I think it is because we take the environment seriously. Granted, politics is screwing rotten as usual and our moral has hit rock bottom (Name the song and group please. If you don’t know it was “Stand or Fall” by the Fixx).
But back to the environment. We have one of the bigger open space initiatives in the country with thousands of acres protected from development. And we even have Environmental Police. I kid you not, they have full jurisdiction when it comes to wooded areas, waterways, etc.
I remember the time I was with my buddy and he tried to put his boat with the 135HP motor in the water where the limit was 15HP. The DEM Police showed up and to this day my friend has a record.
The fact that we have birds of prey nesting in Providence is amazing. For many years the rivers that make up the Providence River (Woonasquatucket and Moshasuck) were disgusting. There are still spots that need cleanup but it is nowhere near as bad as it once was. For one, the river was decked over for many years. It’s only in the last 15 years or so that it hasn’t been covered over.
Another thing is our respect for personal liberties. RI is one of the only states in which roadblocks for DUI are illegal. The .08 limit is ridiculous. It’s all because of FUD spread by MADD. We also have protections for gay people, but no civil marriage yet thanks to the Catholic Church.
Now if we could just clean up campaign finance it’d be utopia.