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"Fuck the South"?

Kelly linked today to this site, a vitriolic lambasting of the American “South”. As the rant included some links, I followed them to see what they had to say.

Most interesting to me were:

  • this article that states that Massachusetts has the lowest divorce rate in the nation, while the highest divorce rates are to be found in the South. The article lists some possible reasons; the one I found most compelling was “Southern states have a lower percentage of Roman Catholics, ‘a denomination that does not recognize divorce'”, though the age and education reasons also make sense;
  • this comparison of federal taxes paid versus federal tax money spent, which is drawn from this report. If you look at all the states, you can’t say that Northern states lose and Southern states win across the board, but the numbers are still interesting;
  • this piece about the Second Amendment and how its meaning has been defined in court; and
  • this article stating that the South has the highest murder rates in the nation.

There are lots of things I love about Georgia, and the South in general. My opinion is based more on people, and impressions, than it is on facts and figures. I have to say that there are some people and some impressions I’ve had here that I don’t care for, but you can say the same about any place. In regards to the people, sometimes it’s just because I don’t understand the culture. (Yes, I’m from Kentucky. Whether Kentucky is vastly different from the rest of the South, or it’s because my mom’s from Michigan and Illinois, or it’s just that I have trouble grasping social situations in general, who knows.)

Anyway, at this point I’m just feeling a little confused…I’m not at a point where I want to renounce the South, nor do I want to say that these articles are complete hogwash. Grain of salt time, as usual…but I’m kind of worried that I’ll never make a decision on this. Of course, I have no idea what kind of decision I need to make, and what point there would be in making a decision anyway…

All I really know is that right now, I don’t hate anyone, north or south (or west, or out in the Pacific, or waaaaaay up there next to Canada, or whatever). I think every place will have its positives and negatives, and every place is worth visiting and learning about. That obviously goes for places outside of the U.S., too.

I don’t know if I will ever know enough to decide what’s best for everyone. In some ways it’s safer this way, because then I won’t feel so helpless when I can’t do what I feel needs to be done…but at the same time, I think there is something to be said for being confident in your convictions. And really, where world events are concerned, I’m confident’s opposite.