It’s no secret that gerrymandering (the art of carving up districts to give one party an advantage) is a time-honored tradition in Illinois and an increasingly widespread issue around the country. The ability to carve out ‘safe’ districts leads to bizarrely-shaped area like Illinois’ fourth district, which covers parts of Chicago’s West Side, a narrow strip along 294, then snakes back east to encapsulate parts of Berwyn, Brookfield and Cicero.
To drive the point home, Slate has created an interactive puzzle that gives users the chance to reassemble gerrymandered districts in six states. It’s an exercise in frustration, a civic-minded Tetris that will leave you feeling just a little bit less optimistic about the future. Good luck!