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What State Do You Belong In?
by David Copper

There are fifty states in the U.S. of A., drawn together out of thirteen original colonies. States have been added throughout the life of the U.S. after the colonies came together, from early adopters such as Vermont in 1791 to relatively early arrivals like Arkansas in 1836, later arrivals such as Idaho in 1890, and true latecomers Alaska and Hawaii, both in 1959.

The brilliance of the Constitution is that the fifty states are part of one united whole, but they each retain their own government and character within the federal structure. This enables them to be the celebrated "laboratories of democracy," each one trying out different ways to bring prosperity and freedom to their citizens and then perhaps sharing the best ideas with the rest. It also means that - subject to guarantees about certain basic human and civil rights, issues like the highway system or the military where interstate cooperation is inherently required, and issues where the federal government has a mandate or broad agreement from the states (which issues fall into this bracket being a controversial topic, to be sure) - states don't tell each other how to be, which enables each one to have a different character and contribute to the whole in its own unique way.

Whatever you're like, there's a state that suits you. Alabama is more insular, conservative and faith-oriented, while Wyoming is highly individualist and retains its frontier mentality. California is noted for enterprise, diversity and progressive ideas, while Connecticut is capitalistic, wealthy and just a little preppy. Each state has a personality - and one of them is right for you. Let's see which one!

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