Image by Thomas Hawk, and used under a Creative Commons license
When I listen to testimony before Idaho’s state legislative committees, I invariably hear—mostly from conservative speakers, but not exclusively—multiple people mention how many years they have been “citizens of Idaho.”
I thought this was an interesting slip of the tongue. After all, those testifying were residents of Idaho and likely citizens of the United States. I don’t recall ever hearing anyone call herself a “California citizen” or a “citizen of Iowa” (or Virginia or D.C.) when I lived in those places.
Still, I wasn’t sure whether to be amused (was the use of “citizen” ignorant or accidental?) or infuriated (was it intentional?).
And then I came across these passages in the Idaho state GOP platform:
“We believe that Idaho Citizens should not and or shall not be taxed for federally mandated health care.”
“The Idaho Republican Party recognizes that the future of this great state lies with our faith and reliance on God our Creator, in our strong efforts to uphold family values, and in the quality of education provided for its citizens.”
“The benefits of hydroelectric power should be retained for the citizens of Idaho.”
“We encourage all Idaho citizens, and their religious, civic, and community organizations, to be actively engaged in this effort.”
This explains why the state GOP has made sure we’ll soon need passports to leave the state on an airplane—or, really, to fly anywhere in the U.S.
This state really is another country.