Give Me Liberty

The comic mini-series Give Me Liberty, by Frank Miller and Dave Gibbons, tells one of those "alternate future history" stories, in its case chronicling the rise of an awful right-wing police state, which eventually expires when the nation fractures into pieces controlled by different factions. It kind of has the logical order of such events backwards; it really just reflects the prejudices of its author among the splintering values of America contemporary to its publication.

The series begins with a man, clearly modeled after Ronald Reagan, in firm control of the presidency, to the point of having successfully repealed the 22nd amendment and enjoying his third term of office. This is a paranoid leftist fantasy, so he's an evil menace who threatens the environment and human rights and surrounds himself with stormtroopers. When he and his entire cabinet are attacked by mad Arabs and he ends up in a coma, the government is inherited by the one liberal politician in the whole comic - who properly worships the rainforest and the Native Americans, until he himself is killed and the country falls apart.

What's ironic is that the series predicts some modern turns of events - such as Saudia Arabia no longer being America's ally, or America losing favor with the United Nations.

The map above shows how the country breaks up. In the center West is a radioactive zone populated by mutants. What's left of the good ol' U.S. of A. is the light blue region. Texas and Florida are independent, though Florida is in danger of being taken over by Cuba. Around the edges of the remaining Union are some breakaway states founded by fringe groups of the Culture Wars, like rabid feminists, health nuts, free enterprisers, religious fundamentalists, "real American" reactionaries, and computer geeks.

The splinter groups are colorful and comical in their fanaticism. Particularly amusing is the homosexual white supremacist group Aryan Thrust, whose motto is "America's future is white and male and gay!" But it's doubtful that the country would split up in accord with the values conflicts of America's late twentieth century unraveling. It's more likely that a breakup would occur along the lines defined by America's Nine Nations.


E Unus Pluribum The Red-Blue Wars
DMZ End of a Nation-State
Like to fantasize about the break-up of the United States? Try these scenarios.

This page copyright Steve Barrera 2001-2014