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banquo's_bumble_puppy
2004-Dec-22, 12:55 PM
Okay, this canuck is confused-

What's the difference between Washington, D.C. and Washington State? I know that D.C. stands for District of Columbia....but what is a "District" ? Also, why is Texas a republic?

mickal555
2004-Dec-22, 01:03 PM
All I know is that there are 50 of them and the two best are detached

Candy
2004-Dec-22, 01:21 PM
Confused about the proper name for the Nation's capital? If so, you're not alone. (http://dcpages.com/History/DC_Name_History.shtml)
Oneís a State (on the west coast), and oneís the Nationís capital (on the east coast).

sidmel
2004-Dec-22, 01:54 PM
Want to add to your confusion? Some states, like mine, are a Commonwealth. As for Washington D.C., it's not a true state, it is seperate district set aside for the capital at it founding:

http://www.dcpages.com/History/DC_Name_History.shtml

I have to admit it's been awhile since my high school history days, but here goes. Texas was once a seperate country called the First Republic of Texas and was part of Mexico before they revolted. We later fought a war and annexed the new territory.

Many times it has to do with the conditions under which a territory was accepted into the union. In order for a territroy to become a state, they had to meet certain requirements for population and government. The difference in, say republic or commonwealth may be how the original territory incorporated their government.

But, I'm a lay man in this regards and could full of it.

Swift
2004-Dec-22, 02:10 PM
sidmel has it right, though "The Republic of Texas" or "The Commonwealth of Massachusetts" only makes a difference in the name, not how its government works.

The District of Columbia is a weird case, they are not a state and the way they are governed is very different; for example, they have no Senator and only one Representative. For most of their history, they did not even vote for their own city government.

State with the longest official name... the smallest by area, "The State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations". Good thing the state police don't have to put it on their cars. :D

Only state that was a kingdom... Hawaii

NASA Fan
2004-Dec-22, 02:22 PM
I have to admit it's been awhile since my high school history days, but here goes. Texas was once a seperate country called the First Republic of Texas and was part of Mexico before they revolted. We later fought a war and annexed the new territory.

Texas was ruled by many different nations, the last one being Mexico who we fought and eventually beat. You have heard of the Battle of the Alamo (I believe that there was recently a little movie made about that battle :D ), well the Mexican's outnumbered us BIG time, and eventually beat us and killed all the people inside the Alamo (an old mission). This spured the battle cry "Remember the Alamo" which empowered the freedom fighters to beat the Mexicans at an area know as San Jacinto (where they have a really cool monument). We were an independent nation for several years, and eventually joined the United States--then ceceded during the civil war--but that is another story.

I would give dates and a bit more info but I still have to fix my lunch and get to work.

SeanF
2004-Dec-22, 02:26 PM
The District of Columbia is a weird case, they are not a state and the way they are governed is very different; for example, they have no Senator and only one Representative. For most of their history, they did not even vote for their own city government.
Nitpick. DC has neither Senators nor Representatives. They do have what they call a "delegate" to the House of Representatives, but the delegate does not get to vote.

Captain Kidd
2004-Dec-22, 02:37 PM
I've always wondered if the slogan on their license plate is historical or a tongue-in-cheek reference to their current situation, or both:

Taxation Without Representation

ToSeek
2004-Dec-22, 02:40 PM
I've always wondered if the slogan on their license plate is historical or a tongue-in-cheek reference to their current situation, or both:

Taxation Without Representation

It's a complaint, put in place about five years ago or thereabouts. The residents have wanted statehood - or the equivalent - for many years. As it is, they have no legislative representation at all (even though Congress provides much of their government's funding) and at the national level vote only for President.

banquo's_bumble_puppy
2004-Dec-22, 04:23 PM
and we have territories-

http://www.nunavuttourism.com/

Captain Kidd
2004-Dec-22, 04:49 PM
I've always wondered if the slogan on their license plate is historical or a tongue-in-cheek reference to their current situation, or both:

Taxation Without Representation

It's a complaint, put in place about five years ago or thereabouts. The residents have wanted statehood - or the equivalent - for many years. As it is, they have no legislative representation at all (even though Congress provides much of their government's funding) and at the national level vote only for President.Thanks, :) what I thought but wasn't sure.

The Supreme Canuck
2004-Dec-22, 07:21 PM
That's never seemed right to me. The capital doesn't have national representation. I'm with the D.C. residents on this one. But since I'm Canadian, that doesn't really matter...

Moral support?

8-[

Jim
2004-Dec-22, 07:35 PM
Texas was ruled by many different nations...

Spain, France, Mexico, Texas, US, Confederacy, US again.


I would give dates and a bit more info but I still have to fix my lunch and get to work.

March 2, 1836 Texas declared independence from Mexico.
April 21, 1836 The Texian army defeated Santa Ana and the Mexican army at San Jacinto (a marshy area along Buffalo Bayou, just outside present day Houston... The battle is one of the most popsided in history, and also the source for "The Yellow Rose of Texas".).
1845 Texas agreed to and was annexed by the US; this required a Constitutional Convention and popular vote in Texas and a joint resolution in the US Congress.
December 29, 1845 Texas became a US state.

One interesting aspect of the Articles of Annexation is that Texas retains the right to divide into as many as five states. Sam Rayburn used this as leverage while he was in the US House (and Speaker). If the Senate refused to see his point of view, he would threaten to have Texas divide and get their 10 Senators to vote his way.

bobjohnston
2004-Dec-22, 07:58 PM
Texas was once a seperate country called the First Republic of Texas and was part of Mexico before they revolted. We later fought a war and annexed the new territory.

As a Texan, I can set the record straight. In 1845 Texas annexed the United States. We got the raw end of the deal.

(BTW, first came annexation, then Mexico declared war on the U.S.)

SeanF
2004-Dec-22, 08:15 PM
That's never seemed right to me. The capital doesn't have national representation. I'm with the D.C. residents on this one.
Uh-uh. The reason the seat of federal government is not a state is because it wouldn't be "fair" to the other states to have one of them that closely entwined with the feds.

Roving Philosopher
2004-Dec-22, 08:22 PM
That's never seemed right to me. The capital doesn't have national representation. I'm with the D.C. residents on this one. But since I'm Canadian, that doesn't really matter...

Moral support?

8-[

Actually, if I remember correctly, it was set up that way on purpose, so that the federal capital was not a part of any state. I'm not sure of the reason, but it seems like you might run into a problem with the state government exerting undue influence on the federal government (and it may also be the case that when the Constitution was being ratified, no state would go along if the capital was a part of another state). So they set aside some land to serve as the national capital.

Edit: I see SeanF beat me to it

The Supreme Canuck
2004-Dec-22, 08:56 PM
Sure, I can see it being a separate district, I just think that its residents should have federal representation.

But maybe we should stop discussing this before we wander any further into politics... don't want to get this thread locked...

pumpkinpie
2004-Dec-22, 09:03 PM
Sure, I can see it being a separate district, I just think that its residents should have federal representation.

But maybe we should stop discussing this before we wander any further into politics... don't want to get this thread locked...

You know, after reading this thread all day, It never crossed my mind that it was about "politics." At least, not the kind that is discouraged on this board. IMHO, it's going along just fine!

The Supreme Canuck
2004-Dec-22, 09:19 PM
Sure, but I like to be cautious. Things can fall apart pretty quickly. 'Spose I could keep going, but I'm a little frightened. :oops: :wink:

jamestox
2004-Dec-22, 09:34 PM
Actually, rather than falling into the category of "politics", this would seem to be more "American civics" - the "mechanics" of how the governing system works verses party beliefs, platforms, etc., which I would term politics.....

:-k

The Supreme Canuck
2004-Dec-22, 09:36 PM
Alright, you win. I'll stick around. :)

Andromeda321
2004-Dec-22, 09:37 PM
Don't worry about it I really can't see this getting into a heated debate because interesting an issue as it is I don't think anyone gets up in arms about DC representation (or at least hereabouts).
By the way, for those interested, the real reason Texas was its own country for awhile had to do with the politics of the day: for every slave state there had to be a free state so Texas couldn't be admitted as a state until there was another state without slavery admitted to the union. At least that's what my American history teacher said.
Also another question: what's the official name of Vermont? Because back in the day it was its own country as well...

ToSeek
2004-Dec-22, 10:11 PM
Don't worry about it I really can't see this getting into a heated debate because interesting an issue as it is I don't think anyone gets up in arms about DC representation (or at least hereabouts).


Heh. Come visit my part of the world sometime....

SeanF
2004-Dec-22, 10:58 PM
Sure, I can see it being a separate district, I just think that its residents should have federal representation.
Hmm. Draw me the distinction there. The only real influence states have on each other is through their federal representation. If DC has federal representation, than it is de facto a state.

The Supreme Canuck
2004-Dec-22, 11:07 PM
Oh, nuts! I forgot about that bit of the American system. In Canada members of parliament represent ridings (electoral districts), not provinces. Ridings are small and, though they do not cross provincial borders, are independent of provincial and territorial governments entirely. I seem to have gotten my countries crossed. My mistake. #-o

But shouldn't the residents of D.C. have some say in federal matters, other than by the election of the president? They're affected by federal laws, so why shouldn't they have some say in those?

Bob B.
2004-Dec-22, 11:49 PM
As for Washington D.C., it's not a true state, it is seperate district set aside for the capital at it founding
Actually, Washington is the name of the city that is coextensive with the District of Columbia.

The Supreme Canuck
2004-Dec-22, 11:55 PM
Can someone tell me why it's called the District of Colombia? I'm sure there's a reason.

Candy
2004-Dec-23, 12:00 AM
Can someone tell me why it's called the District of Colombia? I'm sure there's a reason.

Pierre L'Enfant, designer of the city, thought of it as the Capital City. Jefferson referred to it as Federal Town. Washington, however, considered this undignified, and instead used the name Federal City.

The initial plot of land authorized by the Constitution for the seat of the US government was a 100-square mile area. The first commissioners appointed to acquire the property for the new capital and construct the first government buildings made the obvious choice and named the city Washington. At the same time, they decided to call the entire 100 square-mile area the District of Columbia. Congress later went along with this decision through legislative references to the area.

The city of Washington as designed by L'Enfant did not, of course, fill the 100 square-mile area authorized by the Constitution for the seat of government. The area also included the cities of Georgetown (1751) and Alexandria (1749), which were already in existence. Congress designated the rest of the 10-mile by 10-mile portion outside the corporate limits of these three cities as the County of Alexandria, in the section given by Virginia, and the County of Washington, in the Maryland-ceded portion.

In 1846 Congress voted to give back to Virginia all the land that state had given to the government in 1790 for creation of the District of Columbia. This move returned about 32 square miles of territory to Virginia. Residents of Alexandria and what is now Arlington County, Virginia, thus lost District of Columbia residency and again became Virginia citizens.

If all this sounds confusing, think of Congress trying to enact legislation dealing with the local affairs of this area. Congress tried to clarify the jurisdictional muddle when it established a territorial form of government for the capital in 1871. It revoked the charters of the cities of Washington and Georgetown and also abolished a levy court for the County of Washington. All legal municipal functions were given to the District of Columbia.

Then Congress changed its mind again and decided that Georgetown and the County of Washington should be separate entities. In 1895, Congress legally ended Georgetown's status as a separate city by merging it with the City of Washington, yet this act said nothing about the County of Washington. Technically, this Maryland-ceded portion of the District of Columbia is still a part of that namesake even though it operates as a separate identity. The slip-up, moreover, has never been corrected.

So, today, a resident of the District of Columbia may be living either in the old County of Washington or in the merged section made up of L'Enfant's City of Washington and of Georgetown. Washington, D.C., however, is a city in name only - a mapmaker's designation and the established pseudonym for the District of Columbia.
It's just a name. :D
[edited to avoid more confusion]

The Supreme Canuck
2004-Dec-23, 12:35 AM
So they just pulled the name "District of Colombia" out of their hats. Typical. I've been thinking there was a significance to it for years. #-o

Fortis
2004-Dec-23, 03:55 AM
One explanation that I heard is that the status of DC within the US is similar to the status of Puerto Rico. Then again, within the UK (or strictly speaking not ;) ) we have the Channel Islands who I believe don't owe allegiance to Elizabeth as the Queen, but as the Duke of Normandy, which always struck me as a bit weird. :)

Quick quiz on the US states.
1) Which state is most Southerly?
2) Which state is most Northerly?
3) Which state is most Westerly?
4) Which state is most Easterly?
:)

EpsilonIndi
2004-Dec-23, 04:00 AM
1) Hawai'i
2) Alaska
3) Alaska
4) Alaska

paulie jay
2004-Dec-23, 04:43 AM
In Australia we have a similar situation with our captial, Canberra. It lies in the ACT (Australian Captial Territory) which is a smallish section of New South Wales though separate from it. As it falls under Federal law it differs significantly form the states which have their own laws regarding certain things (pronography, marijuana, fireworks to name three random examples).

The Supreme Canuck
2004-Dec-23, 05:34 AM
Hey, I just realised that we have a National Capital Region! It encompases Ottawa (in Ontario) and Gatineau (in Quebec) and has no real meaning or use at all. Except to stop buskers from busking without a permit.

No joke.

Doe, John
2004-Dec-23, 05:54 AM
Buskers?? What is busking? :-?

The Supreme Canuck
2004-Dec-23, 06:20 AM
Street performers. Sorry.

The NCC also won't allow dogs to be within a certain distance of the Ottawa River. I think it's 10 feet. Don't ask why they don't use metric...

SeanF
2004-Dec-23, 02:46 PM
But shouldn't the residents of D.C. have some say in federal matters, other than by the election of the president? They're affected by federal laws, so why shouldn't they have some say in those?
They can. All they have to do is move to one of the states! :D

But seriously, it's just one of those things that comes with living in the nation's capital. You're simply not a state.


So they just pulled the name "District of Colombia" out of their hats. Typical. I've been thinking there was a significance to it for years. #-o
Well, I'm pretty sure it was named after Christopher Columbus.

teddyv
2004-Dec-23, 03:25 PM
Hey, I just realised that we have a National Capital Region! It encompases Ottawa (in Ontario) and Gatineau (in Quebec) and has no real meaning or use at all. Except to stop buskers from busking without a permit.

No joke.

Actually, the National Capital Region gets a huge budget every year to make sure the area looks pretty. I'd probably be scared to see the size of the bureaucracy needed to run it. I don't recall the budget amount but it would make most of the provinces weep.

Jim
2004-Dec-23, 05:28 PM
Well, I'm pretty sure it was named after Christopher Columbus.

Sort of. When the US was still the 13 (un-united) colonies, the colonials coined a name for the entire collection, Columba, the feminine form of Columbus. That was altered to Columbia and became used widely as a name for the Colonies, and later as a nickname for the US.

The Supreme Canuck
2004-Dec-23, 07:21 PM
Hey, I just realised that we have a National Capital Region! It encompases Ottawa (in Ontario) and Gatineau (in Quebec) and has no real meaning or use at all. Except to stop buskers from busking without a permit.

No joke.

Actually, the National Capital Region gets a huge budget every year to make sure the area looks pretty. I'd probably be scared to see the size of the bureaucracy needed to run it. I don't recall the budget amount but it would make most of the provinces weep.

Doesn't seem that way to someone living here. Boy, they are a nuisance!

PS: Thanks, Jim.

Fortis
2004-Dec-24, 03:42 AM
1) Hawai'i
2) Alaska
3) Alaska
4) Alaska
4/4 ! :)

Obviously Alaska is a very privileged place. :)

(The questions shared a similar sneaky aspect to the old trivial persuit question, "Which sea does the western end of the Panama canal open into?" Maybe there's room for a thread on tricky questions? :) )

Maksutov
2004-Dec-24, 03:54 AM
Street performers. Sorry.

The NCC also won't allow dogs to be within a certain distance of the Ottawa River. I think it's 10 feet. Don't ask why they don't use metric...
The use of "feet" allows the distance to be neatly converted to 2 1/2 dogs.

The Supreme Canuck
2004-Dec-24, 04:04 AM
Depends on what breed of dog. :wink:

Maksutov
2004-Dec-24, 05:01 AM
Depends on what breed of dog. :wink:
OK, no Samuel Johnson Terriers then.

A Thousand Pardons
2004-Dec-25, 04:49 AM
Maybe there's room for a thread on tricky questions?
Maybe three (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?p=311680#311680) or four. :)

HerrProfessorDoktor
2004-Dec-27, 10:54 AM
I grew up in the DC area and left around '95. I remember the local government was a complete joke in the 80s and early 90s. The high point was when Mayor Marion Barry was caught on camera being coerced into smoking crack cocaine by a prostitute/undercover cop, and was dragged out of the hotel room yelling "B---h set me up!"

Good times, good times.

Recently, Barry was elected to a seat on city council, right after he got out of prison. The argument I always heard in the 80s against giving DC statehood was that the local government was so dysfunctional it hadn't even come close to proving its ability to operate on a state level. I remember at the time they couldn't even collect the trash on time or safely process the sewage.

But, I've heard things have changed for the better over the past few years. Anyone have any info to back this up? I've been back in the area a few times since, but I haven't seen much more of the city than a tourist would.

Frankly, I've always seen the not fit to govern argument as a bit of a red herring. The issue to me will always be that Washington, D.C. contains over 500,000 U.S. citizens that do not receive the Constitutional privileges the residents of all other states enjoy. They are a federal reservation who can vote for president and their own comical local government and that's about it. Regardless of the good intentions of the founding fathers, I think their voices should at least be heard. It's not like their number is large enough to upset the balance of national opinion.

ZaphodBeeblebrox
2004-Dec-27, 11:50 AM
I grew up in the DC area and left around '95. I remember the local government was a complete joke in the 80s and early 90s. The high point was when Mayor Marion Barry was caught on camera being coerced into smoking crack cocaine by a prostitute/undercover cop, and was dragged out of the hotel room yelling "B---h set me up!"

Good times, good times.

Recently, Barry was elected to a seat on city council, right after he got out of prison. The argument I always heard in the 80s against giving DC statehood was that the local government was so dysfunctional it hadn't even come close to proving its ability to operate on a state level. I remember at the time they couldn't even collect the trash on time or safely process the sewage.

But, I've heard things have changed for the better over the past few years. Anyone have any info to back this up? I've been back in the area a few times since, but I haven't seen much more of the city than a tourist would.

Frankly, I've always seen the not fit to govern argument as a bit of a red herring. The issue to me will always be that Washington, D.C. contains over 500,000 U.S. citizens that do not receive the Constitutional privileges the residents of all other states enjoy. They are a federal reservation who can vote for president and their own comical local government and that's about it. Regardless of the good intentions of the founding fathers, I think their voices should at least be heard. It's not like their number is large enough to upset the balance of national opinion.

Therein, lies The Problem ...

Except in The House of Representatives, Size Does NOT Matter!

Do we Really Want, to Hand Out, Two Senators, to 500,000 Peoeple?

Candy
2004-Dec-27, 01:26 PM
Size Does NOT Matter!
Says who? :lol:
Totally taken out of context for my entertainment.

ZaphodBeeblebrox
2004-Dec-27, 01:36 PM
Size Does NOT Matter!
Says who? :lol:
Totally taken out of context for my entertainment.

C'Mon ....

It's ALL About, The Motion in The Ocean ...

Candy
2004-Dec-27, 01:45 PM
Size Does NOT Matter!
Says who? :lol:
Totally taken out of context for my entertainment.

C'Mon ....

It's ALL About, The Motion in The Ocean ...
Atlantic or Pacific? :lol:

ZaphodBeeblebrox
2004-Dec-27, 01:50 PM
Size Does NOT Matter!
Says who? :lol:
Totally taken out of context for my entertainment.

C'Mon ....

It's ALL About, The Motion in The Ocean ...
Atlantic or Pacific? :lol:

I'm NOT Picky ...

ALL of Them!

SeanF
2004-Dec-27, 02:23 PM
Regardless of the good intentions of the founding fathers, I think their voices should at least be heard. It's not like their number is large enough to upset the balance of national opinion.

Therein, lies The Problem ...

Except in The House of Representatives, Size Does NOT Matter!

Do we Really Want, to Hand Out, Two Senators, to 500,000 Peoeple?
Two Senators and a Representative. At only 500,000 people, they would, vote-for-vote, become the most powerful voters in the nation!

Swift
2004-Dec-27, 02:39 PM
Regardless of the good intentions of the founding fathers, I think their voices should at least be heard. It's not like their number is large enough to upset the balance of national opinion.

Therein, lies The Problem ...

Except in The House of Representatives, Size Does NOT Matter!

Do we Really Want, to Hand Out, Two Senators, to 500,000 Peoeple?
Two Senators and a Representative. At only 500,000 people, they would, vote-for-vote, become the most powerful voters in the nation!
Wyoming actually has fewer people (493,782 vs. 572,059 in DC) based on 2000 census data LINK (http://www.enchantedlearning.com/usa/states/population.shtml)

SeanF
2004-Dec-27, 03:55 PM
Regardless of the good intentions of the founding fathers, I think their voices should at least be heard. It's not like their number is large enough to upset the balance of national opinion.

Therein, lies The Problem ...

Except in The House of Representatives, Size Does NOT Matter!

Do we Really Want, to Hand Out, Two Senators, to 500,000 Peoeple?
Two Senators and a Representative. At only 500,000 people, they would, vote-for-vote, become the most powerful voters in the nation!
Wyoming actually has fewer people (493,782 vs. 572,059 in DC) based on 2000 census data LINK (http://www.enchantedlearning.com/usa/states/population.shtml)

#-o Sorry, my mistake.

Those pesky Wyoming voters!

ToSeek
2004-Dec-27, 09:10 PM
I grew up in the DC area and left around '95. I remember the local government was a complete joke in the 80s and early 90s. The high point was when Mayor Marion Barry was caught on camera being coerced into smoking crack cocaine by a prostitute/undercover cop, and was dragged out of the hotel room yelling "B---h set me up!"

Good times, good times.

Recently, Barry was elected to a seat on city council, right after he got out of prison.

It's worse than that - he was re-elected mayor in 1994, right after he got out of prison. He left politics in 1998 after Congress stripped the DC government of a lot of its power but was just last month re-elected to the city council.

Candy
2004-Dec-27, 09:22 PM
I grew up in the DC area and left around '95. I remember the local government was a complete joke in the 80s and early 90s. The high point was when Mayor Marion Barry was caught on camera being coerced into smoking crack cocaine by a prostitute/undercover cop, and was dragged out of the hotel room yelling "B---h set me up!"

Good times, good times.

Recently, Barry was elected to a seat on city council, right after he got out of prison.

It's worse than that - he was re-elected mayor in 1994, right after he got out of prison. He left politics in 1998 after Congress stripped the DC government of a lot of its power but was just last month re-elected to the city council.
He's very popular amongst the African American crowd. :-k

Isn't that the majority of DC? And no, I'm not being racist. I'm just thinking this is fact. 8-[

A Thousand Pardons
2004-Dec-27, 09:33 PM
#-o Sorry, my mistake.

Those pesky Wyoming voters!
Dick Cheney

ToSeek
2004-Dec-27, 09:42 PM
He's very popular amongst the African American crowd. :-k

Isn't that the majority of DC? And no, I'm not being racist. I'm just thinking this is fact. 8-[

Yes. DC is 60% black according to the 2000 census. (I would have thought it was even a higher percentage than that.)