According to Rich Biancone, a volunteer with the group that’s looking to turn Maryland’s five westernmost — and predominantly conservative — counties into its own state, tonight’s town hall meeting at Allegany College of Maryland is “for supporters, detractors, or those just plain curious.” I choose (C).
The Western Maryland initiative, begun by Scott Strzelczyk of Carroll County, has been gaining steam. The group’s Facebook page has over 7,000 likes, and they’ve rolled out a decent-looking website — featuring a mile-long list of grievances with Annapolis.
The first grievance I happen to agree with: “They have gerrymandered the State Delegate and Senate districts as well as the federal congressional districts to dilute and eliminate the minority voice in the political process.”
Most of them I can’t speak to, and could use citations. A couple are ridiculous: “They have implemented the State run exchanges under the Affordable Care Act.” The gall!
Oh, and this one: “The very idea that a drop of rain lands on your grass is not a pollutant, but one that lands once in left [sic] on your driveway is a pollutant, is absurd.” No it’s not. The rain tax may have been implemented with an incredible level of inconsistency, but the basic premise — that impervious surfaces contribute to the pollution of our bodies of water — is sound.
But however legitimate their complaints may be, it’s hard to see secession ever happening. But maybe if the WMI explodes with grassroots support, it could influence Annapolis. Or, no, probably not.