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Old 12-11-2019, 11:09 PM
nelliebly is offline
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Washington
Posts: 2,796
Originally Posted by Try2B Comprehensive View Post
Well, my view stems from recent conversations with a friend of mine with a lot of red state relatives- not very scientific, but his theory is that rural folks have been getting shit on for a long long time and are boiling over with resentment. People call 'em sister-fuckers and yokels and all of that kind of thing, and they're provoked. Reading Mencken's Monkey Trial essays for me anyway lends weight to be his theory- the author is right about evolution, sure, but he excoriates the population of Tennessee so ruthlessly that by the end, I had some sympathy for the Bible-beaters. One Can go too far.

I dunno. I think they should really be mad at the arch-capitalists, they're the ones sending the jobs overseas, wrecking unions and all that, and I don't think they or a lot of things for that matter fit neatly into one of two "sides". Whatever, that is what propaganda is for. I figure a clear-eyed approach can lead us to solutions to common problems and no group or region really has to be left out... but that runs into the current anti-intellectualism and we devolve into this dumb culture war between sides. I think that's counter productive and in the way, as everyone is just people, they won't always make sense.

Anyway, people have a lot of problems and I just don't think hating them will lead to progress.
Hey, I lived in one of the reddest and the most pro-Trump state per capita in the country for a very long time, and I have to disagree somewhat with your friend's take on things. It's NOT a one-way street. People there laughed and scoffed at outsiders who wanted to know if kids rode horses to school or assumed everyone went to a one-room schoolhouse and and had to dodge tumbleweeds to cross Main Street. Silly city folk (or easterners or their favorite target, Californians)! The rage your friend talks about has been fed to them, and not by Mencken who, for God's sake, has been dead over 60 years and whom very few of them have ever heard of.

I agree that hatred won't result in progress, but for that to happen, you have to stop the flow of propaganda reenforcing the ol' US vs. Them mindset. That would mean no Fox News or MSNBC. It would mean recognizing how certain media outlets manipulate their audiences. Most of all, it would mean convincing people that they're going to have to undergo the painful process of recognizing that what they want to believe and what is true are two different things. Good luck with that.