Here, America. Have some context. This is more what you look like. Not that sea of red with little blue islands I’ve seen making the rounds. Not a checkered map of red and blue states.
There is not a state in this country that isn’t purple.
I’ve spent the last two days going county by county through this week’s election data. I’ve looked every county in this country in the face (except you, Alaska, because you are so huge that apparently the only data available is just you in all your enormous glory — but hey, I used to live in you, and you’re lovely and majestic).
Most people if you asked them would say that the “reddest” chunk of this country is the deep South. But look at Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, Georgia, South Carolina. You can see where the brightest pink is (there is no straight red on this map), and that’s from the Texas panhandle up into the Dakotas. (Those blue dots you see in the Dakotas? Those are the Lakota and Standing Rock reservations.)
This country is divided like the grains of sand on the beach are divided. Sure, some might be remnants of shells and others of quartz and others of garnet and others of slate but good luck to anybody trying to claim one of those bits doesn’t exist in any given handful.
Purple maps like this have been done before, but I wanted one for this year.
Context is important, America.
Here’s some more:
A couple notes.
1. Certain states, like Utah and Washington, haven’t yet finalised their data, so I just went with what I had. Which was from here: http://www.politico.com/2016-election/results/map/president
2. Compare South Carolina to New York. Just do it.
3. Read that Washington Post link. Population density is a thing.
4. I’m not a PhotoShop wizard. Just a 32-year-old (almost! 18 November!) author who gets cranky when people erase context from things. I also really do not like binaries, especially when it comes to people and communities. And I’m someone who gets a teensy bit delighted when the US map becoming a giant version of the bi flag is a by-product (heeeeyyyyyyy) of doing something important.
5. All I want for my birthday is for America to develop some damn empathy, specifically for communities who have spent way too much time trying to just be seen as human.
6. Someone on Twitter noted that this doesn’t include turnout, and they’re right. Half of eligible voters didn’t vote (or couldn’t due to voter suppression).
7. Someone else asked for a map that is not colour dependent for those with colour deficiencies. Somebody altered it if you need that.
8. Somebody asked me to do X, Y, Z other maps — as I mentioned, I’m not great at PhotoShop and could only do this because the data was easily accessible and I had the time. It took me all weekend to do this one. I’ve got a book out tomorrow (this one) and two jobs to work, so this is likely all I’ll be able to do on this front for now.
9. There’s a lot to unpack here. This is merely *one* other angle to look at, and some context. The links provided give more. Nowhere has the entirety of America in one image.
10. That’s all, Purple Statesers. Be good to one another. Stand up against racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism. As that old adage goes, be careful about who you hate. They might be somebody you love.
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