Sunday, October 12, 2008

The Realistic Racist

Welcome to "The Gods Are Bored," watching from the sidelines as Sarah Palin fights her maverick way across Philadelphia, facing hatred on (almost) all sides.

Our favorite Witch-Burning-Inquisitor attended a fundraiser in Philly last night, 400 invitees. She was met by an equal or greater number of protesters outside the venue. They heckled not only her but also the guests attending the gala.

Then Sister Sarah attended the Philadelphia Flyers opener, where she dropped the ceremonial first puck. (Not my Puck, I assure you! He says if she becomes VP he's moving back to Scotland!) She was expecting a solid round of booing, and she got it ... except from the high-end ringside seats. However, in order to drown out the jeering, the arena cranked up the music so loud that it was the only thing the audio could pick up. So YouTube doesn't do it justice.

Today's sermon: Are hillbillies racist?

The billboard in the post below was erected in the Ozark Mountain region of Arkansas. And much has been said about this anonymous sign, and what it says about hillbillies.

When most people think of hillbillies, they get a mental picture of Jed Clampett or those scary droolers in Deliverance. Poor, white, racist, violent, inbred. Heard it all.

Except there are black people living all through Appalachia. Are they too hillbillies? Of course they are, because "Appalachia" refers to a region and not a race. There are Asian hillbillies, Native American hillbillies, even Jewish and probably a few Muslim hillbillies. Because Appalachia is a region and not a race, and it covers a lot of ground, including not a few metropolitan areas.

Someone might say, "Well, in order to be a real hillbilly, you have to live on a mountainside." Those people have never been to Cumberland, Maryland -- a city of 25,000, built on several mountainsides. Sizable black population.

Are there racists in Appalachia? Of course. There are racists in Detroit, too. The white race doesn't hold a patent on racism.

Which brings me to a quote I've lifted from my friend Bibi's blog, "Your Wings Are Real." Bibi lives in the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia. She gives this account of her work on behalf of Barack Obama:

"I had an interesting response to my canvassing tonight. I was using the "Neighbor to Neighbor" tool on the Barack Obama website to call people. I wasn't entirely confortable with this -- probably most of my neighbors don't actually want me to know how they're voting, and would probably rather talk to a stranger -- but anyway. I called someone I didn't recognize and asked him how he thought he'd be voting. His response: "Well, we've pretty much decided to vote for that colored boy." I had to ask -- "So you're voting for Barack Obama?" Yes, he is. Well, I guess that's ok!"

"We've pretty much decided to vote for that colored boy."

Are Appalachians a bunch of racists? Or do they look out for their best interests and use old-timey phrases to express themselves? Or is this just one person giving his one opinion, no matter what part of the country he hails from?

At any rate, I'm with Bibi on this. I guess that's ok!

14 comments:

A Wild Celtic Rose said...

I suspect that your Puck not only would not be dropped but would (at the very least) pinch her in the keister at an inopportune moment...

SubtleKnife said...

I wish it HAD been your Puck! *evil glint*

sott'Eos said...

Hillbillies aren't racist. They hold all flatlanders in the same contempt. :-)

yellowdog granny said...

everyone's a racist in some form of another, no matter how much they protest.
one of the old ladies that was a obama delegate from west was asked who she was voting for and she said i'm voting for that obama, I don't care if he is black.'...
sigh*(she's in her 80's)

THE Michael said...

I think we actually have a manchurian candidate. What else could explain how McCain is acting? Like a man who wants to finish the job Bush started? Isn't that exactly what the programmers in Hanoi instructed him to do?

Hey, I can cook up conspiracies with the best of them! hehe.

JaAnBe said...

Yep, just about every part of Cumberland is on a hillside, my front yard, my backyard, the street I drive to work on. We are a community of many races, African-American, Asian, Middle Eastern, European, South American. We are also a community of mixed race persons. Gotta love us.

JaAnBe said...

BTW: on my street the signs are 4:1 Obama : McCain.

BBC said...

Are Appalachians a bunch of racists?

My best guess is that some are and some are not.

BBC said...

I'm part hillbilly so I should know.

Anonymous said...

anne johnson:

Well said. I grew up in Omaha, a city with approximately 90% whites in a state with about 3% whites. It was very racist and sadly, it still seems to be. The racism is not overt a lot of the time, but it's obvious to anyone who wants to look.

Let's face it; racism is the product of fear and ignorance. The McCain Campaign, to their everlasting discredit, has resorted to pandering, finally, to the most dangerous element of the "base"--the concious, deliberate and dangerous racists. Damn them.

democommie

sageweb said...

My Mom still uses the term Colored people..she is an educated woman that teaches at a local college but still is hung up on the old school way of talking. SHe isnt a meaningful racist..she doesnt get that she offends people.

Hillbilly Fairy said...

and now my friend that lives over the mountain tells me that her confederate-flag flying neighbor told her that he's sick of being lied to and is also voting for "That One." I'm wary of the "Bradley Effect" but this so far is sounding pretty genuine.

beweaver said...

I guess for me it gives me HOPE.

Anonymous said...

anne johnson:

that democgraphic info on Omaha and Nebraska should have read "3% black".