Thursday, June 05, 2008

Vermont Separatists in Alliance with White Supremacists

Last year, I wrote a post titled Vermont Liberation Front! It described a movement which hopes to have Vermont secede from the USA. I outlined my objections to this based on my understanding of history, law, and reality.

However, now I have a new objection. The primary group calling for the secession of Vermont is the Second Vermont Republic. A new report from the Southern Poverty Law Center has proven that the Vermont separatists are in an alliance with southern white supremacists who believe the former Confederacy is under illegal occupation by the American government. The report is titled North Meets South: Vermont Secessionists Meet with Racist League of the South and was written by Heidi Beirich.

The article noted:

In November 2006, SVR and the Middlebury Institute co-hosted the First North American Separatist Convention in the Montpelier State House (which, ironically, is graced by a large statue of Lincoln). The secessionists-only conference brought together several groups, including the Free Hawaii movement and members of the Alaskan Independence Party. But the bulk of the crowd even then was made up of Southern groups including the racist League of the South; Christian Exodus, a theocracy-minded outfit headed by a former league leader from Texas; and the Abbeville Institute, which was established by Donald Livingston in 2003 after he finally left the League of the South due to its "political baggage." Livingston's institute is devoted to the "Southern tradition," including what it describes as the ignored "achievements of white people in the South."

I have issues with secession. I believe the American people as a whole (as well as the people of the area choosing separation) have to consent to the end of the American Union. The USA will not last forever. For example, will there be a USA four thousand years from now? If there is, will it be the same as it is today? Probably not. As such, secession is not in itself a bad thing.

However, why do separatists groups always tend to have an element of racism? Why not let everyone have a say in the matter and not fall back on tired arguments of "illegal occupation" and only allowing certain people from certain groups based on DNA descent to have the franchise? Separatists of all sorts from the South, to Hawaii, to Vermont keep making this fundamental mistake.

1 comment:

Andy Walpole said...

'why do separatists groups always tend to have an element of racism?'

I think that this is something particular to the Southern states of the USA... I'm not aware of any over independence movement taking on racialist positions outside that area... looking at separatist movements in Britain - Ireland, Scotland, Wales and Cornwall - they all tend to be left-of-centre and very about an identity based on inclusion rather than blood-line...