Wash­ing­ton DC might be­come a state

Pakistan Observer - - OPINION -

WASH­ING­TON—As the cap­i­tal of the United States, Wash­ing­ton DC is not one of the 50 states. It’s a “fed­eral dis­trict,” hence “Dis­trict of Columbia,” short­ened to “D.C.” But that could soon change, as they are cur­rently bid­ding for state­hood. If that hap­pened, Wash­ing­ton DC would be­come the 51st state, and its lead­ers would give it an en­tirely new name.

That name could quite likely be “New Columbia,” an old name that was ap­proved by vot­ers in a 1982 ref­er­en­dum in which Wash­ing­ton DC tried for state­hood.

It orig­i­nates from Ital­ian ex­plorer Christo­pher Colum­bus, who is ob­vi­ously a crit­i­cal part of U.S. his­tory.

Of course, some long time DC res­i­dents are anx­ious about the name change. Colum­bus’ rep­u­ta­tion as a hero has un­der­gone quite a seachange since the 1980s, with many see­ing him as a bru­tal con­queror rather than a no­ble ex­plorer.

Ac­cord­ing to Matthew Green, an as­so­ciate pro­fes­sor of pol­i­tics at Catholic Univer­sity in Wash­ing­ton DC, “It’s hard to come up with a name that would honor the city’s po­lit­i­cal, liv­ing and sym­bolic di­men­sions equally.”

He men­tions that one of the al­ter­na­tive sug­ges­tions, “Dou­glass Com­mon­wealth” might also be ap­pro­pri­ate due to the fact that Fred­erik Dou­glass was an im­por­tant fig­ure in African-Amer­i­can pol­i­tics.

He lead the abo­li­tion­ist move­ment, which ended slav­ery in the U.S.

Peo­ple are join­ing in the con­ver­sa­tion on so­cial me­dia, adding in their opinion about the name change and pos­si­ble state­hood.

State­hood has long been a fraught is­sue for DC res­i­dents, as many who ac­tu­ally live in the dis­trict sup­port it, while Congress has typ­i­cally been against the idea.

Among the rea­sons for state­hood in­clude the fact that DC isn’t fully rep­re­sented in Congress by vot­ing mem­bers, and that de­ci­sions typ­i­cally made by or­ga­ni­za­tions like a city coun­cil in­stead of­ten re­quire Con­gres­sional ap­proval, tak­ing them out of lo­cal gov­ern­ment’s hands.

Pre­sump­tive Demo­cratic can­di­date Hil­lary Clinton sup­ports the change along with Bernie San­ders, but noth­ing is set in stone yet. The state­hood is­sue will prob­a­bly be de­bated at the Demo­cratic Na­tional Con­ven­tion in July. Un­til then, we’ll just have to sit tight and see what hap­pens.

The post Wash­ing­ton DC might be­come a state, and get a new name ap­peared first on Hello Gig­gles.—Agencies

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