Friday, March 16, 2012

The South

In Pharmacy College we learned about certain botanical substances classified as excrescences. Ergot is one. It is a fungus growing on certain grains. An excrescence could be a wart or tumor, an abnormal proliferation of tissue. John Dean famously said to Richard Nixon that the Watergate skullduggery was a cancer on his presidency. This is the way I feel about the South; an excrescence, a barnacle on the body politic.

Why don’t they just secede, and declare themselves another Third World country, another planet, another species? With their guns and gospel they speak the language of unreason, blame and punishment. These are the haters of government, of intellect and science. Their head is filled with Rush and his feral Foxes. Why are they still fighting the Civil War which they call, Mr. Lincoln’s War? Honestly Abe, you should have freed those in bondage and let the states go their way.

Without the South as our underbelly this country would continue the Enlightenment, elect Deists, champion reproductive rights, properly fund stem cell research, teach real as opposed to fake Science, encourage full participation in elections.

I know they gave us novelists like Faulkner, Wolfe, Reynolds Price and Carson McCullers, and playwrights, Horton Foote and Tennessee Williams. They had stories to tell of race, repression, aberrant behavior and deranged bible-thumpers. Why, then, are Southerners so malevolent and gullible? Why do they murder abortion doctors, fire-bomb Black churches and care more about the un-born than the born?

They are still the old Confederacy. Solid as they were when FDR made a Faustian pact to let them lynch, burn crosses and maintain Apartheid in return for their vote. They are a region descended from pathological racists, still infected and taking aim at our president.

They stained our nation with the abomination of slavery and now shame us in this new century dragging us back to an imagined time when everybody knew their place. As a voting block they oppose unions, environmental standards, gender equality, full enfranchisement and fair taxes.

When Rush Limbaugh spews his bigotry and misogynist rants no one denounces him. Advertisers flee this virulent buffoon yet the Red State Republicans give their tacit approval because he apparently speaks for good ole Dixie. If Afghanistan has stood still for 1500 years, the American South seems also to be stuck in a time warp of its own, since our inception. Fundamentalists shake hands with Fundamentalists.

Y’all go, ya here! You brought us Bush and Rove, Perry and Huckabee and Sarah Palin. Don’t you know when you are being pandered and lied to? Iraq was not responsible for 9-11. Obama is not a Muslim born in Kenya. He did not raise gasoline prices or taxes. He is not taking away your Medicare or Social Security. He did not bail out the banks. He is drilling now more than ever before. He is one of us; one of our best and brightest.

If, in November, the South prevails with its malignant, antebellum agenda we shall become a nation, never more divided. One founded on rational, democratic principles, the other an excrescence.


  1. That about says it. They can live on their tobacco.
    (But can we keep New Orleans? )

  2. Yes, yes...we need New Orleans. Send it up the Mississippi at once.