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Member since: Sat Nov 29, 2008, 02:55 PM
Number of posts: 17,671

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Actually, I do have a terminal degree in the subject at hand.

And I can say with some authority that forcing cultural change by telling people how they are supposed to feel won't work. Cultural revolutions never end well. Anyone who tells you different is flattering you to get your money.

You know what works? This right here. Two people talking to each other. People actually working with people. When we see others through the lens of an ideology we dehumanize them. And we have to dehumanize people to brutalize them.

That's why a college course to teach people about "rape culture" merely enriches those who profit from the culture wars. But a course that teaches people about other people builds a culture worth having.

Fortunately, there are already any number of courses in college curricula that could fill the bill. We need to teach kids about the rights of women concerning their bodies and their role in procreation. That's biology. We need to teach kids about justice and human rights. That's ethics. We need to teach kids how to give life, and culture, meaning beyond mere subsistence and consumption. That's the arts.

And none of those courses has to depend on the canonization or victimization of a particular race, gender, faith or nationality to function. It's about people. That's our common ground, and that's what counts.

While the terms

"many" and "some" are employed as rhetorical cover, the disdain for those who own guns is manifestly clear. DU is a tough room for gun owners because liberal conventional wisdom dictates that guns symbolize all that is bad about conservative ideology. That attitude has some merit. You can't argue that the members of the left stand in opposition to conservative ideology and its attendant totem and deny the disdain shown here for the owners of that totem. But it is unfair to judge others on their associations, especially if those associations are merely inanimate objects. That isn't even quality bigotry.

Thank you. I try to be reasonable and respectful. I don't always manage it. Sometimes I don't even try. I was a Scots-Irish Jack Daniels drinking gun owning farm boy tractor jockey sumbitch long before I got an MFA. And I still am. If I think somebody needs cussing, they'll get cussed. But rational discussion works best.

It seemed to me that

civil war reenactors rated somewhere below trekkies on the nerd index. That being said, the south still suffers from the effects of the Civil War and racism but not the way most people seem to think. The wounds of war take a long time to heal, especially when you're on the losing side both militarily and ideologically.

I lived most of my life in the south, but nowhere near there now. I live near (can't afford to live in it) an affluent, very liberal community surrounded by a more conservative region. While there is no real difference in the level of racism in the region, it's overshadowed by the classism of my "liberal" community.

The south is the poorest, most backward region in this country. But nobody living there deserves that fate any more than anybody living in any other region. Racism is not wrecking the south or the country in general. The real problem is the unrepentant classism on both sides of the political aisle. I expect such snobbery from conservatives and their deluded constituents clinging to the illusion of upper middle class status. But people claiming to be progressives should know better. And people who claim to understand politics would do well to not ignore a voting bloc whose ancestors, as I understand it, comprised the bulk of both the Continental army and the Confederacy.

The "redneck southern mindset" has less to do with racism than with an extreme distrust of aristocracy and elitism. They (we) are dirty, drunken, combative critters who don't give two dry shits in a bucket about what you say or what you own. The only thing that matters is what you do.

The south is about to find out how badly they have been betrayed by the Republican party. If Democrats are smart, they will put their money where their mouth is and do something to deserve the loyalty of a people who have been stirring up shit from the Mason Dixon line to Hadrian's Wall for the last two thousand years. One way or another, you will have to deal with them (us). Put up or shut up.
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