Ignorance on parade: read the following comment from a dissident-right blog, by one ‘anonymous’, in which an urban Northeasterner vilifies and slanders Southrons. Nobody replies, at least as of now.
One thing which truly riles me is when someone spouts lies and unfounded assertions, and nobody takes issue with any of it. Surely somebody from the South read this person’s diatribe, but evidently felt no need to respond. I know that many people from the U.S. read the blog in question, many, from the South. As for why I don’t respond on the blog myself, Blogger rejects 99 percent of my attempted comments on their blogs. Blogger is not my friend.
Anonymous’s comment illustrates the real animus that many people from outside the South feel towards Southrons. It constitutes real prejudice, meaning that it’s a viewpoint formed from hearsay, false information, and from pre-existing, visceral dislike rather than from wide, firsthand experience. ‘Anonymous’ begins his slur-fest against the South by saying ‘no offense to Southerners…’ and then lets fly a long list of disparaging assertions about the South and its people, past and present.
I’ve said before that I descend from both Yankees and from Southrons, so I know both peoples and regions well. I am “bilingual”, being familiar not only with Southern speech and dialects but also Northern, having grown up with both. I’ve been to all corners of these United States and lived on three of this country’s coasts: the Gulf Coast, the Atlantic, and the Pacific. I’ve lived in urban areas, the suburbs, and small towns, even in a little hamlet of a few hundred souls. There’s no particular pride in having lived in disparate places; many nomadic Americans in our day have lived similarly.
But I do know North and South better than this Anonymous person, whose words bespeak the arrogance and smugness — and insularity — of an urban northeasterner. Nobody, in my experience, is more provincial and insular than a New Yorker, born and bred. To them, the world is bounded by the East and Hudson Rivers; beyond which ‘there be monsters’ or at least backward yokels who are decidedly inferior. Many native New Yorkers have never been outside the State or the Northeast, unless they travel to Europe or some exotic destination, perhaps to the homelands of their recent immigrant families.
The commenter describes Southerners as ‘backwards and inherently ignorant.’ I am aware that some statistics on IQ scores by state show the Southern states as at the bottom. But I would bet that if the scores of Southern Whites — or native born Southern Whites — were compiled separately, we would see something very different. Some of the stats showing states like Mississippi at the bottom of the list reflect the large percentage of blacks in that state, likewise the other states at the bottom. In this study California, New Mexico, and Mississippi were at the bottom. Two of those states are not Southern, obviously, and the third, Mississippi, is about 38 percent black. California is a very ‘diverse’ state, meaning more nonwhite, populated by many Latinos, blacks, Middle Easterns and Asians.
Subtract the nonwhites and non-Southrons (the many, many Yankees who’ve moved to the South though they probably look down on the native people of that region) and then see the Southern IQ scores climb. As to why the Northeast has a higher IQ average despite the presence there of so very many low-IQ third-worlders, I have no explanation for that. Maybe the presence of so many high-achieving Whites from various regions who moved to the Northeast for career reasons? Or so many Ashkenazi Jews who purportedly have the highest IQs?
Ignorant people from the South? Maybe the writers of our founding documents, who were well-educated and highly literate people — like Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, George Mason, and so many others? ‘Anonymous’ and his many counterparts out there have seen too many anti-Southern movies and TV shows.
Anonymous makes a sweeping statement that Southrons hate Northerners. He says that Northern whites are not welcome in the rural South. Having lived in the rural South, I say that’s exaggeration. Once upon a time the people of the South remembered, through their grandparents or great-grandparents accounts of how the Yankee soldiers swept through our land destroying, raping, killing, and looting. This is a matter of record and fact; it is not falsehood.
If the South had done that to the North, then perhaps the North’s seeming hatred for the South would be justified, too. But this didn’t happen. No great city of the North was burned to the ground.
There was no Rebel army on a ‘march to the sea’ in the North, destroying all in their path. No northern cities, those Towers-of-Babel, were razed, there was no widespread crop destruction to cause starvation, nor stealing of the crops and foodstuffs to feed the ravenous invading army — which by the way, was a rabble containing many, many immigrants, drafted to fight for Abe.
And when so many Yankees, even those who move to the South, display at best condescension, or at the very least, disregard for the rightful people of that region, their culture and way of life, can you wonder that some of them resent this and show it? What is really remarkable is that the Southern people, with a tradition of openness, courtesy, and hospitality, are usually friendly towards Northerners, even Northern transplants. I say Anonymous has never been South of the Mason-Dixon line, or if he has, his arrogant attitude brought unfriendly reactions.
Anonymous goes on to ridicule the Southern dialect — which, by the way, is dying out, thanks to the media and their ‘midlands’ Yankee accent. But to many of us, the upper Midwest accent, with its nasal harshness, is more than grating to the ears, or the New Yoahk urban accent, with its ethnic variations. It’s all relative to what one grows up with.
But anyone who says that Southern Whites sound just like blacks has no ear whatsoever, or is too lazy to discern the very obvious differences. Anybody, North or South, would, if honest, say that they can tell a black speaker on the phone versus a White Southron. Anybody. The accents are decidedly not the same, the vocabulary is not the same. And voice timbres are very distinct between black and White speakers. You don’t have to be a dialect/speech expert to discern one from the other. Black people themselves can tell the difference. Anybody who can’t tell needs the services of an audiologist or a hearing aid.
Anonymous is just flinging one last insult, one which he expects will be a stinging insult to Southern Whites. He doesn’t even believe what he says.
His parting remark about how Southern Whites ‘should have picked their own cotton’ — oh, what a witty and original remark! Touche! Why hasn’t someone come up with that barb before?
Actually, the fact is that Whites, especially the recent English colonists in Virginia and the other Southwestern colonies, did pick their own crops until the slaves arrived (via a Dutch ship, or through Jewish traders as some insist) and there was a high mortality rate amongst colonists through heat stroke, and tropical diseases; malaria and the like. The colonists from the British Isles were ill-adapted to the scorching heat and high humidity of the Southern colonies, whereas the African slaves were well-adapted to it, hence less susceptibility to the heat and disease.
Then there is the simple, obvious fact that many White people did pick their own cotton; if they could not afford slaves or chose not to employ slaves they did pick their own crops, cotton included. Up until modern times, especially post-emancipation, many, many poor Whites picked cotton and did all the backbreaking stoop labor we associate (pityingly, of course) with black slaves. Many poor Southern Whites suffered greater hardships and suffering than blacks. And they did not have do-gooding Northern ‘altruists’ crying over their plight. No, it was the Northerners who agitated for the war and who were hellbent on emancipating millions of slaves who were not in any way prepared for freedom, and damn the consequences.
One last truth: Anonymous and his ilk think that slavery was practiced only in the South. Before Northerners got abolition fever, they too had slaves, black slaves. Some of my Northern ancestors had slaves, and this is known through the records, through their wills. Slavery was not unique to the South. How can any adult American not know this fact?
Since people like ‘Anonymous’ have nothing but contempt and disdain for the South and its people, then let the South go. But I believe people like this would gladly unleash an invading army against the South once again, and kill masses of people, just to force the South to come back.
The Union can’t continue to hold with these kinds of differences and resentments. And that is probably for the best.