For those who don’t subscribe to Newsweek, journalist Christopher Dickey has written an excellent article on Modern South (which is of course a Palimpsest of Old South and Middle South as well available here. He basically retraces Sherman’s March (East Tennessee to Atlanta to Savannah and up through the Carolinas with a stopover in North Georgia), largely to discuss people’s political opinions on Obama/McCain and compare/contrast the changes in his lifetime and before.
I don’t agree with all of his points and haven’t experienced all of his observations (I’ve seen plenty of McCain 2008 bumper stickers). I also admit to being irked that his accompanying photographer had to include a picture of a KKK outfit (one from a museum managed by an old nut biker white supremacist in north Georgia- this would be like doing an “A day in the life of New England” article and going into the home of a xenophobic crank in Maine to take a pic of a “Blow up the Kittery Bridge Now!” poster and pretending it’s just something you came across), but has good points and interesting observations throughout. He talks about the recent additions of millions of “browns” to the blacks and whites who’ve dominated Southern society for 400 years (when I was in public school in the early 80s we only had one Spanish speaking family [not counting exchange students] and they were rich [refugees from Nicaragua- I’m guessing big shots under Somoza who fled when he did], but my cousin who teaches in the Bama public schools now has one class where non U.S. born students, most of them from poor families, are about a quarter of the class and Spanish is heard in the halls and lunchroom everyday).
Anyway, would be curious to read what other Dopers, southern or non, thought of the article.
[SIZE=1]I’d be remiss in not mentioning Christopher Dickey’s last name, which is “the son of Deliverance author James Dickey”. One of the lighter moments was his description of seeing the “When you hear banjos row faster!” bumper stickers in the north Georgia mountains, a region that’s gone from shacks and hillbillies to upscale tourist cabins and gourmet dining since the book was written.