I survive in a small ugly coal town. My husband jokes that I am so far to the left that I have a red star tattoo on my forehead and that I am looking for "fellow travelers." We stay in the futile hope of helping.

When the kid that cuts my grass, or the old guy who has been educated/brainwashed by the mine operators, is in my home, I love to play my liberal radio or TV. Just when my guest gets into the groove of hearing views they have never heard before, the "progressive" talk show host uses a mountain/southern accent to indicate idiocy, or uses “trailer trash” or "hillbilly." The "progressive" has stimulated suspicion and hostility in the very people for whom he purports to have compassion - the poor and downtrodden. He has become an "elitist" without compassion. Glen Beck could not have done it more effectively, and somewhere in Hell, a neocon gets his smoldering lump of coal as a reward.

A man who recently spoke with Thom in defense of coal mining said something like, "I know you think we are all stupid." "Progressives" contribute to that idea at their peril.

I cannot help but think that those who equate stupidity with accent, geography, or poverty must be the same people who used the “n” word in years past.

And stop burning our mountains. After all, it is the people who own our mountains - (they must live there, because they don’t live here) - who need us to be stupid. That makes it easier to take our stuff, doesn’t it?

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reed9's picture
reed9 4 years 27 weeks ago
#1

I've been guilty of doing the same thing in the past and all I can say is...you're absolutely correct. I've also noted that when I hear a "hill billy" accent, my initial unthinking reaction is to assume the speaker is 1) uneducated, and 2) a tea party sympathizer. It takes a certain amount of conscious effort to reject those stereotypes and actually listen to what is being said and judge based on the content of the speech. I hate that about myself. I'm glad you're spreading awareness of that and challenging those assumptions. Thank you.

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