If you were Belgian, it would probably scare you (or make you happy, one of the two) to turn on the TV and hear that your country no longer existed.
Belgian public broadcaster RTBF ran an on-air spoof for almost two hours, claiming that Flanders had declared independence. Their reason, they said: to provoke debate about the current state of the nation's affairs.
Belgium is, kind of, an example of successful federalism--it's a federal state with six federal entities, three of them regions and three of them cultural communities, which overlap. "Kind of" successful because the system keeps changing to accommodate additional demands, and Flemish nationalists in particular (Vlaams Belang) continue to perform well at elections. When I studied in Granada, Spain, my European politics professor spent two classes going over just the Belgian federal system. In part this emphasis was because most of my classmates were (1) not polisci majors and (2) didn't speak Spanish as well as I did, but I did learn a decent amount about how Belgium is ridiculously complex.
While we in the U.S. might immediately know that a news report that the South had seceded again was fiction, in Belgium, you can't be sure--hence, the alarm and controversy surrounding the broadcast decision.