It’s no secret that I am a Southerner and proud of it. I have spent all of my life from Virginia to South Carolina, to Georgia and Florida, and now Louisiana. I’ve been to Seattle, Portland, New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco and other liberal havens, but the places that sadly hang onto the Stars and Bars and the ghosts of Jim Crow are also the same places I’ve called home.
I could have escaped these places, yet on every attempt to leave, I ended up being called back home. As much as I love progressive politics and the city culture, it seems that the Red States are where I need to be.
Now I have to clear the air on something. There are a ton of us down here in the Bible Belt who don’t long for the days prior to segregation and the Civil Rights Act. We’re not always your idea of what a liberal/progressive should be, but we are still in the trenches in conservative country, desperately fighting to turn these Red States a little more blue. We may prefer canned beer to bottles of wine, and fried chicken over tofu, but that doesn’t make us any less of a liberal or progressive.
Despite overwhelming odds and hopelessly gerrymandered districts, we showed up at the polls regardless. That packed Senate chamber that cheered on Wendy Davis’ filibuster? That happened in one of the strongholds of the GOP — Texas.
Here’s the one thing I just don’t get — the seemingly constant need by a lot of self-proclaimed liberals to put down people they don’t see as ideologically or culturally equal to them. It’s as if they have to flout their liberal credentials every single chance they get and it’s not helpful at all. Look, I get it. You live in a bastion of liberalism, eat only locally-sourced organic vegetables and only use public transportation. Hey, that’s cool, but how does that make you superior to those of us who do manual labor for a living and don’t have multiple liberal arts degrees? You know, the people you like to refer to as “trailer park rednecks” even as you type up your newest blog about intolerance in your favorite punching bag, the South?
You’re not helping the cause, you’re hurting it. There’s a lot of people in the center and moderate right who would likely vote with us more often if they didn’t feel like they were constantly being mocked and judged. We get it, there’s a lot of things that need changing down here and we’re working on it. What are you doing to help?
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