Reflections on America: Secession

by: cassandracarolina

Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 11:02:49 AM EST



Moose Photo from Wyoming Lately, there's been plenty of talk about secession.  Otherwise intelligent folks (bear with me; I'm giving them the benefit of the doubt) seem to feel that they can either petition for their state to secede from the United States, or - better yet - that they can somehow engineer the mass secession (involuntary) of all states that they don't like in one sweeping move.

Red states or Southern states, states inhabited by rednecks/racists/Christian fundamentalists/poor people/fat people/unemployed people/[insert derogatory southern stereotype here] getting on your nerves? Ditch 'em! Chances are their inhabitants are all "takers", living off government largesse, draining the country's coffers of resources that could be better spent elsewhere.  Why should the fine, upstanding, hardworking, taxpaying "real" Americans be subsidizing these folks? Get 'em outta here!

This sort of talk wouldn't surprise me here in Texas, where our witless governor likes to throw around the possibility of secession as part of his swaggery, been-out-in-the-sun-too-long cowboy schtick. It has about the same effect on his low-information-voter "base" as poking a stick into a fire ant nest: lots of insane running around and pain, followed by nothing useful. My usual response, screaming at the TV, is "FINE! How's about YOU secede and leave us the hell alone!!".  But... I digress.

Photo taken by cassandracarolina in 1973 in Yellowstone National Park

cassandracarolina :: Reflections on America: Secession
Where I don't expect to hear secessionist talk is on supposedly Progressive web sites. As some of you have seen, there has been a significant uptick in secessionist talk over at The Place That Shall Not Be Named, even from one of their front pagers.  More than a few people that I used to like and respect over there jumped on board with a hearty "oh, HELL yes" at the possibility of jettisoning those pesky Southern states when the prospect was dangled in front of them like the red meat it is. I was shocked. I was hurt. I was angry.

While I live in Texas at the moment, I generally self-identify as a New Englander. I lived in Massachusetts for 42 years, then 12 years in New Hampshire before moving to Texas in 2007 as a reluctant trailing spouse/good sport when my husband had to relocate for work. Next stop later this year: North Carolina.

I've had the phenomenal good fortune of spending time in 45 of the 50 United States in the course of family, college, business, and recreational travel. I love this country as much or more than anyone yammering on and on about "taking it back".  The only person who loves it more is my immigrant mom.

What I found in my travels was exactly what I expected: every state seemed to be inhabited by people just like me. People who wanted a decent job at a decent wage. People who wanted to own their own home, and maybe a little land. People who wanted the best for their kids. People who enjoyed the things I enjoyed, like gardening, playing with their dogs, going out for breakfast, spending time out on the boat, playing musical instruments, or watching a good movie. People who were content to mind their own business and live and let live.

So why, I wondered, were so many otherwise intelligent (yeah, I know; there I go again) folks willing to strip so many of these perfectly good people of their citizenship, casting them adrift in some cobbled-together geographic Gulag? Why would any group of "Americans" take it upon themselves to decide who's "in" and who's "out"? Why can't the folks salivating at the prospect of secession recognize that significant progress is underway in turning these Red States blue?  

Here in Texas, for instance, we have significant Blue zones already, and the ongoing efforts of hardworking Progressives coupled with our evolving demographics could enable us to become a 25-million-person swing state soon, and Blue state in the foreseeable future. How awesome would that be? Sadly, we don't get much help from the national Democratic party, as they'd rather spend their resources on races in other states. That doesn't keep them from raising massive amounts of money from Democratic donors here in the Lone Star State... and spending it anywhere but Texas.

We - well, most of us (I hope!) - don't embrace the idea of ethnic cleansing. That's dreadful, immoral, horrific. As the daughter of a Holocaust survivor, I've heard plenty on that subject. So what is it about "geographic cleansing" that attracts even a moment's genuine consideration from any Progressive? Or from any American?  

Growing up in Massachusetts, I learned a lot about the American Revolution. Every year, my dad and brother and I bundled up against the April cold and dampness in the pre-dawn hours to go watch the Battle Green re-enactment between the Redcoats and our wily Minutemen. In general though, I found history classes to be an incomprehensible blur of names and dates, advances and retreats, victories and defeats.

In my travels around this most excellent country, I yearned to learn more, to pick at the scab of my ignorance. I made it a point to visit some Civil War battlefields like Chancellorsville, where over 100,000 Americans lost their lives in just over 5 months. This is nearly twice the number of American casualties in the Vietnam War.

Whichever side of the Civil War people identify with (and whatever they feel about who "won"), I think that they'd agree that the toll in blood and treasure was beyond any rational comprehension.

I simply cannot imagine how anyone thinks we could rip the country apart again along similar lines with just a few strokes of a pen without similarly mortal wounds to generations of our people, our infrastructure, and entire economy, and our standing in the global community. We're tied together as a nation in so many ways that divorce is not an option.

Our highways, ports, railroads, airports, waterways, oil and gas pipelines, reservoirs, water supply lines, telecommunications systems, military installations, manufacturing plants, farms, ranches, mines, national parks, power plants, electric transmission lines, beaches, mountains, lakes, schools, colleges and universities, sports venues, cultural venues, hotels, restaurants, hospitals, research facilities, government offices, industrial parks, libraries, parks, civic centers, malls, and commercial businesses can't simply be uprooted and shuffled around like pieces on a chessboard as borders are redrawn.

Our people cannot be stripped of their citizenship if their state secedes (on its own or under duress), nor can they be forced to leave their state and migrate to another to retain their spot in America. That anyone in this country considers geographic cleansing a viable option is appalling to me. That any so-called Progressives consider it a viable - or even desirable option - is simply beyond my comprehension.

It's time to drive a stake through the heart of this misbegotten concept once and for all. It's time to roll up our sleeves and work together as a nation to lift everyone up rather than casting anyone out.  

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Tips for staying "united"... (2.00 / 27)
the best of "states".  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


My college English prof, (2.00 / 24)
a retired Lt Col. and former secretary to Alexander Haig, is a Civil War historian. He makes the point that the most important result of the Civil War is a change in semantics.

Prior to 1865, the usage was:

The United States are...

After 1865, the usage became:

The United States is...

And so it shall ever be.

John Askren - "Never get into a pissing match with a skunk."


[ Parent ]
Fascinating, Chris! (2.00 / 18)
Seriously... if people visit Civil War battlefields and really immerse themselves in what transpired, they would say NEVER AGAIN. Chancellorsville is a great place to start.

Beyond the human casualties there - which were epic - even the landscape suffered grievous harm, as trees up to 23 inches in diameter were cut down in the barrage of musket fire.


I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
for all the talk of texas secession (2.00 / 23)
this state, which relies heavily on military industry and has more military bases than most, couldn't make it one day without the USA.  all the secessionspeak is merely testosterone given a voice while bypassing the frontal lobes.  it's not feasible, it's a soundbyte, and it's stupid.

'nuff said from me on this matter.  

thanks for the diary!

Does the morgue wagon come with the job?


Thanks, LabWitch (2.00 / 22)
It's not just the Department of Defense... Texas has NASA, and facilities for the Departments of Energy, Agriculture, Interior, Homeland Security.

The Port of Houston plays a huge role in interstate commerce, we lead the nation in production of certain crops, we're key in petroleum (obviously) and manufacturing. Medical facilities - particularly in the Houston area - are world class (Gabby Giffords did her rehab here).

We're a fascinating multicultural mix with amazing restaurants, pretty good sports teams, generous political donors (for both parties), and surprising tolerance of our fellow people.

The truth is, the US would lose something without us as well.  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
exactly... i didn't specifically mention (2.00 / 19)
nasa as i really sort of count it with the other federal installations located here.  it has military associations.

i totally agree that texas secession would be a loss for both texas and the USA.

Does the morgue wagon come with the job?


[ Parent ]
And then there is the birding. That (2.00 / 4)
whole area around Aransas and Rockport is breathtaking.

[ Parent ]
Yes, Portlaw, even here in the suburban Houston area (2.00 / 5)
we see many amazing birds including herons, egrets, eagles, hawks, buzzards, and once some roseate spoonbills! Nearer to the Gulf there are pelicans and gulls, and at my backyard feeders I am currently feeding some goldfinches so they'll turn their nice gold color before heading north. The other usual suspects - cardinals, blue jays, sparrows, mockingbirds, and mourning doves - are also feeding. The highlight for me, though, are the hummingbirds who hang around here for months, sometimes sipping the nectar from the blooms on my porch plants.

There's no shortage of reptiles or amphibians, either.

Frog on Jasmine 09-26-07

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
Rosearte spoonbills??? I am soooooo jealous! eom (2.00 / 4)


[ Parent ]
Sam Houston himself got run out of the Governor's Mansion (2.00 / 19)
because he refused to go along with secession.

Beautiful parting words, as if he were speaking to the teabaggers of today, on refusing to take an oath to the Confederacy:

"Fellow-Citizens, in the name of your rights and liberties, which I believe have been trampled upon, I refuse to take this oath. In the name of the nationality of Texas, which has been betrayed by the Convention, I refuse to take this oath. In the name of the Constitution of Texas, I refuse to take this oath. In the name of my own conscience and manhood, which this Convention would degrade by dragging me before it, to pander to the malice of my enemies, I refuse to take this oath. I deny the power of this Convention to speak for Texas....I protest....against all the acts and doings of this convention and I declare them null and void."


[ Parent ]
Holy "woof!", batman! (2.00 / 16)
Give that man a cigar!

John Askren - "Never get into a pissing match with a skunk."

[ Parent ]
Amen, bill d... why can't we get politicians like that (2.00 / 17)
anymore? Sheesh. If we get the government we deserve, we must have done something really awful ;-)  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
yep, i remember old sam was (2.00 / 13)
held in disgrace by the teabaggers of yesteryear because he knew secession was not only a bad idea but a stupid one.  always liked old sam.  wish we had him or someone like him now.

the texas pols of today are embarrassing and that's the best thing i can say about them.

Does the morgue wagon come with the job?


[ Parent ]
Über fierce! (2.00 / 23)
There certainly are dystopian voices on both (all) sides calling for further retreat from each other.

Which is particularly strange, in a world that is ever more drawing together.

The country is not going to split apart, perioddone. What had been saturated strongholds in the past are in fact less-so with every passing year. Individuals have more complicated opion-sets, and geographies are more mixed than ever.

Having lived in the South several times, including the present, the oft-repeated meme of the Deep South as a Hotbed of Intolerance is one of those wedges that do not match current realities. Knoxville may vote very red on average, but colleges around the region and mobile families like ours represent a very cliche-resistant population.

In California's Bay Area this is also true. The worn-cliche of leftward extremism is not matched by the pointilistic reality on the ground.

The country is not only not falling apart, it is growing together.

John Askren - "Never get into a pissing match with a skunk."


Thanks, Chris - I agree with you (2.00 / 18)
Those who spew this "Hotbed of Intolerance" slur should hang out in Houston, where our openly lesbian mayor has been re-elected to a second term. I've never lived in a more demographically, racially, culturally, or sexually diverse place in my life.

I wish that people who kept fanning the flames of these hateful stereotypes would travel, not only within the US to as many states as possible, but also overseas. Then they'd begin to see that the things they take for granted here (from nice soft toilet paper to racial tolerance and cultural diversity) are what make this a great place.  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
houston is more progressive than (2.00 / 9)
ft worthless.  i swear, this is where rednecks, teabaggers come to roost.  i despise this city.  GET ME OUTTA HERE, PLEASE UNIVERSE, I'M BEGGING NOW.  sorry for the shouting, but, sometimes the universe is rather deaf.  :-)

Does the morgue wagon come with the job?

[ Parent ]
I always go hey what about my Muh? (2.00 / 23)
My Muh (Grandmother) still lives deep in the heart of Alabama, I have tons of people in Texas.  The people who go yeah just let em go piss me off because it's like they're willing to jettison my family cause they're to lazy to fight for us all.

"I honor the place in you where Spirit lives
I honor the place in you which is
of Love, of Truth, of Light, of Peace,
when you are in that place in you,
and I am in that place in me,
then we are One."  Namaste Friends!


Hi, Adept... I know that attitude, since I'm here in Mississippi. (2.00 / 20)
We get painted with the crazy brush all the time. And that often is true, because the crazy starts at the top with our Dominionist Gov...

But there are progressives living here. We sometimes have to work under the radar, because yes, it can get scary.


[ Parent ]
Good Ole Mississippi..I'll tell a funny story (2.00 / 22)
When I was like 17 I was down in Alabama Mobile to be exact visiting Muh.  She decided I ought to go have fun with the young folks at the local VFW and gave me her car.  It was only around the corner basically, and I went and had a ball.  When it was time for the party to end a nice young lady I was talking to asked for a lift home, so we jumped in Muhs Olds 88 and I took her home.  

So did you know the south down there doesn't care too much about street signs?  I found out cause I got lost as all heck.  I'm rolling down the highway trying to find a landmark to get back home when I saw it "Welcome to Mississippi".  Now I'm a Sou Cal dude I think I was preppy at the time, but I sure knew who Emmitt Till was, and I don't know I panicked.  I wanted to turn around went down a one way street and ended up at what at near midnight looked like an abandoned factory with all the windows out.  Panic Panic Panic burn rubber down another road and now i'm off the "highway" and that's when I pull up next to a stereotypical house with a guy on the front porch that in my mind was a stereotypical southern redneck holy fear you're about to get lynched.

As I was about to try a Dukes of Hazzard burn out you turn into the night he comes off the porch and hollers "You lost?" and bing the spell was broken.  Yes yes I was lost I managed to tell him.  I told him where I was from he said hold on went inside woke up his son.  He led me right back to Muh's door and I'm not sure I've ever met nicer people.

I always remember that when I think about making fearful assumptions.

"I honor the place in you where Spirit lives
I honor the place in you which is
of Love, of Truth, of Light, of Peace,
when you are in that place in you,
and I am in that place in me,
then we are One."  Namaste Friends!


[ Parent ]
AWESOME anecdote, Adept2u! (2.00 / 19)
I was amazed - almost even freaked out by - the kindness of folks here in Texas. Coming from New England, I thought I was a pretty nice person. I got on well with my neighbors. We'd chat while we were out shoveling or raking leaves, we'd offer to loan each other hedge trimmers or some such items, but really, if they said "no, thanks", we were fine with that.

In Texas, they'd come over with hedge trimmers, offer to trim your hedges for you, ask if you want to borrow anything else, then invite you out for margaritas and Mexican food.

Everyone - even the bag boy at the supermarket - welcomed us to Texas when they learned we were newcomers. As they say here "I wasn't born in Texas, but I got here as quick as I could".  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
you obviously were not in ft worthless n/t (2.00 / 5)


Does the morgue wagon come with the job?

[ Parent ]
Glad you got back to Muh's place without incident! (2.00 / 14)
But...I did have to remove my Obama/Biden '08 sticker after the 2008 election. Still have the key-marks on my Jeep right under it - it was on the back windshield.

But as a whole you are correct. Most folks are all right in one-on-one situations.

I replaced the '08 sig with one of these "tiny blue dot/really red state", a "Coexist", and a plain O-logo sticker. A bit more cryptic and less overt, just to preserve my paint job. Still representing though!  :-)


[ Parent ]
For anyone thinking that the South is devoid of intellectuals (2.00 / 15)
Red Blue

I saw this bumper sticker in the parking lot of a Waffle House in Mississippi

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
Reminds me of an incident before Dems retook the WHite House... (2.00 / 14)
Remember the square black stickers with a large "W" and underneath, in small letters, "The President"?

Well, on this vehicle stopped at a light in Jackson, MS (with a Hinds County tag no less, so this was a local and it was a minivan...) was a sticker that looked almost exactly the same as your usual W stickers, except under the W it said: "The Moron"...

I nearly fell out of the Jeep laughing. Yes, that sort of thing gives me hope.


[ Parent ]
But wait...now that I look at that - maybe I'm not as intellectual as (2.00 / 6)
I think... I first thought that belonged to one of "ours" but now... is the owner of the vehicle advocating for "blue" or against "blue"?

And maybe I'm missing something, but I still don't understand a sticker I see here, most often accompanied by anti-Dem adornments: "Honk If You're Paying My Mortgage"

I may be an idiot (or most likely not well-versed enough in convoluted TeaGOPer-speak) but for the life of me I do not understand what that is trying to say...


[ Parent ]
Lorinda, that bumper sticker is scientific, not political (2.00 / 11)
and refers to the "red shift", which Wikipedia defines as follows:

In physics (especially astrophysics), redshift happens when light seen coming from an object that is moving away is proportionally increased in wavelength, or shifted to the red end of the spectrum. More generally, when an observer detects electromagnetic radiation outside the visible spectrum, "redder" amounts to a technical shorthand for "increase in electromagnetic wavelength" - which also implies lower frequency and photon energy in accord with, respectively, the wave and quantum theories of light.

Redshifts are attributable to the Doppler effect, familiar in the changes in the apparent pitches of sirens and frequency of the sound waves emitted by speeding vehicles; an observed redshift due to the Doppler effect occurs whenever a light source moves away from an observer. Cosmological redshift is seen due to the expansion of the universe, and sufficiently distant light sources (generally more than a few million light years away) show redshift corresponding to the rate of increase of their distance from Earth. Finally, gravitational redshifts are a relativistic effect observed in electromagnetic radiation moving out of gravitational fields. Conversely, a decrease in wavelength is called blueshift and is generally seen when a light-emitting object moves toward an observer or when electromagnetic radiation moves into a gravitational field.

Although observing redshifts and blueshifts have several terrestrial applications (e.g., Doppler radar and radar guns),[1] redshifts are most famously seen in the spectroscopic observations of astronomical objects.[2]



I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
Oh, I understand red shift - I can Doppler with the best of them... (2.00 / 9)
I'm not just an artist - I have a hard-science background. It is a very smart bumper sticker... I was just not sure of the political bent of the owner!

(Seems like it could go either way, but maybe that's just be me - overthinking again!)     ;-D


[ Parent ]
Yeah, upon furthur review (and more coffee)... I was indeed overthinking. (2.00 / 9)
No political direction necessary. Yes, it is very funny and really smart, in and of itself. And I did understand the point you were making, even if I was (painfully) obtuse without enough caffeine...

But I still wish I understood what the "paying my mortgage" bumper sticker means...

That one completely escapes me.


[ Parent ]
That story more matches my Southern Experience than does Deliverance. (2.00 / 16)
And (let me see, you're 107 years old, so that was in... ;~)

I was so full of Righteous Liberal Vinegar Piss in '87 when I moved from Toronto to South Carolina - well, to the point of a recent diary, it makes me embarrassed and uncomfortable to admit.

Those Evil Southern Racists were going to get a lesson from me, oh boy betcha!



John Askren - "Never get into a pissing match with a skunk."


[ Parent ]
Which is why progressives owe you big time. (2.00 / 19)
We should have your back, as your opponents have the power and goodness knows where else. It's easy to be progressive and bold in, just to pull an example out of a handy piece of anatomy, say one's ass, San Francisco or Oakland. Harder in Birmingham, and yes, I've been there.


[ Parent ]
Yes, being a Progressive in Texas is actually (2.00 / 16)
a little easier than in some parts of the South, no doubt, but there are still millions of us lurking about the place ;-)


I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
not in my corner of texas (2.00 / 12)
so many confederate flags, so many "don't tread on me" flags, in windows on cars in front yards.  it's getting tedious.  there is one hope in my neighborhood, a family several blocks away, the only other family in the area that had the nerve to have Obama/Biden signs for both elections.  heck my across the street neighbor still has a ron paul sign up, and many still have romney ryan signs up.  it's annoying to say the least.

Does the morgue wagon come with the job?

[ Parent ]
Yep, that too... even on my street, in my blue county. (2.00 / 12)


[ Parent ]
i'm a hopemonger (2.00 / 9)
used to travel there a lot for work; i've had hope for texas for a long time.  this is me, way back in 2008:

In his satirical (and hilarious) book The Areas of My Expertise, funnyman John Hodgman categorizes the State of Texas like this:

NICKNAMES:  The Homeland, More Mexico

MOTTO:  "Friendship, Except When Betrayed, or Approached by Strangers."

NOTES:  You have heard the saying that everything is bigger in the Lone Star state, and it is true that the cats are the size of dogs and the dogs are the size of European cars.  But Texans themselves are of normal proportions, with normal-sized dreams and loves, who just happen to own cars that are the size of twenty-five European cars.

Like all good satire, there's a grain or two of truth in Hodgman's summary.  I work in the environmental consulting industry, often in support of the development and permitting of renewable energy facilities (e.g. wind and solar).  Last week these efforts brought me to the near center of a vast sea of Republican red: West Texas.

[snip]

True to Lone Star custom (and Hodgman's joke), the cars were bigger in Tom Green County too.  Many of them sported bumper stickers with sayings like Texas Is Bigger Than France, and this gem:  Their Mascot is a Jackass.  Any Questions?  We saw another that read Some People Are Only Alive Because it's Illegal to Shoot Them, but that's a whole different story, and I have tendency enough for digression.  Back to the gist.

The steaks and the cars were definitely big, but that isn't all:  Democratic turnout was bigger too.  In the 2008 Primaries 10,172 enlightened Texans pulled the level for a candidate with a "D" behind the name.  

Not too shabby, considering that the GOP slate drew a crowd of 8,813 confused (or crazy) Republicans out to the booths.  McCain won with 59% of the vote, with "Aw Shucks" Huckabee a distant second.

http://www.dailykos.com/story/...

Earth is the best vacation place for advanced clowns. --Gary Busey
 


[ Parent ]
Great stuff, fogiv, and it's gotten better since then (2.00 / 8)
Plenty of Democratic votes this last time around, helped in part by a strong Hispanic get-out-the-vote effort

SCAN0011

funded by a prominent Democratic attorney who has been active in local politics.  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
as an aside, this old post really shows my evolution as a blogger (2.00 / 8)
...i used to write stuff with lots of imformation.  now, i tend to produce odd rants and comments that hinge some variation of a fart joke.

(sigh)

Earth is the best vacation place for advanced clowns. --Gary Busey
 


[ Parent ]
Thanks, Adept2u (2.00 / 21)
Whether we're born in the south or we've moved here for school, work, love, or economics, we're AMERICANS, and nobody's entitled to strip us our citizenship for their ease and convenience!

You're exactly right: if people are "too lazy to fight for us all", shame on them. If PROGRESSIVES are "too lazy to fight for us all", they're no kind of Progressives at all.  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
Money quote right there..."If Progressives are too lazy to fight for us all, (2.00 / 21)
they're no kind of progressives at all.

"Pin your money to your girdle and don't talk to strangers."  My Grandmom's advice when I went away to school.  I don't wear a girdle and have never met a stranger.  Sorry Grandmom!

[ Parent ]
I think we mostly fool ourselves, (2.00 / 13)
it is human nature.

OT (well, not entirely) it was in Toronto where I had my one and only experience with pick pocketing. Three 'ladies of the night' accosted me as I got out of a cab, already half-soused, to meet a friend in a bar.

"Baby, want a good time?"ing with hands all over me, one of them reached into my front jeans pocket and left with $280 in cash.

Interesting experience in distraction, if also expensive.

John Askren - "Never get into a pissing match with a skunk."


[ Parent ]
we have so much more in common (2.00 / 19)
than in different.

lincoln was pushing for the railroad to tie the country together e-w, while fighting for the south . . .

(yes, i said that awkwardly).  


Great point about Lincoln, jlms qkw (2.00 / 17)
So much ties us together, from our collective history to our infrastructure, plus the fact that many of us - myself included - are much more "interstate-mobile", moving far from our birthplaces, whether for college, jobs, love, economics or other motivations. This constant mixing can't help but break down stereotypes.  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
I really like this. It tires my spirit when I read about the South (2.00 / 17)
as has been written elsewhere.  I find with relatives and friends that once they come and spend time here they realize the stereotypes are way off.  I reckon the loud voices putting down the South haven't spent any time exploring it's goodness.

"Pin your money to your girdle and don't talk to strangers."  My Grandmom's advice when I went away to school.  I don't wear a girdle and have never met a stranger.  Sorry Grandmom!

You're right, nannyboz (2.00 / 17)
Mr. Carolina and I have spent time in all the Gulf Coast states and everyone we've met has been just fine. We all like our Waffle House breakfasts, our fresh seafood, our "real" Mexican food, our families, our sports teams, and our pets.

On days like this, we like our weather a lot, too ;-)  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
My mother lied to me about being born in Alabama (2.00 / 16)
until I was a teen. She was embarrased to admit it.

Since then I have found out who her father was (a secret she did not even know about until ten years ago) and met my cousins there and in Georgia. About my grandfather Marvin Stanley who was Chief of Police in Montgomery during the civil rights era, and who worked with Martin Luther King Jr. (apparently they had fun with the "Marvin and Martin" alliteration ;~) to ensure that non-violent actions stayed that way.

Even the non-liberals in the South are generally not what liberals elsewhere believe. I don't think any of my cousins there are going to vote Democrat anytime soon, but they are all great people. One of them is a female pastor at a Unitarian church, others are police officer-jazz musicians, none of them are Eveel Racists.

The left is in no way free from prejudice (literally "Pre Judging"), California does not trump Georgia in warm and good people. So many of our lefthanded friends in the US and Canada are dumb-founded by our enthusiastic choice to live in Tennessee, but they do not know what they are missing.

And that's the point.

John Askren - "Never get into a pissing match with a skunk."


[ Parent ]
What a fascinating comment, Chris! (2.00 / 14)
Stereotyping our fellow Americans wastes an incredible amount of emotional (and cyber) bandwidth. If I didn't know better (and I don't, really...) I'd think that someone wants us turning on one another to distract us from the real problems and shenanigans going on. Like those cute kids doing tricks to distract you while the pickpocket robs you blind...  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
So many folks from the Northeast are retiring here and (2.00 / 14)
love it.  I get tickled when they find we have really good pizza, Trader Joe's, bagel shops and delis.  Maybe they expected the crowd from Deliverance but if so darned if I know why they moved here.

"Pin your money to your girdle and don't talk to strangers."  My Grandmom's advice when I went away to school.  I don't wear a girdle and have never met a stranger.  Sorry Grandmom!

[ Parent ]
I completely agree with your position, cassandra. (1.94 / 16)
But I sometimes wonder if we are not too big to govern effectively. I think the US is number three (behind China and India) and I'm not sure if that is not extremely detrimental to unity; with our sheer size allowing for theoretical (if not sometimes practical) Balkanization.

Heck, Texas and Germany are about the same size. Great Britain could fit inside one of several states.

I have no answers, but I think (?) B. Franklin was correct when he said if we do not hang together, we shall surely all hang separately.


Good points, Lorinda Pike (2.00 / 14)
I think that between the Federal government system in place and our governors and state assemblies, we have "enough" government. What we may lack is alignment of purpose, and into this fray we have added the Tea Party and other corporate interests financed by those at the top of the economy who feel that they - and only they - should be reaping the rewards of our hard labor.

While that may provoke some pushback (probably not to the extent of revolution), I don't see how state-versus-state antagonism would result. We are all in this together, a fact that we ignore at our individual and collective peril.  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
Biggest problem with our "bigness" (2.00 / 13)
is that The People's House of Representatives is no longer The People's House. Not when you have one rep for every 700K people (approximately). Triple the House, and a lot of the bigness issue goes away.


[ Parent ]
And, for the love of god, outlaw gerrymandering. (2.00 / 15)
end-fucking-trans

John Askren - "Never get into a pissing match with a skunk."

[ Parent ]
And just this morning we have the aforementioned Goobernator - (1.92 / 12)
the deep-dipped Phil Bryant - taking a break from trying to close the last remeining Planned Parenthood clinic in the state to actively trying to resurrect the old Sovereignty Commission (a thinly-veiled incarnation of the KKK) to push "State's Rights". And he will have the support of the TeaGOPer Legislature for whatever he has in mind. And he has bad things planned on many fronts, including pushing vouchers/charter schools and "repealing Obamacare".

Damn, so many battles we have already fought that we may have to fight again...


[ Parent ]
significant blue down south (2.00 / 19)
Population weighted:

Congressional districts:

Hard to imagine writing those folks off.  That would be an enormous mistake.


Wow, great maps, bubbanomics! Thanks! (2.00 / 17)
Yes - Texas is well on its way to becoming a 25-million-person swing state soon, and Blue state in the foreseeable future. We're also one of the top financial donor states (for both parties), although our money generally supports out-of-state races, sadly.

With a little help, the Progressives here could be speeding up this process. Our shifting demographics are also a big part of the equation.  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
to me, it's a missed opportunity that some on the left (2.00 / 12)
seem unwilling to engage the rural "flyover state" voter.  The Chuck Thompson approach, to me, weakens us all. About a year ago I disengaged from this place in response to a diatribe of that sort.

[ Parent ]
Shaun can be forgiven, he's been standing on his head so long the blood pools... ;~) (2.00 / 7)
(points at Aussie expat)

No liberal "place" is free from South Hating, it is one of the banes of the left that spreads far and wide. I disengaged from the entirety of Liberalism for many years because of rampant intolerantism under the guise of tolerance.

I think the left has grown up in many ways, though, vocal instances notwithstanding. As a group it has become less flinch-responsive, and as individuals many have learned the lesson of self-contradiction.

John Askren - "Never get into a pissing match with a skunk."


[ Parent ]
Sadly true, Chris... (2.00 / 10)
No liberal "place" is free from South Hating, it is one of the banes of the left that spreads far and wide.

I've written a number of diaries and comments at The Place That Shall Not Be Named on the matter of "state hate". When Texas was being ravaged by wildfires, or the Gulf Coast threatened by hurricanes, or tornadoes touched down in some rural area, some folks couldn't contain their glee. Evidently Red States - and their inhabitants (regardless of political affiliation) - "deserved" these natural disasters. What fun to pile on at a time of crisis!

Oh, and these states didn't "deserve" any Federal help in recovery, since these Evil Red States were already siphoning away government funds to continue their shiftless lifestyle. Let these states, and the folks whose homes, businesses, livelihoods, and dreams were burned, blown away, washed away, or otherwise destroyed realize the evil of their ways.

I have no idea how any human being can feel that way. How anyone calling themselves a Liberal or a Progressive can espouse such a view is beyond me.


I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
Cognitive Dissonance isn't just for breakfast, anymore. (2.00 / 8)
My Centrism is only (a very real) part ideological. The Us vs Them of Groupism is tiringly predictable. Hearing it from groups that identify as inclusive, loving and tolerant as a fundamental plank makes my face ache.

I may have less patience for Glen Limbaugh and that wing of blind groupism, but I don't have more for similar talk from the left.

John Askren - "Never get into a pissing match with a skunk."


[ Parent ]
Chris, you've explained it exactly: (2.00 / 8)
The Us vs Them of Groupism is tiringly predictable. Hearing it from groups that identify as inclusive, loving and tolerant as a fundamental plank makes my face ache.

Given all of the challenges we face as a country, how can anyone spend a nanosecond contemplating the idea of stripping millions of Americans of their citizenship and casting them out of the country? How does that differ from ethnic cleansing or a Holocaust?  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
Us v. Them can be interesting. (2.00 / 6)
I'm remembering the Elian Gonzalez affair, which had Republicans and Democrats in a tizzy trying to figure out which side they should be on.    

[ Parent ]
Because we don't really have sides. (2.00 / 3)
I am very glad we have a two-party system, something I would not have said earlier in my life. It forces us to make choices and live with them, which in total is a good thing.

But the idea that any of us wholly adhere to/oppose the precise views as anyone else is nonsense. In reality each of us carries a complex - changing - set of views, and where we disagree it is rarely about ends but more often about means.

The same goes between Americans and people in other countries. You know what Yemenis want? To wake up rested, have a good day with clean air and enough food and something useful to do, get back to a decent home before it is too late and sleep well without worrying about their friends and families.

It's that simple.

John Askren - "Never get into a pissing match with a skunk."


[ Parent ]
You got it, Chris: it really IS that simple (2.00 / 2)
All the world over, people want to live without fear, enjoy the fruits of their labors, see their children achieve their dreams, and have the chance to see peace in their time.  Sadly, there are those who'd stand in the way of these basic wishes.  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
Oh, bubba...that first map makes me feel so much better. (2.00 / 13)
It's way more purple that I had hoped. I happen to live in that most-solid-blue county in central Mississippi...the neighbor of the seriously deep-red one...:::sigh:::

We joke that when we have to travel to our neighboring county, we take bottled water to drink (as in don't drink the water; it will bring your IQ down by 30 points...) and we only take every third breath.

I know it's nasty to joke like that, but they may really be a lost cause.


[ Parent ]
i'd guess that's vicksburg and jackson (2.00 / 12)
roughly speaking...

The 'real' red states appear to be OK, KS, NE, WY.  


[ Parent ]
Well, Hinds County is the blue one...Vicksburg to our west is in (2.00 / 8)
Warren County, and is a bit lighter blue than Hinds. Hinds went 73% for the President in November. Yay!

Rankin County is the deep-red culprit. It will take a sea-change in demographics and/or mindset there to make any difference at all.

As for KS, NE, WY - rural, mostly, and ethnically homogeneous outside of urban areas. Rural=red, usually. At least that's what I see here in MS.  


[ Parent ]
indeed. (2.00 / 10)
outside of New England, rural is red and urban is blue. I have a theory that this is due to the level of organization and specialization necessary in urban areas... either consciously or subconsciously urbanites recognize the need for government involvement to make things work.  Rural folks are more likely to have that sense of self-reliance that allows them to think that government is a hindrance.  At least that's my theory.

[ Parent ]
I think you are spot on. (2.00 / 6)
The mere fact that to live together in close proximity necessitates cooperation and a working infrastructure is conducive to tolerance, if not fostering genuine inclusiveness.

"Out there" in the rural areas the every man for himself attitude can still be considered normal, and government is almost always seen as intrusive, and "the problem".

Yep, your theory works in my experience. And changing that mindset will take a lot of time and effort.


[ Parent ]
Yes, Lorinda, there's a strong "self-reliant" streak (2.00 / 7)
among many Texas folks, until...

Texas Self Reliance

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
You got that right... (2.00 / 7)
Witness Rep. Steve Palazzo of MS's 4th District (The Gulf Coast) who voted against aid for the Northeast after Hurricane Sandy.

He was excoriated by many of his constituents for that stance, since they correctly saw the need in their future for federal aid after the next hurricane decimates the Coast...

Palazzo backed off a bit - maybe his cognitive dissonance became too painful, or that figurative two-by-four upside the head sort of hurt...


[ Parent ]
Oh Sooo True.... (2.00 / 5)
Ricky Perry while running for President...We need less government! We don't need Washington's help...And then the wildfires that engulfed so much of our beautiful hill country...And Perry was sing a different tune...Yo! Guy in the White House we need some help down here! "I once was blind but now I see"...well until the next presidential election! ;o)

"A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle"...."We make a Living by what we get...We make a Life by what we give."  

[ Parent ]
Great posting, thank you so much (2.00 / 15)
President Obama got 3,308,124 votes in Texas this cycle.

The blatant bigotry being displayed from both sides on this dead horse issue continues to dumbfound and disgust me.


Thank you, bill d (2.00 / 12)
You've said in this one sentence

The blatant bigotry being displayed from both sides on this dead horse issue continues to dumbfound and disgust me.

What took me 793 words. Love it.  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
Yours is more like a symphony & mine is more like an ad jingle. :) (2.00 / 11)


[ Parent ]
Maybe so, bill di, but people will be much more likely (2.00 / 11)
to remember the ad jingle (even after years of therapy) than the symphony ;-)  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
glad to see this on the front page...very well said. (2.00 / 14)
n/t.

"No disrespect intended, please accept my apology and disregard my previous comments."~GTP

Secession is unconstitutional and impossible, whoever wants it (2.00 / 15)
Whitehouse.gov say it more or less this way.
Question solved by the Civil War.
Can't be done.
So, it follows as you say, you don't need to have an election rights lawyer trained by a constitutional lawyer who happens to be current hold the position of PoTUS on retainer to know that
That any so-called Progressives consider it a viable - or even desirable option - is simply beyond my comprehension

Why you can even be a Moose and know it.


Grammatical errors galore corrected here (2.00 / 11)
election lawyer [should be followed by] on retainer
[then]
trained by a
constitutional lawyer who happens to [drop be] currently the position of PoTus
and now back to my tooth extraction headache.

[ Parent ]
TX's destiny is to be Blue: here's why (2.00 / 15)
It's state flower, after all, is the Bluebonnet.

Photo embed skilled people are welcome to insert an image for me.  


Love the bluebonnets, BlueStateRedhead! (2.00 / 14)
Springtime in Texas Painting

Let's hope we get a bumper crop this year!  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
(((Lady Bird Johnson))) and all she did for TX wildflowers nt (2.00 / 12)


[ Parent ]
Lady Bird was awesome - a gift that keeps on giving n/t (2.00 / 11)


I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
Regardless of how one feels about the (2.00 / 14)
two words added in the 1950s (which I omit), the Pledge of Alegiance says it all:
and to the Republic for which it stands,
One nation,
Indivisible

With Liberty and Justice for all.

What part of that did  those advocates (on both sides of the ideological divide) NOT understand?

I am for the individual over government, government over big business and the environment over all. -- William O. Douglas


ft worth lags behind the rest of the state (2.00 / 7)
in progressiveness and my particular suburb is waaaaaay behind.  a latino republican mayor that we don't have enough progressive votes to blast out of that seat, he's a huge friend/fan of GWB.  most in this area think GWB was amazingly wonderful.  they never will understand that they supported the guy in direct opposition to their own self-interest.  

the yankees (and i'm not using that term in a derogatory manner) that move down here are the type of yuppies that are admire greed, and the "housewives" aspire to be that Vanderpump woman.  

i tend to stay away from all of them.  fundamentalists rule around here too.  

i was born and raised in texas, we gave the USA some amazing statesmen (include women in that word) and when i look around this area, i wonder, just how the heck we fell so far.  it's a big state of course, and there are some wonderful people, they just don't live in ft worth or in the suburbs thereof.

Does the morgue wagon come with the job?


The difference between the Houston area and Dallas-Fort Worth (2.00 / 8)
seems to me related to the massive in-migration of people from all around the country - and the world - for jobs in the Houston area. Not just "oil" related jobs, but engineering, manufacturing, NASA, Port of Houston, US government facilities... We don't have a lot of "old" money here, nor a lot of affiliations with "old" anything. Historic preservation is just catching on, now that we've bulldozed most of the "old" stuff (none of which is as old as the "old" stuff we had in New England!).

This may account for the ethnic, racial, economic, gender, and cultural diversity we enjoy here, and the associated tolerance for others.

The embedded lesson in all this is that in a growing, robust economy, there's much less reason to be fighting one another for pieces of a fixed-size pie. America: are y'all paying attention??  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
ft worth has always had an inferiority (2.00 / 6)
complex  because of the competition with Dallas. which is weird since many extremely wealthy people established businesses in Dallas and their homes here.  i mean, we have a world class art museum, the Kimbell is highly respected so there is culture, but somehow, the people here have a very insular "holier and better than thou" attitude which really doesn't work well.  i'm not sure what i'm trying to say except that ft worth just resents being an "also ran".

Carswell is here, a naval air station, lockheed, bell helicopter, that horribly managed airlines (American), lots of businesses that depend on government contracts yet, the attitude of the people is amazingly hostile to the federal government.  it's a "bite the hand that feeds you" mentality.  never can wrap my mind around that one.

Does the morgue wagon come with the job?


I'm just SW of you...Granbury (2.00 / 8)
We're one of the bedroom communities feeding a good deal of the businesses you've mentioned.

I agree that there is a pervasive attitude toward government here, one that defies logic as there are many government contracts floating around the Metroplex. My husband works on federal contract. I get it.

I don't agree the problem is Fort Worth having a complex about Dallas as much as it is that you have to consider who actually lives in Dallas--lower income people and minorities make up the biggest part of the population. Which why Dallas is pretty much so blue. But that said, you also have to consider that Dallas or what people think of as Dallas is really the Metroplex. Dallas alone is dying, more people have left the city and moved to the mid cities or out in my neck of the woods. Commute be damned. It's not uncommon to find people living anywhere but Dallas. Plano, Arlington, The Colony, Richardson, Farmer's Branch, Lewisville and slew of smaller towns...All of those cities are part of the Metroplex so it's easy think Dallas is shining star and Fort Worth is much less.

Let me add this bit, there has been a HUGE effort to get more people to move back into Dallas since Laura Miller left office some eight years ago. She was not a good fit for the city, in short it was a nightmare. Highrise apartments, more parks and recreation, more trendy shopping area--a lot has been added to make living in Dallas proper more of cosmopolitian experience. So who knows, perhaps Dallas will be able to rebuild. Fort Worth on the other hand is way ahead of the game on that front. Who knows what will trend out--It's Texas anything is likely to happen!

I get where you're coming from but having lived nearly 30 years now...Well it's changing, but very slowly.  

"A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle"...."We make a Living by what we get...We make a Life by what we give."  


[ Parent ]
good points all (2.00 / 5)
and i agree with you in many ways.  

the biggest difference is that ft worth has no intention of changing and every intention of trying to keep out "the wrong kind of people".  i do find that my particular part of tarrant county is quite racist.  it's an undercurrent and insidious type of racism.  

no one believes me when i tell them i'm not a wasp. :-)  anyway, i just try to make the best of it all.  have to, not much choice LOL.

Does the morgue wagon come with the job?


[ Parent ]
I know an ugly racism streak does exist in Tarrant county. (2.00 / 5)
It's around here too. Sometimes I think rural Texas is just a whole 'nother country unto itself. Fort Worth has gone big city in lot of ways, but at it's core, it's still just a big old farming and ranching town. Quaint to a degree, but a royal pain for the most part because those rural attitudes do get in the way of progress. I get it. I really do.

And I get frustrated. Really frustrated with some of the attitudes around there and here too. I live among farmers complaining about all that government help "those" people are getting but their subsidies, and those low interest rate loans, and how about that nice tax break for owning over ten acres of land as long as you plant a field of something? Yeah hello government.

It's a case of people wearing big honkin' blinders or that whole not being able to see the forest for the trees deal. Although I believe it's by choice.

I'm hoping Fort Worth isn't all a downer for you, you should try Granbury sometime :o) Lovely town square, drive in theater, great bbq, Granbury Opera House has a new play up and going...lol..Not exactly your average hometown!

"A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle"...."We make a Living by what we get...We make a Life by what we give."  


[ Parent ]
driven through granbury many a time (2.00 / 2)
never stopped though.  maybe when the weather warms mr. l and i will take a short drive down there for the day.  just enjoy the small town feel.  i always wanted to stop, but there was always some reason we had to get on home.  

Does the morgue wagon come with the job?

[ Parent ]
disclosure: i was born and raised in south texas (2.00 / 7)
san antonio and points south specifically.  whole different world.  it really is a HUGE state.

Does the morgue wagon come with the job?

Love San Antonio... (2.00 / 7)
My dad was stationed at Randolph when I was in 8th and 9th grade...Randolph High School..I think it's part of Judson now?

I love the Valley, I'm hoping my lupus issues clear up soon and I'll be able to travel again. I'd love to see S.Padre this summer!

"A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle"...."We make a Living by what we get...We make a Life by what we give."  


[ Parent ]
This is a hard topic for me.... (2.00 / 9)
And this pretty well sums up my reaction.

More than a few people that I used to like and respect over there jumped on board with a hearty "oh, HELL yes" at the possibility of jettisoning those pesky Southern states when the prospect was dangled in front of them like the red meat it is. I was shocked. I was hurt. I was angry.

My husband is a 5th generation Texan. He is proud of Texas heritage, knows his Texas history and loves this state big time. When our oldest son was born, we were in NC, that man actually brought a jar of Texas dirt with from Texas to put under the birthing bed in the hospital when our oldest child was born. And then he get got us back to Texas as fast as he could!

He's a conservative, but a conservative without a party. He can't in good conscience support any party that sees fit to throw the poor to the ravages of social elements or a party that will see the sick turned away and left to die because they won't feed the bottom line of the medical corporations.

There are more like him, quiet and not talking about their politics, but disgusted. Texas will turn blue. Our demographics alone will make that happen. But more importantly the Democratic Party of Texas knows two things--we have to get out the vote as in continue to register new voters. And we have got to stop the National DNC from constantly using Texas as an ATM machine. Our resources need to stay local so that we can fight and win locally.  

"A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle"...."We make a Living by what we get...We make a Life by what we give."  


It's a hard topic for me, LeftOverFlowerChild, and I'm (2.00 / 8)
most definitely from the North. It offends me to the core to think that anyone would propose that

(a) people who want their state to secede should be given every opportunity to make that happen or that
(b) those "in charge" (i.e., pompous bloggers claiming to be Progressives) can dictate which states ought to be jettisoned so that the newly trimmed country can get on with its business without the excess baggage

Why is such talk not considered sedition?  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
maybe we can meet in the middle some time (2.00 / 7)
i always like to meet new people and particularly progressives fairly close by.  granbury isn't all that far away.  

Does the morgue wagon come with the job?

I share your feelings on this (2.00 / 11)
That anyone in this country considers geographic cleansing a viable option is appalling to me. That any so-called Progressives consider it a viable - or even desirable option - is simply beyond my comprehension.

I'm sick and tired of reading "let the south go..." or "kick em out" remarks from progressives who should know better.

Great piece!  

"If you're in a coalition and you're comfortable, you know it's not a broad enough coalition"

Bernice Johnson Reagon


Thank you, DeniseVelez! (2.00 / 9)
There's much to be done, and I wonder whether our enemies are stirring up this discontent so that Progressives fritter away our time beating up our fellow citizens. That way, we won't notice the real malfeasance that's being perpetrated on our country... on ALL of us. (Or at least 99% of us!)

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
I think that we can turn Texas blue. the demographics are (2.00 / 10)
moving in our favor. If not in 2016, then certainly by 2020. I also worry about what would happen to the poor folks, and especially poor folks of color, in the red states if parts of the old confederacy were allowed or forced to secede.

Having said that, there are aspects of the old confederacy that make me a bit uncomfortable. My niece and her family have lived in the south for over 30 years, in southwestern VA, SC, AL, and then NC. I am a northerner through and through. My great-grandfather served in the Union army. I am upset when I see the confederate flag, whether as part of a state flag or flying proudly over a BBQ joint. It is a symbol of secession and slavery. I am really upset when I hear the likes of Haley Barbour talk about the Civil Rights movement. The man went to segregated schools!!!! I have a problem with notions like the "War of Northern Aggression" which are taught in the schools in the Old South. The GOP has increasingly become an older white male party with its base in the old confederacy. I don't think that this is healthy for our nation.  


No question about it, blue jersey mom (2.00 / 7)
There are still some very ugly realities in the South, but they're unsustainable. There are simply not enough angry old white guys to keep this going, as our population becomes increasingly diverse, and increasingly young. Also, the fact that we're far more mobile as a society, and there is a continuing migration from Rustbelt states to the south in search of jobs and affordable housing. While there are plenty of folks who may find all this change a threat of epic proportions, it's the prevailing reality and they'd better get used to it.  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
that sort of backwardness (2.00 / 7)
has been hard fought in Texas. I know that the last vestiges of respectability for the old confederacy have been slowly dying out in Houston. I suppose amongst the set that goes for debutante balls it will live on but most Houstonians pay less attention to that element than ever.  

There's nothing like eavesdropping to show you that the world outside your head is different from the world inside your head.--Thornton Wilder

[ Parent ]
That's how I see it, wordsinthewind... (2.00 / 7)
Living in the Houston area for 5 years now, I have met very few people "from" Houston; many from elsewhere, from a relocated Katrina victim to many people who moved here for jobs (theirs or their loved one's) and some who moved here to be near their kids or grandkids. Many of these new arrivals hail from all over the US and the world, and they don's have any "confederacy" baggage. This gives me hope that the South in general may be becoming more of a regional melting pot.  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
it's funny you know (2.00 / 5)
I was born and reared in Houston and could not wait to leave. I fled for the far reaches of west Texas. There were additional considerations as well, out here no one knew who I was related to and since I never brought it up was able to separate myself. Of course there were those moments along the way where I got to listen to someone rant on about my family but I normally found that amusing. Oh really? Seriously, you don't know the half of it dude. Fortunately I'm usually happy to leave it unsaid, I got that from my dad. Men like that are described as tacturn while women often get called dour.

There's nothing like eavesdropping to show you that the world outside your head is different from the world inside your head.--Thornton Wilder

[ Parent ]
Tennesse and the Carolinas are filling up with "Half Backs" (2.00 / 5)
Folks like us who have tried the "let's move to Florida!" thing - only to realize that summer is four months of blazing hell - and move half way back north.

The Carolinas, Tennessee, Kentucky and that latitude are perfect living for anyone accustomed to the north. Sultry summer nights, short winter but a full range of seasons, pleasant spring and fall and within a day's drive of pretty well everything.

We are a comfortable four hours to Atlanta; six hour drive to DC; nine to Disney World, Chicago; ten to NYC; 12 to Miami, Toronto, Dallas, Boston; as far as Minneapolis or Houston in no more than 14 hours...

We called this move "Operation Crossroads". ;~)

John Askren - "Never get into a pissing match with a skunk."


[ Parent ]
Chris, this is one of the reasons that Mr. Carolina and I (2.00 / 6)
built our retirement home in the Cape Fear area of North Carolina after 10 years of scouting property along the SC and NC coast. Our families are still in New England, and we're in an ideal location for their free vacation stays. The weather's great much of the year, we have a nice wooded property near the Intracoastal Waterway, protected by a barrier island, and nowhere near the Outer Banks, which are clipped too often by hurricanes. It's all good ;-)

NC map

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
Just commented in Adept's diary... (2.00 / 5)
I grew up in SC near Charleston. Every school year included a field trip to Ft. Sumter. I have walked the Battery in Charleston countless times with the Fort in view over the water. A constant reminder of where 'it' all began.

I think those calling for secession have a screw loose. It is a cry of ignorance. Ignorance of history....ignorance of current realities...ignorance of what it would mean for our future. Past, present, future...no matter how you look it...just pure ignorance.

My folks still live in the house my siblings and I grew up in. My sister and both brothers live in North Carolina now. My wife and I are in Virginia. All Southern states...all chock full of wonderful people and places...and all absolutely vital to the health of our United States.

Secession?

/facepalm

Photobucket


A comment from a different part of the country. I now (2.00 / 5)
live in Manhattan though was raised in Massachusetts and worked for a while in the Midwest.  Whenever I am outside of NYC and am asked where I am from, I am barraged with expressions of contempt and vitriol for the city that is now my home and for the people who live here.  Think we all have to realize what we have in common and not forget that because of what we all share is exactly what makes us who we are.

[ Parent ]
.Anyone who doesn't love NYC (2.00 / 5)
has either never been there or, well, has a screw loose.

NYC rocks, from the cool restaurants in Soho to the awesome eateries in Queens, Harlem, uptown,...


John Askren - "Never get into a pissing match with a skunk."


[ Parent ]
Thanks for this perspective, Kysen (2.00 / 4)
Visits to American historical sites should be mandatory as part of our education. For me, they are a welcome and vital part of any travel. I have dragged work colleagues to the Great Falls of the Potomac, for instance, while at meetings in Washington DC. Usually, people have no idea what awaits them, and are amazed. Visits to battlefields, museums, re-enactments, historic sites, parks, and other points of interest inform us, and sometimes leave us saddened, awed, or angry. We need to experience those emotions.

It's a sad commentary that naturalized citizens like my mom know more about American history thank many folks who have lived here their entire lives.  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
This is an excellent diary. (2.00 / 6)
Born and raised in Alabama. There are good progressives in every Southern state, and certain aspects of Southern culture are most wonderful (cheesy grits, amirite?!). The South has an important role in the formation, heart, and soul of the United States. We're all in this together.

Put more simply, secession = PHAIL. From any rational perspective.

The willful ignorance being so prominently (even proudly) displayed by so many across the country... truly stymies me at times.

When I think about it too much my head hurts.



Come to me in my dreams, and then
By day I shall be well again!
For so the night will more than pay
The hopeless longing of the day.


Southern Food (2.00 / 5)
mmmm

I love (the food, don't get me started) the winking (but serious) stubborn laughing twist of Southernism. Everything is a joke, everything has a real component, nothing (except everything) is to be taken seriously.

The South gives the US a part of its 'spirit', a chamber of its heart that it cannot get without southerners.

The south makes you want to mess with people, just a little bit.

John Askren - "Never get into a pissing match with a skunk."


[ Parent ]
Yes, Chris - great point (2.00 / 5)
Our American regions are like chambers of a heart. Sure, that heart may skip a beat from time to time, or race a little too fast, or reverberate with echoes of disturbances, but it's what keeps us alive. We should take better care of it ;-)


I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
"California Girls", oddly enough, is a great testament to the American Quilt. (2.00 / 3)
I've lived in all of it, South, North, West, Midwest. The only part we haven't really lived in is the NE big cities, but with decades in Toronto and lots of time in NYC/DC/Boston I can safely say I know this country on a deeply personal level.

Each part has it's own twist, and each twist is wonderful. Folks often ask which part I like best, but it's like asking "what does blue sound like?".

The South is lovely, the people are some of the best in the world. Gracious and kind, funny and thoughtful.

New York City is fantastic, the people there are wonderful too. Tell you what they mean directly, at the same time kind and will help someone just as quickly. Always makes me think of a time on the Long Island Railroad, getting off a train, and an elderly man with a walker. Without a moment's pause me and two guys put our stuff down, got him and his off, everyone made room for us without a word or a look and we just as quickly grabbed our gear and went on without a word.

Anyone wanting to pretend this country isn't all good full of great people everywhere just doesn't know what they are talking about. It's one nation, indivisible, and anyone that wants to try is going to find out just how we all really feel about it.

John Askren - "Never get into a pissing match with a skunk."


[ Parent ]
Thanks, sricki! (2.00 / 5)
The food... Mmmmm! Being on a low-carb regimen is not easy here, with the array of tasty treats, but the good news is that fresh produce is available much of the year, along with wonderful fresh seafood. With mild temperatures, it's also easy to get outdoors for a little gardening, a walk, or birdwatching on the backporch.

I will admit: I wasn't keen on moving to Texas as a "trailing spouse", but the MUCH lower cost of living compared to New England enabled me and Mr. Carolina to buy a lovely wooded half-acre plot in coastal NC and build our retirement home there in anticipation of our move later this year.

Guess I will be a Southerner for the rest of my life, a choice being made by more and more Americans every day. Y'all come on down!  

I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.


-- Oscar Wilde


[ Parent ]
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