The Redneck doth protest too much, methinks
I have noticed recently, and over the past year really, complaining about the Black Lives Matter protests in particular. I just have to get somethings off my chest, so let the rant begin…
Please shut up about various protestors “needing a job”. We didn’t hear a thing from you when collective local trash decided to tumble down the highway with a flag strapped to the back, front, or side of their vehicle. I’m sure they took time out of their busy schedules to drive to Wal-Mart blaring Kid Rock and blowing their horn every other weekend in such a truly important social movement. Piss off. You couldn’t get off of your ass for anything that isn’t dumbed down to something you can’t physically touch. No ideas. No real cause. Only conjured-up outrage about a flag you know nothing about, a war you know even less of, and a “heritage” you’re not familiar with predating your grandmother who said the N-word a lot.
We all understand it’s your “blankie”. While you probably didn’t give a damn about the flag before, when Wally World stops selling it and it is removed from a state capitol you’ve probably never seen or will ever see, it’s suddenly this huge fight to preserve your “way of life”. Can you be anymore full of shit? The reason why you’re upset is that here in the South, among whites, being called racist or having any connection to anything that is racist is far more offensive than racism itself. To be fair, you probably have no idea about the history behind this flag. Nor do you know one iota about the war, slavery, and the laws that came after were just slavery by another name. Without knowing that, you couldn’t possibly know about the effect that has had on minority communities and the residual laws that are still around today, in 2015. How could you? Many schools around here teach things like abstinence-only sex-ed and that evolution is an unfounded theory, a hoax or a trick by Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior who sprinkled dinosaur fossils around to test our faith. It’s not hard to conclude that the version of historical events that you were taught is the neo-confederate War of Northern Aggression that has fueled so much ignorance in this country. In this fictional version of events slavery is barely a footnote. Never mind the fact that slavery was listed as the primary reason for secession by every seceding state and explicitly mentioned by Alexander Stephens, the Vice President of the Confederacy, in his Cornerstone Speech just a few weeks before the South attacked the North. The Confederacy, according to this revised version of history, was also a melting pot of blacks, native Americans, hispanics, etc. fighting for just causes that totally had nothing to do with anything concerning ensuring the existence of white supremacy, slavery, and subjugation of these very same people. Never mind the fact that this is a recent neo-conservative myth and that the Confederate Army had a very strict policy that prohibited all non-whites from serving. The list of bullshit goes on and on, but I digress..
I understand that you live in an alternate political and social world from the rest of us that feeds your ignorance as you fall further down the well of oblivion. Your doses of political information come in the form of those rants against Obama your mommy or daddy probably make at least once a day. Outside of that it’s pretty much posts from whatever far-right pages you liked because they sounded a lot like home. Like a modern-day, rabidly conservative Dorthy, you tap your heels together when you see the racist lunacy dumbed down into a cool meme that stirs nostalgia of those simpler people and you remember there’s no place like home. You probably don’t read the articles, though. If what you’re really feelin’ can be put on a meme Uncle Jim shared from some facebook page called something like “I’m not racist but these blacks need to know there place” or even less subtly bigoted pages like “Donald Trump for President”, all the better. Even though I work in the political area, most of us can write your manifesto on important social and political issues as well as you could. It cant be spotted a mile away by anyone even slightly socially conscious. It’s not hard to guess once we see that you live in an individually tailored conservative realm, a virtual one because heaven forbid you actually do something productive in the real world, whose prime concern and objective is spreading as many memes as possible with unmeasured importance. You know, ones like promoting everyone speaking whatever it is you call english, some completely fabricated new gun law with Hitler’s picture attached, anything really stupid that also says ” the white house wants removed from the internet”, and the always present photo-shopped picture of Michelle Obama doing something like flashing her vagina to a civil war veteran in Bethlehem while texting during the pledge sung by a blind little white girl who is a descendent of George Washington and John the Baptist. That’s, of course, when she’s not personally slapping fries out of your kids mouth at school. Those are fine examples, just to name a few. You’re not that hard to peg down. The bad news is that you’re likely a lost cause. Ignorance has a tipping-point for so many and far too many young people around here reach it in their teens.
However, just because others don’t ascribe to the denial, naiveté, and incomprehension you call “being informed”, it doesn’t mean they’re lazy people. They just happen to be protesting things you don’t care about because of your mental incapacity with any important issue. You scoff and criticize people fighting for social justice and against social ills. You’re no different that the ones that have done the same to the civil rights movement, suffrage movement, LGBT movement, or any movement that has advanced this country socially. You’re irrelevant. Not even a footnote in history. You’ll just whine and moan while the rest of us march on past you. I just wanted you to know that before I go on.
Even as irrelevant as you are, I am begging and pleading for your forgiveness for those of us who actually give a shit about things that actually matter in this country and took a little time to give those things a tiny bit of support. Until you can find it in your heart to forgive us, will you please keep your ridiculous condescending comments to a minimum? Or maybe, just maybe, expand your knowledge of political issues, social issues, and history beyond whatever meme or idiotic rant you saw on Facebook. It would do us all a favor. Maybe then you wouldn’t belittle people and actions that you don’t have the mental compass to grasp or testicular fortitude to participate in. (Sorry, riding down the highway in your truck wooohoooo’ing blasting Skynard isn’t up there with the Selma to Montgomery March or Gandhi’s fasting). No, you couldn’t be bothered with any real problem around here. Not the lack of access to medical care. Not the high poverty rates, especially among children. Not the perpetual poverty across the board or extremely high unemployment. Not the bullying epidemic. Not the living conditions of our senior citizens. Nothing. Nothing at all that would actually help a single person in this area, this state, or country. But a flag? Yet, that gets your toes tapping and the blood flowin’ in your groin.
As we know, according to many people around here and in the South in general, racism isn’t a problem. It died right after MLK suddenly retired because of the lack of racism. The thing that’s actually a problem, the real issue that’s offensive to these people, is actually the accusation of racism. That’s right. Being called a racist here is far more offensive than racism itself. No, the racist diatribe that guy from high school wrote on Facebook prefaced with “not a racist bone in my body” before he proceeded to spew moronic stereotypes, generalizations, assumptions on the feelings of a race that he’s lucky to see once in public every three months of so, how he lives with the chains and shackles created by the existence of BET and Black History month, and topped off with “all lives matter” except for those “animal thugs” who need to pull their pants up….is not racist at all. Calling out racism seems to be the only form of racism that exists here. So, we get it. We get that when you’re so incredibly oblivious to the current racial and social issues in this country, the history and impact of those issues over the last 150 years, and your denial of the white supremacy that still exists in this country and has also created the bubble of white privilege you live in, that you need these defense mechanisms. Aside from those memes where a random black person is holding a Confederate flag, you really need to show how not racist you are by constantly flying a symbol of it all under the fabricated notion of “heritage”. You’re just trying to simply defend your “southern” way of life. So, strapping that rag to the back of your pick-up and fiercely and unrelentingly blathering on Facebook all day about how racist you and your symbol of “heritage” aren’t racist, is all the right amount of activism needed that will undoubtably do absolutely nothing for your cause and even less for the area. An area you’ve lived your entire life in and needs actual activism. While your attempts to deny the history and contemporary injustice isn’t convincing us, it’s surely convincing you. You’re totally right according to you and the jackasses that amen your social media sermons. That’s all that matters though, right?
Lastly, I just want to conclude with stating that while I support these very important movements you ignorantly mock and criticize, I support your cause too. I am not in favor of banning Confederate flags whatsoever. There’s nothing that makes me happier than seeing one strapped to the back of a truck going down the highway. I get smile on my face when I see it on a shirt or hat in passing at store or walking on the sidewalk. Why? Well, it’s not because I support it personally. Your blankie is still the awful symbol of hate to me, regardless of how many memes you have to the contrary. No, it isn’t that. It’s just that it’s the best thing that could happen for us mature adults who must interact with others in the real world. Those flags, to many of us you see, are nothing but a less subtle “I’m a dumbass” sign blowing in the wind or stuck to the sweaty back of some redneck. It screams ignorance of history and issues of different races, cultures, and ethnicities. It also more than hints at the racism you probably harbor whether you know/admit to it or not. The fact that you all have decided to plaster it all over youself and everything you own lets the rest of us know that we can just not acknowledge or waste any time with you. A person with it stretched across their manboobs walking in our general direction? I think I’ll go the other way. They want to talk, maybe just ask for the time? Nope. I’m all friended up and only tell my friends what time it is. See one hanging off of a vehicle? You already know they’re probably headed to Wal-mart to congregate or their sisters house to procreate so you know that you won’t have to see them for long. You also have a heads-up that they may have no idea what they’re doing behind a wheel and it might be best to keep a few car lengths back. The have a habit of letting Jesus and Natty Ice take the wheel.
See? It’s wonderful and lives could be saved. It’s a convenient time-saver which is always great whether we’re on our way to a meaningful protest, a place of higher learning, or one of those jobs you think we don’t have. This is why I fully support your right to fly those flags on your person or private property. I just wish all of the backwards people everywhere would volunteer this information so visibly. Hell, I wish you tattooed those stars and bars on your forehead. Homophobic? Christian extremist? Anti-immigrant? Republican? Well, hmmm, a confederate flag would probably work for all of those too. So please, please, I beg you to keep flyin’ em high! I think this is what they meant when they said the South would rise again. Not really economically or militarily, or anything progressive for sure. No. More like “Will the real slimy racist crybaby please stand up?” and they’re finally doing it. Maybe now we can finally identify the sheet-less bigots, ostracize them, and at last have some peace and progress. Doesn’t it sound glorious?! Oh how I wish I was in that Dixie, Hooray! Hooray!