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My local National Public Radio station is in the middle of its frequent pledge drives.  The other day, after a segment on “Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me” in which a proper English actor who appears in “Dowerton Abbey” was asked about the American television program “Honey Boo Boo” (which by the way he answer all three question correctly), the station broke to a fund raising appeal.  One of those on air voices said so assuredly and with a slight hint of irony proudly proclaimed, “she knew nothing of who or what Honey Boo Boo.”  I only know of “Honey Boo Boo” by what I have read, I have never seen the program about a poor white family in Georgia whose daughter appears in beauty contest.

The comment of NPR on air voice and her apparent disdain of whatever “Honey Boo Boo” is; reflects the divide within our nation.  Her attitude is reflective of those of us who live along the east or west coast, who are well educated, who consider ourselves progressive in thought and action, who despite all our rhetoric look at those like Honey Boo Boo with distain.  Or as a rather snobbish friend of the family once exclaimed, “You know he is not like us, he is from the crouch of America.”  He was speaking about a very well educated man who was born and raised in Nebraska, but since he was from the Midwest he was not like us on the East Coast.

This also explains the politics of our day on issues ranging from Gun Control, Obama Care, and affirmative action.  Whereas those living along the East and West Coast can find legitimate reasons for restriction on gun ownership, or why we need Obama Care, or even the need for affirmative action.  For those like Honey Boo Bo and here family the words of the constitution are clear “you can own guns, there ain’t no need for the guvment to tax me for health care, hell I just eat and do what I please, ain’t no guvment going to tell what to do, hell all affirmative action is giving my job to someone who don’t deserve it.”

Poor whites, which Honey Boo Bo represents, see the elites of the East and West Coast as ruining this nation, taking us away from our roots.  There is a divide in our nation, a divide as wide as the Mississippi, a divide which threatens the very soul of our nation.

 

One thought on “The American Divide

  1. A few thoughts, in no particular order, for your consideration:

    NPR has a number of revenue streams but most folks know that NPR could easily commercially compete with ClearQuest, EIB, and other radio networks. The radio fundraiser you listened to cost the US taxpayer a lot of cash. The snottiness of the hostess is par for the course for someone insulated from competition – her income assured, she resembles the apparatchik of 100 countries.

    Honey Boo Boo is done on a shoe-string budget, with a crew of less than twenty, and it raises a lot of money for next to nothing. Honey Boo Boo, and her family, are living what we once called “The American Dream.” Try doing that elsewhere in the world. Try seeing NPR even consider it.

    As for poor whites, I get it. My wife and kids live in Oklahoma while I am here for work. Originally, I am from Springfield, Virginia, and the wife spent most of her life in southern California(she is originally from Texas). We’ve lived in Europe, visited the Far East and Mideast and Africa, and some 25 countries between us. We’ve been all of the US of A. The knowledge of the American people and its culture is a treasure.

    Yes, the people out there in Oklahoma make less money, and spend their days working from before sunup to after sundown, go to church twice a week, love their football, NASCAR, hunting and Honey Boo Boo. They survive even as they hover around poverty level. They do and they do not value education. They speak English because there are 60 languages spoken in the state, 56 of which are Native American. English, even poorly spoken, unites them. Coasters ignore that – it isn’t PC, it isn’t cool, and all things considered, NPR can’t consider it.

    You colloquialisms aside, there are vestigeal customs that remain in the midwest that are extinct on the East and West coasts. One is honoring your promise, and things like contracts. The law is representative of social contracts between citizens – those selected to govern, and those who don’t govern.

    The main social contract in the US of A is the US Constitution. Besides being THE law of the land, it is also THE social contract between American citizens. When East and West Coasters seek violate the social contract through arbitrary changes, especially changes that are counterintuitive and altruistic (such as the foolish notion that outlaws will obey the laws), there’s a bit of anger.

    Okies, Texans, and folks up and down the midwest live with the cutesy-pie arbitrary laws designed to help urban coasters deal with a specific problem. Strict adherence to Federalism would permit the coasters to continue their headlong dash to be the Babylon of Revelations without involving the core of America, or destroying the Constitution.

    Coasters, in their hubris, forgot a primary law of nature: the law of predators. They also forget, but Honey Boo Boo proves, you don’t need government welfare to survive and thrive – just freedom.

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