The Olympus


Meghan Oehlerking, Reporter

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If Washington State, Oregon, a bit of northern California, Idaho, and a small section of Canada were to ever separate for their independence and form their own country, it would be named Cascadia. Cascadia itself is a movement that was created with the intentions of bringing the Pacific Northwest together so those that live in the area can be in a country that agrees with their culture and political views.

Things that differentiate the Pacific Northwest from the rest of the country are ideas such as environmentalism, bioregionalism, and culture. This all basically means that we differ from the rest of the country in our physical landscape, political views, policies, and culture. The idea is that with these factors in mind, we would prosper and be able to move forward and progress much faster if we were not still a part of the rest of the country due to the vast differences in everything.

There was a study conducted by Western Standard in 2005 that showed that there was a 35.7% support rate in British Columbia and a 42% in Alberta for the secession from Canada. There was no data gathered from the other participants like Washington, Oregon, and Idaho because no research was done there. Though, there was a 2008 poll done by Zogby International that found 22% of Americans support a states rights to peacefully secede from the union if they see it is best. This was the highest approval rating since the American Civil War. The idea of Cascadia was heavily discussed in the 1990’s and while the September 11 attacks tabled the movement, the idea was still going strong. It even placed  #8 on TIME’s “Top 10 Aspiring Nations” in 2011, though it was noted that it “has little chance of ever becoming a reality”.

Freshman Teagan Youman believes that if this movement could theoretically work, then it would be great. “If there could just be a stable government, then yeah, I think it would be a good idea. It’s like when California wanted to break into a few different states.” Youman then brings up the point of how the timing isn’t good. “If it were just not now, or a different time, then maybe it could be a good idea.”  Junior Nick Walsh does not think it is a good idea, though he does not understand much about the movement. “I honestly do not know much about this… Though from the little info digging that has been done.. Why?.. The boundary lines just don’t make much sense. Not only that, but we would have no particular reason to leave. At least, no reason that hasn’t already been discussed by a majority of the country anyways. Also, you are taking tourism options away from visitors. Our national parks, wildlife, etc. And as much as we disagree with the Republicans, they are also Americans and we have some sort of duty to work with them, and also show the country we can stick together. Also, if you take away Washington, you take away a lot of the Democratic votes.”

Walsh brings up a valid point of the potential border issues and the voting system. After all, you are taking away not just whole states, but parts of others and a large portion of the Democratic votes will gone. With Washington and Oregon gone, the Democratic voting system will lose a strong amount of power and this could leave smaller, less populated Democratic voting states without as strong of a chance in future elections.

Overall, there are mixed feelings about the thought of becoming a new country. There are pros and cons to seceding from the union and taking a part of another country’s land. It may collapse or it may prosper just as America did. For now, Cascadia is just a movement.


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