People fleeing super-liberal state get begged not to insult it as they depart

 January 23, 2024

This story was originally published by the WND News Center.

As a mass exodus continues from California, an editor at the Los Angeles Times is begging those departing not to criticize the Golden State as they leave.

"To the people leaving California: May the road rise to meet you as you seek better lives in new places. Now, can you please extend some goodwill to those of us who remain?" wrote letters editor Paul Thornton in a commentary titled: "If you want to leave, fine. But don't insult California on the way out."

"Several friends and members of my extended family have moved out of this state, so I can understand the factors that drive such decisions. But reasons to leave don't explain the impulse to insult California on the way out."

Thornton admitted the numbers of folks exiting the region are simply staggering.

"More than 800,000 Californians moved away in 2022, and many thousands more left last year," he explained. "Often, the departees, cash in hand from the sale of their $1-million bungalows, feel the need to express disdain for their home state, and even some anger too."

"The urge to rationalize a difficult decision can be powerful, and trading an overpriced 900-square-foot home in L.A. for a mansion in Texas often comes with a big catch: You need to stay indoors half the year and make good use of all that extra, climate-controlled space.

"As we watch you – our aging parents, our friends, our neighbors with kids the same age – eye Idaho and Nevada for home listings, we hear the digs against California. Some are subtle, and some less so."

Thornton recalled a personal relative last year who, "regaling me with tales of the charming small town he found several states away, said that his neighbors admonished him to not 'bring those weird California ways' to his new home."

And which ways would those be? I have a hunch it isn't California's low property tax rate and zoning rules that conspire to push up home values so homeowners can sell their houses for a huge profit.

Perhaps it's our embrace of LGBTQ+ Californians. Or it's our liberal politics, with the state Republican Party shrunk to irrelevance after its vicious attempt in 1994 to marginalize immigrants with Proposition 187.

Perhaps I'm sensitive because California – and especially Los Angeles – used to be the place people would come to. And plenty still moves here, especially immigrants. I come from an immigrant family blessed by the working-class riches our state once offered.

But it doesn't work out for everyone, and I've seen people decide to leave without verbally trashing the place. ...

California is big, powerful, and therefore tempting to disparage. We have 39 million people, Hollywood and Shohei Ohtani. This state is a haven for reproductive and LGBTQ+ rights, but income disparity and the housing crunch are critical problems we have to fix for progressive ideals to match the reality on the ground.

If you must leave California for Texas, Arizona, New England, or anywhere else, don't be a person who trash-talks the home of 39 million people. You don't hear many new Californians (they exist!) bash Nebraska or Minnesota.

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