I grew up in Lexington, and as an adult relocated to Los Angeles. My parents send me occasional tidbits from the Herald-Leader, which is how I came to read the letter that closed with, “If I had my way, I would kick California out of the union, which would also get rid of half of the illegal immigrants in this country and all of the Hollywood liberals.”
California’s economy dwarfs those of all other states, and that engine drives the country forward. Its economy is the sixth largest in the world. California produced $2.46 trillion of economic output in 2015, more than the GDP of France at $2.42 trillion in the same year. We did so with a workforce of 19 million people, compared to the French workforce of 25 million.
Yes, some of those workers are illegal immigrants, and it turns out they work very hard for their families and their adoptive country. Kentucky’s economic output in 2015 was $195 million, generously rounded up, similar to that of Bangladesh.
We are not better or more important than Kentuckians, but Californians rightly deserve a strong political voice, equal in size to our gifts to the nation. Anyone who thinks we will be silent in the Trump era is sorely mistaken.