Dumbed Down and Fired Up – Politics in the South

I’ve got some bad news for my Southern friends who long for “the good ole’ days”.

The South is not going to rise again.

At least not at the rate things are going now.

And the way I see it, they’ve only got themselves to blame. In this day and age, with vast amounts of verifiable information at ones fingertips, there’s simply no excuse for people to remain ignorant. None.

Contrary to what you might see on reality television shows like Honey Boo Boo and Duck Dynasty, the south is not full of a bunch of toothless, ignorant, hillbillies, and rednecks wearing rebel flag tee-shirts with brass jack-balls dangling from the back of their pickup trucks.  There are actually quite a few educated, well informed, open-minded folks here. Many have college educations and surprisingly, some of the smartest and open-minded among them, don’t.

As always, as is any area, it is the least educated who are targeted and exploited by predator politicians. They prey on the most vulnerable people via their emotions, using fear to keep them living in poverty and suffering while convincing them that it’s their patriotic duty to do so. They use their love of God, country, and family against them while they continue to keep them from the prosperity they’ve rightfully earned for over 2 centuries. And sadly, they’ve convinced these same people that it’s what’s best for them.

Southerners are incredible people. They have an iron resolve and an ability to get through crisis and hardship unlike anything I’ve ever seen.  And it doesn’t matter who you are or where you’re from, when the going gets tough they don’t hesitate to reach out and help others.

They’ll “bless your heart” and send you on your way with whatever it is you need regardless if they like you or not. They’re polite and hospitable. It’s engrained in them and that’s not a bad thing. It’s’ what Southerners are known for.

I’ve learned that Southerners are fiercely loyal to their families, their churches, and their communities. Southerners are very resourceful and utilize everything they have in one way or another and although you won’t find a bunch of Harvard M.B.A.’s sitting on their front porches as you drive down the road, the people you do meet have generation’s worth of knowledge that can’t be found in any books.  

I once spent two hours with an elderly neighbor and came away with more knowledge about tomato plants than I would have had I taken a horticulture class.  And since then, my garden has done fabulous! 

My gosh, some of these folks could solve the food shortage, agriculture, irrigation and other related problems in the world in about 3 hours if politicians would just come pull up a chair and sit on the front porch for a few hours and LISTEN.

And THAT’S the problem.

The politicians in these southern states arrogantly believe that they are actually smarter than some of these people, when in reality, they aren’t. They’ve scared their constituency into submission and compliance even to the point of convincing them to make choices that work against the best interest of themselves and their families using misinformation and outright lies. They’ve turned them against their neighbors and friends in an effort to convince them that those that think differently are their enemy. In reality, it is the politicians that are the wolves in sheep’s clothing.

I’ve talked to my southern friends, but more importantly, I’ve listened. I hear the fear that’s been instilled in them through TV pundits, preachers, and politicians that diabolically use certain issues to distract these people while they ravage everything they hold dear.

The politicians in the south have exploited the fears and ignorance of some of these people to the point of ALMOST no return. They have robbed them of prosperity and security by using the things they love the most against them.

They’ve scared them into believing that if they don’t do it the way they tell them to do it, the bad guys on the “other side” are going to change things SO drastically that life will NEVER be the same and they’ll lose everything they’ve ever loved and while they’re telling them this and distracting them with issues that emotionally fire them up, they’re slowly losing everything to the same predator politicians who keep warning of impending doom.

Fire ‘Em Up!

Predator politicians in the south know how to play their constituency like a well-tuned violin. They ALWAYS come armed with a Bible. ALWAYS. They know that the BEST way to get the God fearing folks in their Bible-Belt districts emotionally fired up is to use religion. And they have it down to a science. 

The best way to control people is by PREVENTING them from gaining too much knowledge. True believers KNOW that God can NOT be taken from them! The smart ones KNOW that they are allowed to pray in school or wherever they want, they know their God hears them wherever they are, but the politicians prey on the ignorant and emotionally vulnerable ones and make them think that big government wants to remove God from their lives. They dumb them down and emotionally fire them up with sensitive issues like religion and while the people are “defending” rights that need no defending, these predators are stripping them of rights or imposing laws that will impact them in more ways than they’ve been told.

The politicians in southern states have degraded the public education systems so bad, that they now rank at the bottom of the list. The teachers grow increasingly frustrated at the bizarre, unproven methods and requirements politicians are pushing through as laws. Not to mention the extreme cuts to one of the most important and crucial items a country invests in. Education.  The predator politicians in these states exploit the ignorance and religious devotion of their constituency to convince them that a non-existent, evil, Liberal entity wants to fill their kids’ heads with secular ideas. The educated Christians among their constituency KNOWS how important it is for our children to be educated about both secular and spiritual things. Thus the reason why they fight to keep religious teaching out of public schools. They do NOT want these predator politicians indoctrinating our kids with THEIR choice of religious teachings. They believe that should be done at home and at church. These predator politicians convince the emotionally vulnerable that Liberals are trying to take God out of schools, emotionally firing them up and distracting them,  while they pass educational legislation that is proving to be garbage. They accomplish this by making their constituency believe that they’re looking out for your children and others are not. Of course, they hold the Bible in one hand while they do it and for the vulnerable, that’s all they need. No verification necessary.  

The next time politicians raise an issue like chiseling the words “In God We Trust” above a small town courthouse or something similar, stop and take a moment to research what legislation your politicians are trying to pass. What are they distracting you from? The last time this happened, Tennessee politicians passed “Right to Work” laws.   (I’ll let the educated among you research the FACTS on THAT legislation!)

Educated Christians AND politicians KNOW that the attempt to chisel religious anything above a public building is un-Constitutional. They also know that this doesn’t affect their faith OR the power of God, but the less educated, emotionally driven, get hostile and are instantly distracted by the fight to “save their rights”.  They truly believe that this issue will somehow impact their ability to believe or worship their God OR restrict His power, when in reality, it hasn’t had an effect on them since the building was built some 70 years ago. The politicians took advantage of their ignorance and riled them up to distract them from the important issue and they took the bait. In the end, they lost on both sides.  They’ve now become slaves to “Right to Work” laws AND chiseling religious slogans on public buildings is in violation of the First Amendment of the Constitution which ANY elected official of a governing body, ESPECIALLY a county/city municipality COURT HOUSE, WOULD KNOW. They’ll waste thousands of dollars of hard earned, tax payer dollars fighting a lawsuit that they’re going to lose.  Ignorance and emotion.

Voting Against Their Own Interests to the Point of Peril

These same southern, conservative politicians have convinced their constituency that public assistance, like food stamps, health care, unemployment benefits, etc. are BAD and are creating dependency in our nation. They’ve conditioned them to believe that those that receive welfare are “Welfare Queens” and minority bums or immigrants come here to take our jobs and live free off of the system. Fox News drones on about how bleeding heart Liberals continue to give “handouts” to lazy people who refuse to work. They’ve convinced these folks that the reason they’re stuck in poverty and suffering is because of the welfare state the Liberals have created.

Try and explain to a Fox News educated Southerner whose been conditioned to believe the above that the reality of the situation is that white people in RED states receive the HIGHEST amount of federal welfare in this country.

Go ahead, try it.

Try and show them the data that proves that the southern states are the least educated, most obese, most drug addicted, have the highest rate of teen pregnancy and repeat teen pregnancy, highest meth addiction, most violent, most unhealthy, highest unemployment rates, worst health care, lowest education scores, etc. and they will fight you like a rabid dog and accuse you of lying. The predator politicians have conditioned them to actually VOTE AGAINST benefits that sustain them and their families!! And they CHEER them on while doing it!!

While much of the nation is enjoying access to affordable healthcare for the first time, the uneducated in the southern states are still parroting Fox News talking points that were debunked months ago while their friends and family go without necessary care. HUNDREDS of people are dying as a result and MILLIONS of dollars are being lost. This is fiscal responsibility and caring? BUT, a predator politician wrapped in a flag, carrying a Bible told them so and Fox News confirmed it. So they believe it.  Damn the facts and Damn the reality.

They have no clue that it is their own children that will go hungry and without decent healthcare because they supported the guy that wanted to cut those programs. In fact, they’re even cheering him on. In the end, when it’s time to pay the price, they’ll blame those of us who tried to help them.

Knowing how emotionally and mentally vulnerable the people are, these politicians and their media propaganda machines like Fox News, Brietbart, Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck fill their heads with misinformation and turn them against the very neighbors and friends who want to make them see how they’re being exploited and taken advantage of. But right now, the guy on TV has more power than those of us who sincerely care about what happens to them and until they realize that, we’ll sit back and watch helplessly and even be viewed as enemies by some.   

The politicians wearing their religion on their sleeves, saying all the right things about guns, glory, family and faith up on the podium have convinced them that THEY care about what happens and that the poverty and suffering and sacrifice they’re asking of their constituency is necessary for a brighter future. A future that never seems to come. Ever.

I no longer try and convince my conservative neighbors and friends that the “conservative” politicians are neither conservative NOR working in their favor. I no longer try and convince them by showing them actual data and facts that they are being lied to with fake data and made up facts. They simply don’t want to hear it. They’d rather hang on to the fear and hate who the guy on TV or in the podium or pulpit told them to hate.  The change is too scary.  It’s always been this way.

I pity the politicians, the fake preachers, and the pundits on the day these people finally do realize how they’ve been exploited and used.

OH, how I pity the politicians in office that day. The liars, the cheats, the corporate shills, and false prophets all of them. How I pity them when these folks FINALLY wake up and realize what’s been taken from them.

On that day, I believe the south WILL rise again.  And our country and our people will finally be a better place because of it. 

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