Sunday, November 11, 2012

This is What Happens When You Don't Teach Shapes in Kindergarten

 Hello friend, let's take a journey through the newly designed districts of Pennsylvania, the Keystone State.  I've decided to choose the most aesthetically and geometrically offensive districts for our little tour.

Starting West, let us begin with PA-12, the former home of Rep. Mark Critz (D) and soon-to-be home of Rep. Keith Rothfus (R).

PA's 12th congressional district is the pale yellow part of this map.  (Here's another hint for finding it:  It's marked with a 12).

Ultimate conclusion: A bird with a long, narrow neck sticking out of a nest with an unusually flat/sharp top

"But PA's 12th just looks so strange because it was just gerrymandered now," you might think.  You are wrong.  It is arguable that PA's 12th is less aesthetically offensive than it had been.

File:Pa12 109.gif

The district, with its new design, has moved slightly to the north and is, in fact, more compact.  When I tried to come up with a clever idea for what the old PA-12 resembled, I originally gave up.  But then I came to the conclusion that, if you tilt your head a bit to the left, PA-12 resembles a woman playing a grand piano standing up near the edge of a stage.  It's a stretch, but I think it will work.

Let's continue our journey through the beautiful PA's 7th, now home to Republican Rep. Pat Meehan. When I first saw PA-7, I could tell that it was awkwardly designed.  And then I noticed the piece of PA-7 in Montgomery County that falls between Allyson Schwartz's and Mike Fitzpatrick's district that makes PA-7 really push the definition of "contiguity."

It took me a little while to figure out what this travesty of a district resembles.

Ultimate conclusion: A woman with a strange hairstyle wearing rubber gloves while trying to clean up the body of a decapitated monkey

Oh, look, the 70+% African American city of Chester is conveniently not in the Republican rep's district and awkwardly linked up to Bob Brady's district in Philadelphia (which, of course, is a mess in its own right.)

Because of the cluster that is PA-7, PA-6, its neighbor to the North (home to Republican Rep. Jim Gerlach) is also a bright and shiny example of the failure of our elementary schools to teach drawing and shapes.

If you turn PA-6 upside down (bear with me here), then it looks like a large-nosed witch clenching one hand in a fist and extending her other arm, cloaked in the sleeve of her loose robe.

Moving up north a bit to PA-17, we find what is either a boat with a mini-stage on which a couple is dancing (the male dancer lifting up his female partner ballet-style) or a sleeping camel with several layers of blankets on its lower back and a feathered headpiece.

You can check out the rest of the geometric glory of the Keystone State here.

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