By Daniel Rigney
You’ve probably heard about the “We the People” White House website (https://petitions.whitehouse.gov) to which secessionists from Texas and elsewhere have been going to register their objection to being citizens of the United States.
I’ll wager that some of these same petitioners also fly American flags in their front yards, and don't see the irony.
The Texas secessionist petition reads as follows:
Peacefully grant the State of Texas to withdraw from the United States of America and create its own NEW government.
The US continues to suffer economic difficulties stemming from the federal government's neglect to reform domestic and foreign spending. The citizens of the US suffer from blatant abuses of their rights such as the NDAA, the TSA, etc. Given that the state of Texas maintains a balanced budget and is the 15th largest economy in the world, it is practically feasible for Texas to withdraw from the union, and to do so would protect it's citizens' standard of living and re-secure their rights and liberties in accordance with the original ideas and beliefs of our founding fathers which are no longer being reflected by the federal government.
Created: Nov 09, 2012
Signatures needed by December 09, 2012 to reach goal of 25,000
Total signatures on this petition
This is only the best-known of the secession petitions. What you may not know is that there are hundreds of other petitions on the same White House website. Many are state-by-state petitions similar to the Texas model above. Most, however, deal with issues unrelated to secession, such as the legalization of marijuana or (no kidding) the right of military service members to place their hands in their pockets.
You may also be unaware that you can visit “We the People” and sign counter-petitions in opposition to the secessionist ones. Some of these alternative petitions are worded cleverly to undercut and undermine the latter. Think of them as a kind of political Aikido. And think about signing one or more of them yourself.
In the past day I've e-signed a “We the People” petition that reads:
The idea is that if Texas secedes from the Union, Austin will secede from Texas. Get it?
A rich assortment of progressive citizens’ initiatives await your signatures, including:
(Note: Similar petitions are cropping up in other cities, such as El Paso, as urban responses to the delusional fantasy of secession. Apparently you don’t have to be located in a state or city to sign a petition on its behalf. I signed the Atlanta proposition from Houston.)
You may also wish to consider:
I have no idea who Drew Curtis is, though I did discover, through this free advertisement, that Fark is a site that features amusing news stories.
If you don’t like the petition options currently available at “We the People,” you have the option to create your own. Be a creative citizen! It's what the founders would have wanted.
To sign a citizen’s petition (or several), or to run a new one up the flagpole and see if anyone salutes, go now to https://petitions.whitehouse.gov, create an account (a task I found a little confusing initially), and return to the website’s frontpage to search for petitions you’d like to support.
I don’t see any mention of restrictions on how many of these we’re allowed to John Hancock. I’ve signed about ten already, and I’m just getting warmed up. My goal is to sign my favorite hundred by Christmas.
I did not sign a humorous petition circulating a few days ago urging President Obama to “do the hokey pokey,” an apparent arrow of wit aimed at secessionist efforts to dominate the petitioning website.
Alas, the hokey petition has been taken down. It seems there’s no place for lightness on an official website.
What is this? Russia?