How red America and blue America became two separate countries

Americans are increasingly trying to create two very different countries in the places we live. Just look at recent laws in Mississippi and New York.

Red and blue states are being driven further apart.
(Image credit: Illustration | iStock)

By this November, all (or at least most) Americans may become united in the belief that making Donald Trump the most powerful human being on Earth would be exceedingly unwise. But in the meantime, we keep getting more reminders that America is fundamentally two different countries, increasingly at odds and moving farther apart.

Look at what's happened just in the last week. In Mississippi, Gov. Phil Bryant (R) signed a bill allowing all manner of private entities to discriminate against gay people if they justify it on the basis of their religious beliefs. That follows on a recently passed North Carolina law which forbids any city or county from passing anti-discrimination ordinances to protect LGBT people. At the same time, the Democratic governors of California and New York signed bills raising their states' minimum wages to $15 over the next few years. And if you look at the measures that will be on state ballots in the fall, you see even more of this divergence: Liberal states will be voting to legalize marijuana and raise wages, while conservative states will try to restrict abortion rights, undermine unions, and create a constitutional right to hunt and fish.

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