Especially for My Friends Who Don’t Live in the US

This map and the article that goes with it , from Business Insider, explain so well what I’ve had a hard time communicating to anyone. It makes the point that there are actually several “nations” in the United States and they do not have the same needs, philosophies or agendas. I’d go so far as to say they don’t even know that much about each other.

I live in the two fingers of pale blue “El Norte” that penetrate Colorado (the southern square state). I definitely (as the article suggests we do) “self-sorted” when I moved out here after retiring from my career in FAR Southern California (pale blue). I consciously chose to live in the part of Colorado with the most Hispanic influence because my life in California became increasingly “bi-cultural” the longer I lived there.

I think this is a very good illustration of why our recent presidential election went the way it did and it (subtly) gives advice to anyone reaching for that office in the future. We might say we are “one nation indivisible” as our pledge states, but, in reality, we’re several distinct cultures with different values united by a government and, to some extent, a common language.

10 thoughts on “Especially for My Friends Who Don’t Live in the US

  1. You nailed this! I like the way you have designated Central Florida as the deep south but further south is a totally different culture.

  2. It’s a little confusing, I would think Ca. would be the far left and Alaska looped in with the far right. Having never lived out there, don’t know…but I know Texas is definitely the far right.

    • It’s interesting because it was published in Business Insider in Australia — I don’t know where the author is from. The coastal part of CA is pretty left. Where I lived was definitely different from San Francisco because it was predominantly Latino. I think the guy got that part right. But I have no idea when or how eastern manufacturing hit Wyoming, Montana, etc. I’m from those places, but it doesn’t seem to me like anything like that happened at all. In my perspective (Denver excepted) it’s rugged individualism and people will vote for whatever candidate will leave them alone. I think Alaska fits, but he mentions the two large cities as being left coast and maybe that’s true. There are limited taxes in those states — Wyoming has no income tax, for example. It might be more complex than this article says it is.

  3. I found the article, map, and your post and comments fascinating. For a good part of my life, I had little interest in politics, but that has changed in the past year or two (and especially now, given that astounding U.S. election campaign), but social studies are quite another kettle of fish. Aunt Beulah nailed it: this post was enlightening and thought provoking. Thank you!

    • You’re welcome! It was eye-opening for me. I knew about the Far West (which I don’t think this guy has gotten 100%) and my little Hispanic world(s) but how they fit with the rest of the country and what the rest of the country IS was an education.

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