As I watch the craziness pervading the thinking, legislation and intellectual infantilism  in the American South, I think it might have been better that the Union had lost the Civil War that began 150 years ago this month. That abysmal chunk of  geography could have been pruned and cast off as Neverland — one more troubled Third World sovereignty.

 It would be a bottom-feeding country of its own tragic making — probably a theocracy with the feudalism of plantation life, rich barons and a repressed lower class. Infected by toxic conservatism and the entitlement of greed, the South has long been an anomaly.

The South has always been the dead weight, the blight, the embarrassment of the United States of America.  If we had two separate nations today — the United States of America and the Confederate States of America — we would have to build fences to keep the economically depressed and persecuted people from fleeing into Ohio, Illinois, Iowa and the American West in quest of  a better life.   The drownings in the Ohio and Mississippi rivers from those seeking to get out of the CSA would be formidable.

The South is hopelessly beleaguered by the cockeyed politics that emanate from so many lawmakers who now come from places like Florida, Mississippi and South Carolina.   Guns, gays and God permeate the woeful conversations of these mostly Red states infected by  their Republican crap.  We laugh and cry again and again at what misguided decisionmakers drum up in these states.

A good example is a bill in the Tennessee Senate called the “Don’t Say Gay Bill,” a proposal that would ban teachers from speaking about or providing any information about homosexuality before students are in high school.  The only sexual orientation that could be discussed would be heterosexuality, lest some youngster learned about homosexuality and decided to be gay.  This is the same bizarre logic to never tell a child about left-handed people lest she become left-handed.

I have long suspected the South’s pathetic condition stems from the original structure that created the two classes of the  haves and have-nots.  Add to that the pervasiveness of  simplistic religion, primarily Baptist, which is so steeped in authoritarianism and black/white thinking. The South has been out of the mainstream of progressive thinking, especially missing the great universities that practice critical and intellectual exercise.

The South has been the land of the good ‘ol boys, homophobia, anti-ERA, segregation, brainless Southern belles and Tea Party fanatics.   Conservatism flourishes in the South especially because it thrives in an under-educated crowd who are all to powerless to confront and reject the tripe that their politicians dish out.

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