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The Democratic States of Deseret
Motto: "Peace Through Faith"
Anthem: For the Strength of the Hills
|Capital||Great Salt Lake City|
|Largest city||Los Angeles|
|Ethnic groups |
|Government||Semi-Federal presidential social democracy|
|María Alejandra Lacasa|
|22 July 1847|
• Constitution ratified
|14 May 1848|
• Last state admitted
|13 February 1943|
• Last amendment ratified
|4 December 2022|
|597,851.35 sq mi (1,548,427.9 km2)|
• 2023 estimate
• 2020 census
|105.3/sq mi (40.7/km2)|
|GDP (PPP)||2023 estimate|
|$10.035 trillion (4th)|
• Per capita
|GDP (nominal)||2023 estimate|
|$12.544 trillion (4th)|
• Per capita
|Gini (2023)|| 0.14|
low · 1st
|HDI (2023)|| 0.992|
very high · 1st
|Currency||Deseret Dollar ($)|
Deseret, officially called the Democratic States of Deseret (DSD), is a country located in the western area of North America. It is comprised of 13 states and borders the United States of America to the north and east and Mexico to the south. Deseret has a population of 62 million, making it the third most populous country in North America. The capital of Great Salt Lake City was one of the first settlements founded in the Salt Lake Valley, while the most populous city of Los Angeles was one of the first settlements established within Deseret's current borders. Deseret is currently the only nation with a matriarchal society, with women holding political, social, and economic power.
Deseret has been inhabited by indigenous Americans for several millennia. The first European expeditions were done by the Spanish in the mid 16th century, while permanent Spanish settlements were established in modern-day Columbia, including Los Angeles (1781) and San Diego (1769). Amid intense religious persecution and government-sanctioned mob violence in the United States throughout the 1830s-40s, Latter-day Saints pioneers settled modern-day New Israel and Utah, branching out into California, Arizona, Ephraim, and Mojave. Spanish and Latter-day Saint influences contributed greatly to the general culture of Deseret throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries, although the nation has since become more diverse and secular.
Deseret experienced an economic and social shift in the 1910s and 20s towards socialism and social acceptance. These, combined with already existing and further religious influence, have led to extremely high levels of state ownership and involvement in the economy and personal lives as the government seeks to keep people equal and accepting of one another. Deseret has the highest level of income equality in the world and one of the highest standards of living.
Deseret has had extraordinary population growth throughout its history, thanks to high immigration rates in the west during the California Gold Rush from 1848-1855, immigration due to the Latter-day Saint community throughout the country, and high birth rates. Although the birth rate has dropped in recent years, Deseret continues to attract large amounts of immigrants due to liberal social and economic policies, particularly from Latin America, Africa, and the United States. Thanks to immigration surges and government policy, Deseret has become one of the most socially-accepting and economically equal countries in the world. With growing secularism since the 1950s and more liberal politics and philosophy, the role of religion in society and government has been downgraded significantly. Despite its founding principles on conservative Christianity, Deseret is one of the most secular and progressive nations in the world, employing several left-wing ideas including socialism, reversed gender roles, and matriarchy.
The Deseret government is a federal social democracy, with three separate branches of government. It has had a unicameral national legislature since 2022, replacing the previous bicameral Congress. Many policy issues were once decentralized, with laws differing between states, but have recently become more centralized. Deseret ranks extremely high in international measures of quality of life, income equality, human rights, innovation, healthcare, and education, with one of the most liberal and robust social-safety and public-owned systems in the world, ranking 1st in terms of both HDI and the Gini coefficient. Deseret is one of the world's foremost leaders in science and healthcare innovation, especially engineering, agriculture, and biology, is one of the most environmentally-friendly nations in the world, and is at the forefront of new social, environmental, and economic research, with government policy seeking to establish social, racial, sexual, environmental, and economic justice and equity.
- 1 Etymology
- 2 History
- 2.1 Pre-columbian civilization (before 1492)
- 2.2 Early colonization and settlement (1492-1847)
- 2.3 Independence Era (1847-1865)
- 2.4 Enlightenment Era (1865-1939)
- 2.5 Cold War and Contemporary Era (1939-2000)
- 2.6 Progressive Era (2000-present)
- 3 Geography
- 4 Government and politics
- 5 Economy
- 6 Demographics
- 7 Culture and society
The word Deseret (// (listen)) is derived from the Book of Mormon in Ether 2:3, from the Jaredite language meaning "honeybee." Honeybees are a symbol of industry and community, representing hard work and communalism. From 1848 to 1983 the term "Theodemocratic" was used, being replaced by "Democratic." Joseph Smith first coined the term "theodemocracy," which is a democratic or republican form of government where the ultimate authority is recognized as coming from God and where the people are given authority to rule in morality, justice, and righteousness. Latter-day Saints believe that after the Second Coming of Christ, a theodemocratic government will rule.
Several suggestions for naming the country were considered, although all serious contenders included the name 'Deseret.' These included the United States of Deseret, with inspiration taken directly from the United States of America, and the Theodemocracy of Deseret. However, in an effort to distinguish themselves from the United States, while still paying homage to their American culture, several high-ranking officials within the Church merged both ideas into the Theodemocratic States of Deseret, which included both the federal (secular) and religious (theological) structures of the national government. The federal government has since clarified that there are no religious influences or traditions in government or public sectors, with the Democratic States of Deseret being the official name of the country since 1983.
Pre-columbian civilization (before 1492)
Book of Mormon people
Early colonization and settlement (1492-1847)
Latter-day Saint settlement
Independence Era (1847-1865)
Enlightenment Era (1865-1939)
Cold War and Contemporary Era (1939-2000)
Progressive Era (2000-present)
Government and politics
Minority rights and powers
Latter-day Saints were repeatedly threatened and harassed by often government-sanctioned mobs and militias, who drove the Church from Ohio, to Missouri, to Illinois, then outside the borders of the U.S. to the Great Salt Lake. These experiences, along with key elements of Joseph Smith's 1844 presidential platform, were the founding principles behind the strong laws in Deseret regarding minorities and are known as minority philosophy. Under this ideology, the federal government is granted broad powers on the basis of protecting minority rights: including compensation for grievances, overriding state laws and orders that are targeted or harmful toward specific groups, presidential control of state militias, and the power to set up exclusive zones and reservations for specific minority groups.
The executive is given the most power to deal with minority rights and protections. The president has the power to seize direct control over and disband state militia units, to override laws passed by state legislatures and executive orders from governors, to issue writs of habeas corpus, to set up temporary zones of refuge for specific groups under direct federal jurisdiction, and to convene the Citizens Assembly to pursue further action against all involved parties. These presidential powers are known as emergency powers and are given when the president decides that those powers must be used for the benefit of besieged groups under immediate harm. The legislature is given power to issue compensation for past grievances and to establish permanent federal districts for specific minority groups to live, under the direct control of the Assembly and the president. The legislature also becomes a court by having the power to summon parties participating in the infringement of minority rights and to charge them with insubordination, treason, insurrection, or defiance of constitutional law.
Businesses and workers rights
There are three overall types of businesses in Deseret classified as private enterprises (V-type), public enterprises (P-type), and state enterprises (S-type). Numbers identify the industry the enterprise is a part of or the goods/services provided. Private enterprises are started by private individuals with the goal of providing only non-essential goods and/or services—as all goods and services classified as essential are managed under S-type enterprises. V-type enterprises are worker owned, where employees can manage the business through direct voting (where votes are distributed equally or based on owned shares), voting for representation in a board of directors or another type of ownership, or through some other means. 58% of V-type enterprises operate under a system where employees each receive one vote and make most or all decisions in the business; 37% operate with employees voting for representation, who then make general business decisions, and 5% operate under some other form of employee ownership (such as employees having voting power to make some decisions, while more important decision making is left to the "representatives"). V-type enterprises usually offer higher prices than P and S-types (usually stemming from increased cost and a focus around non-essential "luxury" goods), but average higher employee satisfaction, lower turnover rates, and higher pay and benefits. V-types constitute 45% of businesses in Deseret.
S-type enterprises are owned and operated by the government without the employee ownership style of V-type enterprises, operating with a similar structure to traditional private corporations in capitalist countries while being entirely owned an operated by the government. S-type enterprises are primarily established to provide essential goods and services and to monopolize industries that are deemed high-risk (such as nuclear energy and military equipment) or of great national important (such as agriculture). However, several S-type enterprises exist that provide non-essential, low-risk, low-importance goods or services, usually to serve as competition to V-type enterprises and to offer alternatives to the marketplace. S-types make up 43% of businesses in Deseret.
P-type enterprises are a mix of V and S-types, worker cooperatives with full or partial state ownership that serve as competition and alternatives to V-type enterprises, as a transition for businesses from V to S-type, as a type of business for those temporarily acquired by the government, and, most widely, serve to complete infrastructure projects. P-types are much rarer than V and S-type enterprises, accounting for only 12% of businesses, but constitute a majority of infrastructure businesses in the country at 62% (with S-types at 38%).
Deseret hosts the most extensive workers rights in the world, with the Workers Bill of Rights enshrining seven rights as amendments to the Constitution. The seven constitutional rights of workers in Deseret are: Adequate safety in the workplace, including safety from all types of strenuous and hazardous material and conditions with proper and extensive procedures, training, equipment, and regulation; a 6 hour day, 4 days a week, 40 weeks a year full-time work schedule with limits on overtime hours (no more than 9 total hours a day, 34 total hours a week); a minimum living wage and adequate increased pay for overtime and certain shifts and activities; adequate time off for holidays, the physical and mental health of workers and their families, vacationing, and personal time, as well as little to no restrictions on the access to such time off; adequate working hours, conditions, and compensation for those giving birth or adopting children; adequate compensation and preparation for the loss of employment, the access to resources to gain employment and retrain, and the ability to have all essential conditions met while unemployed; the right to form and enjoy membership in unions without barriers.
Basic living standards
The federal government seeks to provide people living within Deseret with basic living conditions, which includes free adequate access to essential nutrition, clean water, communication, healthcare, housing, security, and transportation. Currently, the government gives each adult $400, each minor 10-15 years $300, and each minor 0-9 years $250 per month to be spent on an approved list of foodstuffs that provide adequate nutrition, with changes to the allowance given on a case-by-case basis through an application process. An additional monthly alotment of $75 for non-foodstuffs is given for those from the ages of 0-4 years. All water, electrical, internet, and phone companies are publicly owned P or S-type enterprises, allowing water and electrical needs to be supplied for free.
In order to supply housing units for free, publicly-owned construction contractors choose plots of land, release all preliminary plans and information, construct the unit(s), and then hand control of the finished unit(s) to the Housing Bureau or the Bureau's regional administration. Residents fill out applications and request to live in the unit from the time all preliminary information is released to the time the Bureau closes the unit for applications, approximately 2-3 weeks after taking control of the finished unit, or until the maximum number of applications (which varies by unit and can range from as little as 5 to as many as 200 applicants depending on factors such as demand, location, population, and nearby completed or unfinished units) have been received. The review process for applications looks at an applicants previous and current residences, applications, occupations, salaries, reationships, family size, medical histories, age, gender, and personal reasons for applying for that specific unit and compares them with other applicants. Once an applicant is chosen all others are denied. No person or family can have more than 4 applications for housing units at the same time. When existing units are vacated, the Bureau inspect the unit and, if necessary, repairs and remodels the unit while taking in applications for the next occupant(s). While the Bureau maintains ownership of all housing units, occupants themselves are responsible for maintenance and repairs, either through themselves or various public or private businesses. Significant issues regarding electricty, internet, water and sewage, heating, and cooling are encouraged to be reported to the Bureau, which will usually resolve issues through local branches or nearby public (or if necessary private) businesses.
Minimum and living wages
Main page: Minimum wage in Deseret
The national minimum wage is set each year by the Federal Employment and Wage Office (FEWO) and is aimed at providing a living wage that allows for enough money to live comfortably to supply or suppliment any left over needs and wants after necessary taxes are taken out to provide for free services (food, water, housing, healthcare) FEWO adjusts the national minimum wage based on government expenditure, inflation, the cost of living, and current and predicted changes in wages.
The Census Bureau collects data and tabulated total population statistics every quarter, alongside its more in-depth decennial census. The Census Bureau reported an estimate of 64,012,407 inhabitants as of 1 April 2023. In 2023 the population has increased by about eight people per minute, or one every 15 seconds. In 2023, 31% of Deseretians age 16 and over were in a monogamous marriage, 5% were in a polygamous marriage, 38% were in a non-marital monogamous relationship, 2% were in a non-marital polygamous relationship, 4% were widowed, 3% were divorced, and 17% had never been in or were formally in a marital or non-marital relationship. The total fertility rate is currently 1.86 children per woman. 16% of children live in single-parent homes.
Deseret is incredibly diverse, with dozens of ancestry groups with over 1 million members. White Deseretians with ancestry from Europe, the Middle East, or North Africa, form the largest racial and ethnic group at 42.41% of the population. Hispanic and Latinx Deseretians form the second-largest group at 21.68% of the population. Africans constitute the nation's third-largest ancestry group at 9.09% of the population. Asians are the fourth-largest group at 7.27% of the population, Native Americans are the fifth-largest, composing 3.78% of the population, and Pacific Islanders account for 2.06% of the total population. 8.48% of Deseretians were two or more races and 5.23% were another race.
A variety of languages are spoken in Deseret, with English being the most spoken first language, followed by Spanish, both of which are official languages. English and Spanish are both regularly taught and used interchangeably in schools, with teachers required to be bilingual in both, leading to high bilingual rates. Classes in other languages, such as Chinese, Arabic, German, and Polynesian languages, are required in high school. Approximately 38 million people speak primarily English at home and 11 million speak primarily Spanish. 98% of the population are at least bilingual, 91% know at least three languages, 68% know at least four or more languages, and 31% know at least five or more languages; the most known secondary languages are Spanish, English, Mandarin, and Arabic; tertiary languages are Chinese (known by 22% of tertiary speakers), Arabic (20%), Spanish (18%), English (18%), and French (12%); fourth-languages are Arabic (20%), Japanese (17%), French (13%), Hawaiian (10%), Vietnamese (8%), German (8%), and Spanish (8%). Fifth languages are Japanese (20%), French (12%), Hawaiian (12%), German (10%), Vietnamese (8%), and Arabic (7%).
Spanish is spoken more than English in five states: Arizona, Baja California, California, Mojave, and Sonora. Three states have official languages other than English and Spanish: Columbia (Mandarin), New Israel (Arabic), and South Madison (Japanese, Vietnamese, Arabic, and Mandarin). California has the most diverse language usage, while Utah has the least diverse. All laws and other public records are published in 36 languages including English, Spanish, Arabic, Mandarin, Japanese, Vietnamese, Russian, German, French, Norwegian, and several Polynesian languages.
While initially rooted in Christian tradition and history, Deseret has become more religiously diverse, neutral, and secular. A fifth of Deseretians currently identify as Christian, while roughly two-thirds identify as non-religious or atheist. Less than a third of the population professes a belief in a higher power. The increase in atheism is primarily due to increased immigration, more liberal and secular social policies, and the general trend toward irreligion in Western countries. Since 2020, Christian churches have lost a combined 1.3 million adherents, with most emigrating out of Deseret or becoming irreligious.
Latter-day Saint and general Christian influence was strong in the 19th and early 20th centuries, contributing to public policy and the general culture. Since then, however, religious neutrality and irreligion have taken precedence in policymaking and society. In 2020, only about 18% of residents described themselves as being "very active" in religious activities, while 13% attended weekly religious services. The most active religious groups are Latter-day Saints, Muslims, Jews, and some Protestant Christian groups. The single largest denomination is the United Methodist Church (3.4 million), followed by the Seventh-day Adventist Church (2 million), and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (1.9 million).
Of the over 16.4 million self-identified religious Deseretians, 34% believe in a female deity or deities, while 48% believe in a genderless, genderfluid, or bigender deity or deities. This includes 21% of Christians, who view their deity as feminine, and 65% who view their deity as being genderless, genderfuild, or bigender.
As of the 2020 decennial census members of the LGBTQIA+ Community comprised 15.42% of the population. It is estimated that as of 1 January 2023, the LGBTQIA+ Community comprised 25.6% of the population, or 16,119,686 individuals. This dramatic increase in the LGBTQIA+ population is the result of more people coming out and increased immigration; which are both primarily the result of two reasons:
First, the strong public acceptance of the LGBTQIA+ Community. A recent poll by the Census Bureau found that, in 2022, 92% of the population supported same-sex marriage, while 87% held a favorable view of the LGBTQIA+ Community overall. As society has moved more toward total acceptance and inclusion of the LGBTQIA+ Community, more people have felt comfortable publicly and privately expressing themselves and identifying as LGBTQIA+. In past years, such as the recent decennial census, many who identified as LGBTQIA+ felt afraid or threatened of making known, even in anonymous surveys, their identity.
Second, constitutionally protected rights including same-sex marriage, gender/sex-transitioning, and other LGBTQIA+ rights have meant that LGBTQIA+ individuals have had greater ease and comfort in making known their identity and in making their own private choices. Strong legal protections have, much like public acceptance, led to more LGBTQIA+ individuals expressing themselves and making known their identity and have led to the immigration of LGBTQIA+ individuals.
Main page: Education in Deseret
All education is public and funded and operated by the federal government. Residents are required to attend 12 years of primary education from ages 4-16 (1-12), with universal preschool and childcare available for ages 0-3. School types are broken down into elementary (1-4), junior high (5-8), and high schools (9-12), with classes designated as freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors. Of residents 16 and older, 98.6% have at least a high school diploma, 97.5% attended at least 2 years of college, university, or trade school, 94.1% have at least a bachelor's degree, and 80.7% have earned graduate degrees.
Culture and society
Religion and liberalism
Deseret balanced religion (traditionally viewed as conservative) with progressive social and economic policies in the 19th century. This was usually done by putting provisions in more-liberal laws that would respect religious freedom and conservative ideas. More recently, however, the government has taken a more active approach to getting religions to conform to more progressive ideology. Since 2021, the license to operate a church in Deseret was amended to include provisions that the church must follow government policy, including positions such as same-sex marriage, female ordination, and abortion. In 2022, 87% of the public believed religions and churches should at least follow progressive ideas, 82% believed that churches should at least conform to government policy, and 72% supported religious organizations being forced to comply with government policy.
Deseret has embraced more progressive and public forms and displays of sexuality since the turn of the mid 20th century, with focus being on sexual liberation and normalization. Pornography has become socially acceptable and commonplace, while regulation keeps the industry free of minors, sex trafficking, and rape, and out of the hands of minors without parental consent. Sexually-explicit content in movies, shows, games, and advertising has become normal across the nation, especially in more urban areas, while public nudity (which is heavily regulated and restricted) has increased in certain allowed areas. Mandatory sex education is taught in schools while contraceptives and birth control (such as condoms and abortion pills) are provided for free at most public institutions such as healthcare centers, parks, schools, and specialized birth control stations and centers.
The age of consent and marital ages are tied to the age of adulthood, which is currently 16. Rape is heavily punished, with Deseret maintaining one of the lowest rape rates in the world. Marriage rates have decreased while cohabitation and living alone have become commonplace. Sexual relations outside of marriage (including both in and out of relationships) are socially accepted and commonplace; extramarital affairs are still frowned upon, but have increased slightly among less-religious Deseretians.
Visual arts, literature and media
Sports and contests
The most popular spectator sports are baseball, basketball, soccer, volleyball and ice hockey. The market for professional sports in Deseret is small, especially when compared to the United States, but still maintains widespread popularity. Large-scale popular professional sports include soccer, volleyball, and baseball. The Deseret Soccer Association, National Women's Volleyball League, the National Basketball League, and the Deseret Baseball League brought in $18.4 billion in 2020. Soccer is the highest-attended sport in the country, followed by baseball, basketball, and volleyball. The most popular individual sports include golf and tennis.
Deseret has hosted four Olympic Games and is scheduled to host the 2030 Winter Olympics in Great Salt Lake City. The 1964 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles were the first to be held in the country and the 2006 Winter Olympics in Great Salt Lake City were the most recently held. Deseret has hosted the FIFA World Cup twice, first in 1982 and most recently in 2018, and the FIFA Women's World Cup two times in 1995 and 2007, and will host the 2027 World Cup.