Magazine December 17, 2020, Issue

Will the United States Disintegrate?

(Roman Genn)
We may face an unbridgeable chasm

I saw it coming — 20 years ago. Within days of the 2000 presidential election, I wrote an essay for Commentary called “Republican Nation, Democratic Nation?” in which I argued that the election showed that America was splitting into “two geographically and culturally distinct units.” I went on to explain:

On one side of the fence is an urban- and suburban-based congeries of government employees, union members, blacks, and those highly educated, comparatively affluent “knowledge workers” known to political scientists as the New Class. On the other is the contemporary equivalent of what H. L. Mencken dubbed the Bible belt, .

This article appears as “The Unbridgeable Chasm” in the December 17, 2020, print edition of National Review.

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Terry TeachoutMr. Teachout is the drama critic of the Wall Street Journal and the critic-at-large of Commentary. Satchmo at the Waldorf, his 2011 play about Louis Armstrong, has been produced off Broadway and throughout America.

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