Broderick: Is America headed toward a two-state solution?

Unorthodox times may require unprecedented actions. I fear that time may have arrived in America, as painful as it is to acknowledge.

Watching our democracy and its cherished values free-fall dramatically into disrepair, distrust, and dysfunction during President Trump’s time in office, culminating in an insurrection on the U.S. Capitol that he helped organize and encourage, it would be foolish to see those dark days as somehow behind us. Sadly, tens of millions of our fellow citizens embraced those cringe-worthy days as “making America great again.” Bridging that divisive chasm as “one nation under God” may no longer be possible or even advisable.

John Broderick
John Broderick

President Biden is out of central casting for normal, thoughtful, and experienced leadership that allows him to intelligently tackle and discuss the vexing challenges we face at home and abroad after four years of chaos and confusion created by the norm-breaking and law-breaking Trump administration. But truth, competence and inclusion have apparently fallen out of favor these days.

Former President Trump, in all his bombast and disinformation, remains the odds-on favorite to get the Republican nomination in 2024. Apparently under current Republican standards, Trump, despite his four years of careening, reactive, fear-filled, anti-government government is seen by many as the logical answer to our nation’s growing challenges. Indeed, he is seen by many as the only answer. The BIG LIE and the many kooky conspiracy theories it spawned are still very much alive and thriving. It was once said that “truth will set you free.” Republicans, with few exceptions, have now unsubscribed to that maxim. Truth, it seems, is now the first victim in the face of inconvenient facts. What in the world has become of our country and those who purport to lead it? Is this really who we have become?

America in all its greatness cannot survive the centrifugal forces of self-destruction loosed and growing across our land. We have become incapable it appears to address pressing national problems like climate change, voter suppression, assault rifles on our streets, kids being gunned down in our schools, the dangerous rise of white nationalism and antisemitism, and the self-confident smugness of growing ignorance across a host of national issues. American values and common ties that once proudly cemented our diverse nation are constantly being undercut by those who would turn back the clock on American progress and continue to create false-flag culture wars that turn Americans against each other.

Increasingly I don’t recognize my country and its growing tolerance of intolerance and its fear of the truth. What disturbs me most is my nagging belief that we have already become “two nations under God” and that without a shot being fired we might need to make that a physical reality: one nation blue and the other red. One of those new countries (like the one I grew up in) would constantly, albeit imperfectly, strive to address the real needs of its people, understand, harness  and promote its diversity and cherish its democratic values while ever-trying to become “a more perfect union” and the other could salute aggregated power, stifle dissent, declare martial law to quell protesters, build walls at its borders, rewrite history to suit its needs, disregard realities, overturn election results on false claims of voter fraud, disenfranchise women, cut taxes for the rich, arm all its citizens and ignore the global leadership responsibilities of a great nation. Something needs to change and soon or a two-state solution for America may be exactly where we’re headed. Even more unsettling is that a two-state solution may be the only answer to America’s woes. I pray I’m wrong.

John T. Broderick Jr. is the founder of the Warren B. Rudman Center for Justice, Leadership and Public Policy at UNH Law and formerly served as chief justice of the New Hampshire Supreme Court.

This article originally appeared on Portsmouth Herald: Broderick: Is America headed toward a two-state solution?