U.S. ‘Divorce Agreement’ Letter

A letter that has been passed around since at least 2009 has questionable origins.

  • Published
Image via U.S. Army


A law student named John J. Wall penned a "divorce letter" to the U.S.
Dear American liberals, leftists, social progressives, socialists, Marxists, Obama supporters, et al: We have stuck together since the late 1950's, but the whole of this latest election process has made me realize that I want a divorce. I know we tolerated each other for many years for the sake of future generations, but sadly, this relationship has run its course. Our two ideological sides of America cannot and will not ever agree on what is right, so let's just end it on friendly terms. We can smile, slate it up to irreconcilable differences, and go on our own ways. Here is a model dissolution agreement: Our two groups can equitably divide up the country by landmass each taking a portion. That will be the difficult part, but I am sure our two sides can come to a friendly agreement. After that it should be relatively easy! Our respective representatives can effortlessly divide other assets since both sides have such distinct and disparate tastes. We don't like redistributive taxes so you can keep them. You are welcome to the liberal judges and the ACLU. Since you hate guns and war, we'll take our firearms, the cops, the NRA and the military. You can keep Oprah, Michael Moore, and Rosie O'Donnell. We'll keep the capitalism, greedy corporations, pharmaceutical companies, Wal-Mart, and Wall Street. You can have your beloved homeless, homeboys, hippies, and illegal aliens. We'll keep the hot Alaskan hockey moms, greedy CEO's, and rednecks. We'll keep the Bibles and give you NBC and Hollywood . You can make nice with Iran , Palestine , and France and we'll retain the right t o invade and hammer places that threaten us. You can have the peaceniks and war protestors. When our allies or way of life are under assault, we'll provide them job security. We'll keep our Judeo-Christian Values. You are welcome to Islam, Scientology, Humanism, and Shirley McClain. You can have the U.N. But we will no longer be paying the bill. We'll keep the SUV's, pickup trucks, and oversized luxury cars. You can take every Subaru station wagon you can find. You can give everyone healthcare, if you can find any practicing doctors (that is practicing, Howard Dean) who will follow to your turf (sic). We'll continue to believe healthcare is a luxury and not a right. We'll keep The Battle Hymn of the Republic and The National Anthem. I'm sure you'll be happy to substitute Imagine, I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing, Kum Ba Ya or We Are the World. We'll practice trickle down economics and you can give trickle up poverty its best shot. Since it often so offends you we'll keep our History, our Name, and our Flag. Would you agree to this? If so please pass it along to other likeminded patriots and if you do not agree just hit delete and hang on. In the spirit of friendly parting, I'll bet you ANWAR on who will need whose help in 15 years. Sincerely, John J. Wall Law Student and an American P.S. Please take Barbra Streisand too.
Collected via Facebook, October 2016



In February 2009, a “Minuteman message board” operated by the right-wing website Renew America published what it called a “Letter from a Law Student” proposing a “model dissolution agreement” between — as it said — “American liberals, leftists, social progressives, socialists, Marxists, Obama supporters” and the rest of the country.

The “agreement” was also partially reposted at the Patriot Action Network, dated 30 November 1999 (which, of course, predates President Barack Obama’s election by nine years). There is also a version posted on Scribd calling Wall’s proposal a “separation proposal letter.” A month after its 2009 appearance, conservative radio host Neal Boortz featured Wall’s letter on his web site, but the end of the op-ed was changed to: “You can also have Barbara Streisand and Jane Fonda.”

The letter has also generated attention from liberal websites: In June 2009, Democratic Underground featured it in a thread, calling it a “piece of shit.”  A year later, liberal blogger Rich Merritt posted what he called a “Patriotic Rebuttal” to the piece, which reads in part:

Listen, you are the one who married up, my dear. We are California, the Pacific Northwest, Hawai’i, most of the Midwest, Florida, the Mid-Atlantic and New England. Without us you are Mexico’s ugly step-sister to the north. Most of what we’ve done over the course of our 234-year marriage has been with your best interests in mind even when you literally rebelled. You tried to divorce us once before but we fought you and won. Why? Because despite all your many flaws, we still love you and want you to be better than you are. 

In 2011, the letter reappeared, this time with even more added to the “P.S.” section:

P.S.: Also, please take Ted Turner, Sean Penn, Martin Sheen, Barbra Steisand, and Jane Fonda with you.

P.S.S.: And you won’t have to “Press 1 for English” when you call our country.

Forward this every time you get it! Let’s keep this going; maybe some of it will start sinking in!

If you can’t stand behind our Military, Please feel free to stand in front of them!

In the years since, the op-ed has been circulated via message boards, e-mail, and in other nooks and crannies on the Internet (it surfaced on Reddit in June 2013), but no version of the piece has never been definitively tied to a law student named John J. Wall — or any other identifiable person.