When Texan governor Rick Perry announced his strong support for HCR 50 (being discussed today by the Texas legislature), it looked like the first step toward secession. Certainly it was a savvy political move for Perry, who is seeking re-election in 2010. But there's more going on here than mere Machiavellian positioning.
A Yankee by upbringing, no I'm not from Dallas, I was first shocked when I heard this increasingly discussed by Texans over the last six to nine months. I've been taught to view "secession" as inextricably linked with racism and other ugly concepts, which likewise are wrapped up into a generally negative worldview of the South.
I can only imagine the shock experienced by scores of millions of Northerners when they heard Governor Perry say openly what his constituents have been discussing privately. But I've come to understand secession is a far more complex issue than it appears on the surface. Below is a list of links related to the secession hullabaloo that bring up important points of discussion:
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Texas secession blog posts
U.S. News & World Reports
Commentary by John Aloysius Farrell - You might not agree with his conclusions, but Farrell does bring up real challenges for an independent Texas at this moment in history.
Democrats: Perry should disavow secession talk
The Dallas Morning News
Rick Perry strikes a chord with comments about Texas secession
Doesn't the Texas Constitution reserve the right of Texas to secede?