Truckin’ to Treason: The Hot Air of Secession

Bill Day, Cagle Cartoons


by WALTER BRASCH

A white Ford F-250 pick-up rumbled through town, a Confederate rebel flag on a pole behind the cab; on the rear bumper were a pro-life and three Anti-Obama stickers, two of which could not be revealed in a family newspaper.

It wasn’t a lone wolf protest; several cars, trucks, and homes in the area sport similar flags and messages. During the summer, when a 4-wheel Jamboree and a Monster Truck rally are held at the local fairgrounds, attracting thousands from a multi-state area, many trucks fly rebel flags, insignia, and political statements. During the annual eight-day fair at the end of September, vendors sell all kinds of items with the Confederate battle flag, most of them made overseas.

The rebels say they are fierce independents. But, being a “rebel” doesn’t mean you can complain about paying taxes, while also denying climate change and evolution. Nevertheless, those flying rebel flags, although they may be disenchanted and alienated from the mainstream, are still part of traditional mainstream America.

They may claim they oppose “Government” (also known as “gummint”) intruding upon their lives, but think it’s perfectly acceptable for government to make rules about the people’s sexual practices and to invade women’s bodies.

They also believe government has the duty to create laws to require national identification for every citizen and establish restrictive measures that weaken the rights of all people to vote, especially those who aren’t White establishment Republicans. When the U.S. invaded Iraq for reasons that were questionable at best, chest-thumping jingoistic “rebels” were the strongest supporters of military action. But, they remained largely silent when liberals and social activists spoke out about soldiers not being given adequate body armor, and military hospitals not giving the wounded adequate treatment. They have also remained largely silent about the one-fourth of America’s homeless who were combat veterans.

These pretend-rebels gave standing ovations to the PATRIOT Act that established numerous ways the government could violate citizen rights granted by the 1st, 4th, 5th, 6th, 8th, and 14th Amendments. When the federal courts ruled parts of the Act to be unconstitutional, the “patriotic rebels” complained about activist judges.

They listen to conservative talk radio and Fox News, all of which bash the mainstream media, but don’t recognize that the very sources they turn to for information are also mainstream media, owned by establishment multi-millionaires.

They willingly agree with Mitt Romney, even in defeat, that 47 percent of Americans are takers who “want stuff,” but don’t recognize that one of the biggest takers who wanted more “stuff” was Romney himself, who ran a venture capital company that existed to take over other companies. Even fellow Republicans during the primaries called Romney not a venture capitalist but a vulture capitalist.

In a local newspaper, which daily opens a full page, sometimes two full pages, to dozens of one or two paragraphs of grammatically-scurrilous rants from local citizens, are variations of President Obama being a Kenyan-born Muslim who is leading America into Communism and self-destruction, their thoughts mimicking the screed of conservative talk show hosts, pundits, and bloviators.

But the rebel who drove the white F-250 doesn’t live in the Deep South; this is in the rural red center of blue-state Pennsylvania, home of the Declaration of Independence and Gettysburg, the turning point of the Civil War.

The Civil War—known as the War Between the States among Confederate sympathizers—is still being fought. Almost 25,000 Pennsylvanians have now signed petitions to have the Keystone State secede from the union.

More than 700,000 citizens upset about the re-election of President Obama in the past two weeks have signed petitions calling for their states to secede. The states with most of the signatures are Red States, paralleling the former Confederacy, which receive far more in federal dollars than their citizens pay. They are also the states where numerous polls reveal at least one-fourth of all citizens don’t believe in the separation of church and state. Maybe the U.S. can convince Iran and Saudi Arabia, theocratic dictatorships, to annex those states.

However, Texas, with more than 120,000 signatures, leads all lists of petitions. It would be tempting to send the Lone Star State back to Mexico. They get Texas, and the U.S. gets Acapulco, Cancun, and Mazatlan. In 2009, running for re-election, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, trying to burnish his ultra-conservative credentials, had even suggested that not only did he align himself with right-wing extremists but that Texas could become so mad at the federal government they might consider seceding. But now, he says he disagrees with the citizens who ignorantly claim the 10th Amendment gives them right to secede.

Perhaps it’s because Gov. Perry realizes that the only way a state can secede from the union, according to the Constitution, is not by having a majority of citizens petition the White House or even having an election, but only by an armed insurrection, something that didn’t work in 1861—and won’t work today.

Nevertheless, there is one possibility for those who so willingly signed secession petitions, mouthing off before they understood the penalties for treason.

For more than four decades, these conservative pretend-rebels told everyone who disagreed with them and protested American policy that they were un-American and unChristian. Not knowing even the basics of the Constitution or political philosophy, the conservative “rebels” called protestors for social justice pinkos, Commies, and traitors. They drilled into the public discourse the mantra of “America—love it or leave it.” By their own actions the past two weeks, it may now be time for a few hundred thousand to pack their bags and take their own advice.

[Walter Brasch proudly calls himself a social activist who, although he often disagrees with government actions, believes in the right of the state to exist and to protect its citizens from all forms of terrorism and stupidity, both foreign and domestic. His current book, which looks at the American Revolution and the Revolution of the 1960s, is Before the First Snow, available at amazon.com and www.greeleyandstone.com]

LEGAL NOTICE ON CARTOON: The above copyrighted cartoon is licensed to run on TMV. Reproduction elsewhere without licensing is strictly prohibited. See great cartoons by all the top political cartoonists at http://cagle.com. To license this cartoon for your own site, visit http://politicalcartoons.com

Author: WALTER BRASCH, PH.D.

Award-winning journalist and author, specializing in social issues, media, and pop culture. http://www.linkedin.com/pub/walter-brasch/9/846/616

Share This Post On

21 Comments

  1. I suggested El Salvador in a recent comment. I stick by that suggestion.

  2. What about Belize? That’s where the dirtbag founder of McAfee expatriated to. Of course he’s on the run for his life from a crooked judiciary, go figure.

  3. I also hear that Somalia is tailor-made for these completely self-reliant individualists.

  4. Nah…Somalia has a theocratic factor that would not go well with them. They would need to convert to Islam before it would suit their purposes. They have to stick to the American continents to ensure that some brand of Christianity prevails.

  5. Yea but aside from that they’d get a lot of what they want. Small central govt, no gun control, school prayer, not teaching evolution, no gay marriage, and the best, NO CAPITAL GAINS TAX! They have created the conservative ideal over there :)

  6. Slam, the # of ways the U.S. resembles Iran is scary as hell.

  7. Hard to believe that in the 21st Century, we have so many ignorant, frightened, neanderthals. If only they could secede. Then they wouldn’t be able to have any say about federally elected officials. That would never be allowed to happen though no matter how many signatures for the simple reason that Republicans would lose so much of their base. Too bad.

  8. Hard to believe that in the 21st Century, we have so many ignorant, frightened, neanderthals.

    Hard to believe someone takes a absurd caricature and adds a bunch of straw men opinions to it and people believe it’s an accurate representation of a whole class of people but danged if some won’t swallow bs whole.

  9. Apparently someone isn’t aware of all the signatures that have been signed in these states.
    Unfortunately, it isn’t a caricature. It IS an accurate representation.

  10. Can I start a petition for California? I’d rather not pay off their debt.

  11. Wow, you guys are right. The guy who started the Texas petition seems to be a real whack job. A five year Marine Corp veteran now enrolled as a freshman at the University of Texas at Arlington. He appears to be a real kook…he’s upset about “Rampant overspending at home and abroad; Congress’ failure to come up with budgets for years; and what he sees as a loss of individual freedoms.”
    http://dfw.cbslocal.com/2012/1.....-wrote-it/

  12. Here’s the thing about success, when it works out well, people start to think it is the natural state of things. And inevitably, incompetent morons start thinking left to their own devices they could do it better on their own. We have law and order. We have a stable food supply. We have the infrastructure that allows us to have huge population centers that have sanitation and power. These things don’t just happen.

    You know why we subsidize our food? Because the food supply fell on its ass in the 30′s. So yes, we waste billions every year, but in return we KNOW when we go to the supermarket there will 50 kinds of bread on the shelves. That’s not luck. Its worked so well that people now think we should ban farm subsidies, not just a bit, but entirely, and let the free market handle it. Right.

    You know why we had bank regulations after 1929? Because they were needed. But again, those worked so well for so long, we thought we didn’t need them. That the underlying reasons we made those rules had somehow vanished for human nature and that of the system. Right.

    These people wanting to throw in the towel and go it on their own are of the same breed. That the success and opportunities we have made in this country is somehow part of the soil and the air, not the result of a remarkably planned system that is really complex. So complex pretty much nobody gets how it all fits together. They just see their little part of it and think they know it all. Fools.

  13. With 300 million people in this country, you’re going to have a full spectrum types, but I would imagine most of the people signing these petitions are just trying to make a statement regarding their dissatisfaction with the fiscal state of the country.

  14. Apparently someone isn’t aware of all the signatures that have been signed in these states.
    Unfortunately, it isn’t a caricature. It IS an accurate representation.

    There have been signatures in every state and somehow everyone uses the term gummint? Yeah sure accurate.

    Can I start a petition for California? I’d rather not pay off their debt.

    They already have one. And have had a succession movement for years but lets pretend it’s all about Obama.

  15. I have no trouble with the word “neanderthal” being used to describe a great many from the political right. For each republican who is thoughtful, fiscally concerned, and socially evolved it seems there are two more who are intellectually non-curious and who soak up the worst of the reactionary media blather like sponges. So of course they aren’t all neanderthals, but the trend hasn’t exactly been heading the right direction has it.

  16. zephyr, You described the “range” of the right as you see it. How would you describe the “range” of the left?

  17. I would imagine most of the people signing these petitions are just trying to make a statement regarding their dissatisfaction with the fiscal state of the country.

    Like they tried to make a statement when President Bush triple whammed the economy with:

    1. Two unilateral, unfunded, mismanaged wars;
    2. Deregulation of the financial sector; and,
    3. Tax cuts during a time of unprecedented spending.

    You see I imagine that most of the people signing these petitions are ignorant, undereducated rednecks (they’ve got them in every state) that just can’t stand the thought of a black man in the White House…

    “Neanderthal” in the context that ‘sheknows’ and ‘zephyr’ use it it ‘on the mark’ for a lot of the signers and not a few of their defenders.

    I did not mean to say that the Conservatives are generally stupid. I meant to say that stupid people are generally Conservative. I believe that is so obviously and universally admitted a principle that I hardly think any gentleman will deny it. (Public and Parliamentary Speeches, 31 May 1866, pp. 85-86.) – John Stuart Mill

  18. “I did not mean to say that the Conservatives are generally stupid. I meant to say that stupid people are generally Conservative. I believe that is so obviously and universally admitted a principle that I hardly think any gentleman will deny it. (Public and Parliamentary Speeches, 31 May 1866, pp. 85-86.) – John Stuart Mill”
    Liberal arrogance has been going on a long time.

  19. Not everyone uses the term “gummint”..only the ones depicted in this article. Not all who have signed a petition to secede over the years are knuckle-draggers, but this article deals with this type of mentality. EE, do I believe they exist?..of COURSE. We have all seen them. Sorry that you are ashamed they happen to be Republican, but…in the context of this particuliar article, they ARE.

  20. Sorry that you are ashamed they happen to be Republican, but…in the context of this particuliar article, they ARE.

    Why should I be sorry? I’m not a republican.

  21. Why should I be sorry? I’m not a republican.

    Statements like this from a regular commenter who over the last several years has been in defense of, and lockstep with, Republican positions and policies is an excellent example of the point sheknows was making… A lot of republicans are ashamed to admit that they are Republicans.

    “I am not a Republican” Republicans see no hypocrisy in their continued support and agreement with everything the GOP stands for and their constant denial of any association to it. This is probably why they are surprised when people listening shake their heads in disbelief.

Submit a Comment