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How nations are born

Cascadia’s importance as tensions rise

Matthew Choicej, Volunteer Writer

Niccolo Machiavelli, one of the greatest political philosophers ever, considered nation-states to be similar to living organisms. Like living things, nation-states are born (often violently), and they experience growing pains as they battle against external and internal threats. If a nation-state is fortunate to survive these traumatic early years, it slowly matures and develops a distinct political culture and ethos.

Ultimately, like living organisms, nation-states enter a period of decline and decay. Officials become corrupted, institutions become ossified and resistant to change, and the populace no longer believes in the institutions and founding ideals of the nation-state.

History is replete with examples of this dynamic. National boundaries change, oppressed peoples demand an equal say in how government affairs are conducted, while corrupt political and economic elites pass laws in a futile attempt to prevent the coming conflagration.

The United States is at a tipping point. Race is the red thread underlying the history of the United States, from its founding to the present day. The white majority is battling against the inevitable demographic change. By 2050, whites will be a minority with people of color constituting the majority. Fearful of this eventuality, many whites align themselves with deeply racist and reactionary forces in the United States. 

The Supreme Court is the most effective institution in facilitating this reaction. The Supreme Court has given its approval for the establishment of modern Jim Crow laws restricting the voting rights of African Americans. In many states in the South, state legislatures have removed polling stations in districts with large African American populations, leaving only one or two stations per precinct. This represents a naked attempt to prevent African Americans from voting for Democratic candidates and prevent the passage of any form of progressive legislation.

Similarly, the Supreme Court seems prepared to overturn Roe v. Wade. Such action will deny millions of women the right to an abortion, a right that has been recognized since Roe was decided in 1973. Since the right to an abortion was established almost 50 years ago, poll after poll has shown that a solid majority of Americans support the right to choose in all or most cases.

It is the height of conceit and arrogance to assume that decades of progressive legislation can be reversed by six reactionaries sitting on the Supreme Court. These efforts likely will lead to a massive backlash, unleashing popular forces that will create an unbridgeable schism in the American body politic. Cascadians must be ready to defend the ideals of progress and equality. Toward this end, an independent and free Cascadia may be the only option.

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