Yahoo! News message boards are the anti-Straight Dope

Wow, if you want to see a celebration of ignorance, check out the message boards attached to each story that appears on Yahoo! News. I’ve never seen such an orgy of jingoism, racism, and slurring. Everytime there is a story about the United Nations, every if it is a positive story, there’s a couple of hundred messages along the lines of “Fuck the UN!” The story of the Chinese test rocket a few days ago resulted in messages comparing the rocket to a rice-cooker and pointing out that Chinese wouldn’t make good astronauts because “space dust can get caught in slanty eyes.” Today there is a story on the arrest of pro-democracy activists in Zimbabwe, and already a bunch of racist comments have appeared, many likening the residents of Zimbabwe to apes. WHY ARE STUPID FUCKERS ALLOWED TO USE A COMPUTER?

It’s sad that the Internet age means that every Billy Bob Cousinmarrying Cletus can send his opinion on recent news to thousands of people around the world. It’s small things like these that make me so happy I don’t live in the U.S. anymore (not to say there’s not bigots and all-around idiots in the EU, but I don’t notice them like I notice dumbasses in the U.S.).

But I suppose I’m something of a masochist, reading the Yahoo! boards just so the soothing warmth of Straight Dope ignorance-fighting is all the sweeter.

UnuMondo

I find ironic that you complain about bigotry then use what is basically a slur against southerners, i.e. “Billy Bob Cousinmarrying Cletus”.

I’m not offended or anything (I’m not a southerner), but I found that amusingly ironic.

That’s not a slur against southerners, as I’m from the South myself (Huntsville, Alabama). That’s a epithet against rural-type bigots, which you’ll find in any part of the nation, even in cities.

UnuMondo

UnuMondo, while you’re version is certainly more poetic (and funnier, too), I think the term you are searching for is redneck.

I’m from Alabama, too, (born and bred) and I just want to say that Alabama is a truly beautiful place to live. It would be absolute heaven if we could just get rid of 90% of the people.

I vote for taking up a collection to ship them all to California - the entire state is supposed to fall off in the ocean one of these days anyway, isn’t it?

This is ridiculous, you guys. Complaining about bigotry while freely posting the most insulting stereotypes about the rural poor. Wake up! “Redneck”-bashing is the last acceptable “politically correct” slurring. So you hate them! Fine, but don’t pretend it’s ok to throw around stereotypes and call it “fighting ignorance.” This is the Straight Dope: let’s end that one here first.

Flame me for that one, if you dare.

I was born and raised in the south. I do have to throw in my two cents here: not all rednecks are unwashed, cousin-marrying, moonshine distilling backwoods idiots. My father is a big ol’ redneck, but he is also very intelligent and is also able to carry on a conversation with people who are not so redneck.

As for the OP, what do you expect? Anyone with an ISP and a computer can get on the internet and post whatever they want. Do what I do, just ignore it.

Unu, as a Huntswvillian myself, I’m gonna have to point out that having been born here in the Great Exception hardly makes you likely to be sympathetic to Southerners.

There are actaully quite a few of us dopers here in Huntsville: when did you live here? Did you go to Hgh School /UAH/A&M?

“Great Exception”? Please explain. I’ve never heard that one.

and no, California will not fall into the ocean the issue is plate tectonics - we on the Pacific plate will be fine. It is you on the North American plate who will get wet :stuck_out_tongue:

Well, I made up “Great Exception” HH, but anyone who lived here would know what I am talking about: Huntsville is a very unSouthern city, and prides itself on that fact. The Marshall space flight Center is here, and Redstone arsenal, and a signifigant number of defense contractors: as a result, Huntsville is made up almost entirely of people who moved here from somewhere else or the children of people who moved here from somewhere else. For the same reason, the university diplomas per capita here is the highest in Alabama.

Now, you go five miles out inthe county and you are in the country: there’s no doubt about that. However, it is quite possible to grwo up in Huntsville without any real exposure to “the south”.

What, and miss all that Culture?! :smiley:

(yes, I KNOW I’m going to Hell, thank you)

Manda JO - Thanks for clearing that up - I was getting pure ‘background noise’ of Google

New GAME! ‘Googlewhooshed’!
enter a single search argument which produces over 10 results, none of which have anything in common with the others!

[sub]doing MY part to encourage people to spend their ENTIRE lives at a keyboard…[/sub]

Unumondo, I must be the same kind of masochist, because I keep reading the message boards attached to the Japan Today newspaper. It’s quite a sight: narrow-minded, racist bigots who nonetheless have packed up and moved to the other side of the world to live in another culture surrounded by people completely different from them. Nothing but trolling morons who wouldn’t last five minutes at the SDMB.

Most of the really obnoxious ones, though, are the anime/martial arts freaks still living at home, posting with overwrought usernames such as “American Ronin” and “Master Samurai”.

You mean one of the last. The other is fat-bashing.

yeah! so let’s make fun of tubby!

[sub]i’m 50 pounds overweight. that’s where the “funny” comes from![/sub]

Whoa! I think we are using different definitions for “redneck”. Maybe this is a purely local thing, but around here the definition of “redneck” changed about 30 years ago. Originally “redneck” referred to “ignorant farm boys” and was seen as a label invented by Yankees (yeah, some people were still fighting the Civil War) so they would feel superior to the poor, dumb Southerners. To a certain extent the label was accurate - life was hard for rural Southerners and there was a serious lack of opportunities for education and travel, especially for the young men who often quit school at the earliest opportunity in order to help support their families, and not long afterwards found themselves with a family of their own to support. “Naive” and “uneducated” are better descriptions, but don’t quite have the sting of “ignorant”, do they?

However, during the Martin Luther King/civil rights marches/desegregation years, the definition of “redneck” changed. It began to be used to refer to someone who was ignorant and proud of it, and whose immediate solution to any disagreement was violence. As a matter of fact, there was a running joke around here about the definition of “redneck” based on a real event in our little ‘Dari-Delite’ type restaurant.

A group of high school students that included a black couple had to this little restaurant on a Saturday night outing. An older man who was a well-known drunk and trouble-maker was seated at a nearby table with a group of his friends, and began to loudly toss around racial slurs. Despite the danger, the young black man decided he was going to have to confront the man, but his friends stopped him and one of them loudly remarked, “Don’t pay attention to him, he’s just a damned redneck.” Whereupon the older man leaped to his feet, grabbed something in his jacket pocket, and said, “Who you calling a redneck, boy?”

Since everyone knew that this man frequently carried a pistol, the entire restaurant froze for a minute, expecting bloodshed. The man’s friends grabbed him and quickly hustled him out of the door (meanwhile saying things like “You don’t want to go to prison over some damned nigger, do you?” :rolleyes: )

From then on, around here the definition of “redneck” was someone who would shoot you for calling him one.

Manda JO is right, Huntsville is like a whole 'nother country (I have relatives who live there). Another little “country” all its own is the UAB Hospital, where they do world-class medical research. I only live about 60 miles from Birmingham, but it is practically 19th century around here. Well, just read about Judge Roy Moore, and imagine a town of 15,000 where the majority think he’s a hero!

Montgomerian here, but my girlfriend lives in Huntsville, and in fact, I just drove in from Huntsville a few minutes ago. Trying to unwind with the Dope after the longish drive.

It’s always struck me that Huntsville is a Southern city that desperately wants people to believe that it’s unSouthern. Seething juuuuuust below the cultural event horizon of all the transplanted Yankees and the NASA engineers and the homogenization that’s affecting all Southern cities (including Montgomery, the universal Good Ol’ Boy Network capital) is an underlying heart of unreconstructed South.

If you don’t believe me, take a look up the mountain one night and look at the giant, lit-up concrete cross. Pure South.

Go eat at “Aunt” Eunice’s Kitchen on Andrew Jackson Way one morning and just try to get a blintz. :slight_smile:

Count how many cotton fields you see along the side of 565, in the fertile Tennessee Valley.

Hey coosa, I imagine you live somewhere on the river of the same name. You east or south of Birmingham?

Incidentally, I don’t want to come off as defensive, but I find all this “whole 'nother country” business a trifle overblown. How many other places in Alabama could I name that don’t fit in with the “redneck” stereotype?

I could list artsy neighborhoods, cultural landmarks, (Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Montgomery (the only theater in North America invited to fly the flag of the Royal Shakespeare Company,) Mobile Mardi Gras (the oldest such celebration in the country, and still the coolest,) etc.,) but I don’t really want to give the impression that I’m a Southern Culture Pollyanna.

I just think that representing Alabama as a more-or-less uniform morass of ignorance punctuated by a few bright spots is kinda missing the point.

Actually, I’m south-east. :slight_smile: I don’t really live that close to the Coosa, it’s just a fairly unique name so I can use it in lots of places without any conflicts. Now that I’ve trashed the town, I don’t dare name it, but think ‘NASCAR’ and you’ll figure it out. :smiley:

Maybe I’m just a little burnt out from living in one of the intellectual backwaters. This town is still run by the remnants of the old Dixie Mafia, so it’s probably worse than the average small town in Alabama.

As an interesting aside, the Afrikaans equivalent (“Rooinek”) is used to stereotype Englishmen, having its roots in the Anglo-Boer War, when the British troops were woefully under-prepared for the African climate and ended up getting badly burned on thier necks - hence red-necks…

Sorry, carry on…

Gp

Well I’ll be dipped. coosa, my hometown is about 20 miles from you. Think “caverns” and you’ll have it.

My interpretation of the NASCAR acronym might interest you: Not All Southerners Care About Racing.

I odn’t think I got my point across before: when I talk about Huntsville as being an exception to the South, I don’t mean that it is an exception because it is less ignorant. Tuscaloosa is chock-full of incredibly well educated people, but it is so southern that you can grow sugar crystals by dropping a piece of string in your glass of tea.

Huntsville’s different because it’s full of people who weren’t born here, or whose grandmothers weren’t born here. It’s full of people who don’t expect to die here.

And I have never understood the big deal with Eunice’s. The biscuits were dry and hard.

Ogre, does your girlfriend go/went recently to UAH? (I have this compulsive thing about identifying people from Huntsville, as it really is a pretty small town)

**

Fair enough. I misunderstood you, then. I hold to the belief that Huntsville really is a Southern city in its soul, despite the veneer of Yankeedom. :slight_smile:

**

Note that I never said that Eunice’s food was good, just that it was Southern, at least in presentation and spirit. I personally can’t believe that ol’ Eunice has the cojones to charge that much for what is essentially Waffle House food anyway.

Nope. She got her masters in Tuscaloosa a couple of years ago and moved to Huntsville to take a job with Sirsi. We have at least one other Doper who works for them as well. I’m stuck for the time being in Montgomery, but I’m trying desperately to escape. I’m currently applying for a job at Russell Cave National Monument in Jackson County. What do you do, and why haven’t you or coosa ever been to a BamaDope? :slight_smile: