As the political divide continues to grow in America, a movement is underway in Oregon for several counties to leave the state and join neighboring Idaho.
This secession, known as the Greater Idaho movement, is being championed by conservative groups who feel their values are no longer represented in Oregon's liberal policies.
The movement gained momentum in early 2020, as the Oregon legislature passed a series of controversial bills on issues such as gun control, climate change and healthcare. Many conservative residents felt ignored, leading to an increase in support for the secession movement.
"If you think about it, it's almost like a divorce," says Mike McCarter, president of Citizens for Greater Idaho. "Now, do I agree with divorce? No, but it happens. And so that's what we've got. We've got a division in the state that is almost not reconcilable."
For Christians in these conservative counties, the push for secession is not just about politics, it's also about values. Many of these counties are rural and have deep Christian roots and conservative principles. The secession movement is considered an opportunity for these communities to have more say in policies that align with their beliefs. They believe any such split will benefit their families and neighbors.
One of the main issues driving the push for secession is the Second Amendment. Oregon has some of the strictest gun laws in the country, and the new legislation passed by the state has only further restricted gun ownership. Many residents are concerned that their right to bear arms is being eroded. They believe Idaho would better support their values on this issue.
In addition to gun control, many conservative Christians in Oregon are also concerned about the state's stance on abortion, education and LGBTQ influence.
Oregon is known for being one of the most radical states in the country on these issues, which has led to tension between more conservative communities and the state government.
For the Christian residents of these counties, the push for secession is a way to protect their values and beliefs from what they see as an increasingly secular and liberal culture in Oregon. By joining Idaho, they hope to have more input on policies related to gun ownership, healthcare and social issues.
However, the secession movement faces significant challenges. In order for counties to leave one state and join another, both state legislatures and Congress would need to agree to the change.
The likelihood of this happening is slim, considering the political divide in both Oregon and Idaho, as well as the logistical and legal challenges involved in such a move.
Despite these challenges, the so-called 'Greater Idaho' movement has gained significant support in recent months.
"The people that are voting for this don't think we're wasting our time," Matt McCaw, the spokesman for the Greater Idaho movement, told CBN News. "We see this as a solution that makes sense, is a win-win for everybody involved and the people support it. State lines have moved before in the United States multiple times. So, this absolutely can happen as soon as the elected leaders in Idaho and Oregon decide that it makes sense for everybody involved to happen."
The values these Oregon citizens hold dear are rooted in biblical principles of freedom, justice and righteousness. The secession movement is a way to stand up for what is right and just, to protect families and communities from encroaching cultural darkness they see around them.
Although the outcome of the Greater Idaho movement is uncertain, Christians in these rural counties view the topic as not just about seceding from Oregon, but also beliefs and values and a chance to bring light in the darkness. As the apostle Paul wrote in Ephesians 6:12, "For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms."
James Lasher is Staff Writer for Charisma Media.
To contact us or to submit an article, click here.
Get Charisma's best content delivered right to your inbox! Never miss a big news story again. Click here to subscribe to the Charisma News newsletter.