I’ve talked about the possibility of a second civil war in the United States several times. But what I haven’t gone into much (aside from taking a look at other people’s guesses) was this: Who would win?
Here’s the tl;dr version: In a civil war between Red and Blue, as we understand the terms in American politics today, the Reds would win. Overwhelmingly, quickly, decisively. Here’s why.
Look at who is having babies. It’s not the left. People in red states have more kids, and while that’s not a one hundred percent correlation to “people on the political right have more kids,” it’s a pretty good broad indicator. Utah is (perhaps unsurprisingly) the state with the highest number of kids per household, with our own Alaska (a tad more surprising) coming in second. Texas is fourth; New York, forty-second.
Why is this important? Because a higher birthrate translates into more young men of military age. If we are to have an armed conflict, this is the single most important demographic, as these are the people who will do the bulk of the fighting, whether in the regular military or in more-or-less organized militias. While blue states have higher populations, the red states are more adept at sustaining those populations. But aside from numbers, a state must have the right attitude for victory, and that’s largely cultural.
Look through the history of humanity, and you won’t see many wars fought over pronouns. Young men – the demographic described above – are generally more motivated to fight for love of home, hearth, and country than for ‘social justice’ or other nebulous terms. Denizens of the red states, people on the right of center, are more likely to hold attitudes that would serve well in conflict: Self-reliance, thrift, courage, mental and physical fortitude.
The rank-and-file military would be key players. The military leans right, except for some senior officers who are often as much politician as soldier; it’s likely, though, that most ordinary soldiers, especially combat arms soldiers, would side with the right, in many cases even taking their weapons and supplies with them.
Add to that the fact that the left, especially the radical progressive left, tends to badly overestimate the popularity of their policy positions. The vast majority of the population does not want drag queens wiggling their crotches in front of children, or allowing twelve-year-olds to make decisions to undergo life-changing “gender-affirmation” surgeries and treatments. The very lunacy of the progressive left will tip a lot of fence-sitters, people who would otherwise support liberal positions like same-sex marriage, into supporting the right if things come to open conflict. And, finally, two words: Second Amendment. The rural/suburban right are far, far more likely to own/use/maintain proficiency with firearms. Who has the guns can make a huge difference, and in America today, the right has almost all the guns.
Honestly, look at the progressive left’s track record. Every time they have attempted to run a society, even on a small scale, the result has been abject failure. Example: Seattle’s “CHAZ” attempt, where leftist radicals seized control of several blocks of a major city. Within days, they were out of food; within weeks, the zone had devolved to a dictatorship led by a warlord, backed by a gang of armed thugs. This is not a formula for the kind of cohesive society that wins wars.
Examine these maps, based on the 2016 election. The first is Trumpland; the second, the Clinton Archipelago.
The implications of these maps are enormous.
Look at this from a strategic sense. By and large, the left is concentrated in a few small geographic areas. For the most part, these areas are heavily urban, and dependent on the outskirts – red country – for electricity, gasoline, food and clothing, indeed most of the requirements of a modern lifestyle. It would not be terribly difficult for a military force or even a well-organized militia to shut down imports into even a large city. The blockage wouldn’t have to be leak-proof, but even preventing fifty percent of a major city’s food and energy imports would have that city melting down within a matter of days.
Indeed, in any hypothetical second civil war in the United States, that’s the main advantage the right would have; penned into their cities, deprived of internet, electricity, and food, the big blue cities would very rapidly destroy themselves; all the right would have to do is wait.
Now, I’m not advocating the idea of a civil war. The likely result of this, regardless of which side wins, would be deaths in the hundreds of thousands at a minimum, more likely in the millions. It would mean trillions in economic losses because of the infrastructure loss and the collapse of the big cities, which in all honesty remain great centers of economic activity and innovation. It would engender hatreds and ill will that will last for generations, and may very well damage the Republic beyond repair. America as we know it would almost certainly be no more. This is something nobody should want and an outcome that we should take great pains to avoid.
But if it comes down to it – these are the reasons that the right would win, and quickly. Agitators on the left, some of whom (I’m looking at you, Anderson Cooper) have been calling for “economic civil war” should take this into account.