"...In some ways, Vermont is a lot like Texas: Both were once independent republics; each, with considerable justification, considers itself unique. Both have occasionally sported license plates warning, "Don't mess with us!" But while Texas seems to cling to the cowboy values of the 19th century, Vermont, with about two percent of Texas' population, seems to be venturing into the unknown territory of the 21st.
It's the healthiest state in the Union, and the best educated. It's the least religious, probably because of the unpredictability of its climate. It has one of the lowest percentages of uninsured citizens. Other states in my experience - mostly to the east of us - seem to regard new ideas with hostility: If it were a good idea, we'd've had it 200 years ago. Vermonters seem to say, "Well, it sounds a little odd. But let's try it; doesn't work out, we can always repeal it." And with only about 600,000 people (and shrinking), we can! The current debate over the Death With Dignity bill is a perfect example........"