We seem to have found a new fad where people in rural areas of a state decide that they want to secede and form their own state. There’s a group in Northern California trying it, another in Northern Colorado and now one in Western Maryland (there’s also allegedly one in Michigan, but no one here seems to have heard about it).
West Virginia was the last state to break off from another. Now, 150 years later, a 49-year-old information technology consultant wants to apply the knife to Maryland’s five western counties. “The people are the sovereign,” says Scott Strzelczyk, leader of the fledgling Western Maryland Initiative, and the western sovereigns are fed up with Annapolis’s liberal majority, elected by the state’s other sovereigns.
“If you think you have a long list of grievances and it’s been going on for decades, and you can’t get it resolved, ultimately this is what you have to do,” says Strzelczyk, who lives in New Windsor, a historic town of 1,400 people in Carroll County. “Otherwise you are trapped.”