Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.



September 2014

Is Secession Acceptable Again?

Written by , Posted in Culture & Society, Foreign Affairs & Policy, Liberty & Limited Government

An interesting aspect of yesterday’s vote for Scottish independence is that it has Americans discussing political separation without all the unwanted historical baggage of the Civil War and race relations. That is, there have been substantive discussions even among Americans on the pros and cons of Scotland leaving the United Kingdom (they ultimately voted to stay) without anyone claiming the very idea of secession to be racist, as so often happens when it is considered within the United States.

Even though the Scottish vote resulted in affirmation of the union that forms the United Kingdom, the orderly acceptance of the vote stands in stark contrast to the threats of violence that come in response to even idle talk in the US. Just suggest that a state might leave the union, and you won’t have to wait long for indignant statists to wag their fingers and sarcastically warn about “how well that went last time.” In other words, try to leave the union and they’ll wage war upon you and burn your cities to the ground. In the name of unity, naturally.

If the British, who once fought a war to prevent the American colonies their independence, can agree that they want no unwilling subjects and indicate they would have accepted without bloodshed the will of the Scottish people to secede, then is it not time for Americans to stop threatening violence at long-shot prospects of political separation?