that the term RINO is heard far more than DINO --

    Its pretty easy to see the majority of Bigoted Team Cheer-leading ( Rivalries, Winning and Competitive Power Plays ) is stronger in one side than the other......

    Perhaps the divide is really D-Team cheerleader or NOT a D-Team cheerleader situation. The R-Team is and never has been as united on policy as the D-Team. I'd like to think that recent unity of the R-Team in congress is just reactionary and that most R-Team affiliates can still peg the VERY FEW good policies of the left.

  19. Another good one, J. D. Thanks!

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  23. This article makes it sound like the two sides (reps and dems) are both about trying to force the other to do things the way the winner wants. That's not the case. Generally the reps just want gvt to leave EVERYONE the hell alone. The dems, OTOH, want gvt to tell everyone how to live right down to what kind of toilet to buy, whether straws are acceptable, and how big a soda pop you are allowed to buy.

    So NO, this is not simply about each side trying to win to get their dictator installed to dictate a boatload of rules one must follow. The reps don't want a dictator, they don't want a king, they don't want endless directives from DC about how their schools must be run, what kind of car they are allowed to buy, and all the rest of the soul crushing regulation the dems are so in love with. The Dems want all that and more, there seems to be no end to the amount of regulations the dems want to enact into law.

    The reps are for freedom generally speaking and the dems are for a dictatorship.

    1. +1000; Perfectly put and clarified so well!

  24. A free country where people with different interests left each other alone would be the good solution, but there is no evidence that is likely now. A return to federalism, where more things would be left to state and local governments is not a good solution, but it beats a civil war, even a cold one. Besides a person could always move.

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