Victoria NeuroNotes

Into the Gray

Ack! Just When I Thought Mississippi Couldn’t Get Any Worse

95 Comments

As many of you know, I moved back to Mississippi in January. Essentially, I’m a transplant (during childhood) who moved away but had to move back for reasons I won’t go into in this post. I live on the beautiful Gulf Coast, which is finally getting back on its economic feet after being devastated by Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Oh, that reminded me of what the conservative, religious presidential candidate said about why his Christian god, Yahweh, sent Hurricane Katrina.

Photo credit: Vladislav Gurfinkel

➡ Because of gays.

For those of you who didn’t know, Hurricane Katrina killed close to 2,000 people. and caused approximately $108 billion dollars in property damage. And we wonder why gays experience the highest hate crimes of any minority group? There are more than 5,000 gay hate crimes each year in the U.S. Many of the reported crimes result in death.

Then there’s our pious governor, Phil Bryant, appalled by the recent Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage, stating he will do all that he can “to protect and defend the religious freedoms of Mississippi”. Andy Gipson, Republican State House Judiciary Chairman, said “one option is for Mississippi to get out of the marriage business altogether.” In other words, no longer issue marriage licenses to anyone in this state. You see, this isn’t about “family values” or what the Bible teaches, because the New Testament forbids divorce and remarriage, except in cases of adultery. Do you see sanctimonious mass hysteria among the religious right because divorce and remarriage are legal? Of course not. Conservatives Protestants have the highest divorce rate in the nation.

What’s this really all about? Forensic psychologist, Karen Franklin, who did extensive research on the roots of anti-gay hate crimes states:

“Heterosexism is not just a personal value system, it is a tool in the maintenance of gender dichotomy. In other words, through heterosexism, any male who refuses to accept the dominant culture’s assignment of appropriate masculine behavior is labeled early on as a “sissy” or “fag” and then subjected to bullying. Similarly, any woman who opposes male dominance and control can be labeled a lesbian and attacked.

The potential of being ostracized as homosexual, regardless of actual sexual attractions and behaviors, puts pressure on all people to conform to a narrow standard of appropriate gender behavior, thereby maintaining and reinforcing our society’s hierarchical gender structure.”

To add insult to injury, Bryant gets up in arms regarding the SCOTUS ruling, this past week, on the Affordable Care Act:

“Obamacare is not about helping those in need or improving health care delivery. It is about destabilizing our health care system, ceding more control to centralized government and replacing individual liberty with government dependence.”

That’s really ironic since he has no problem spending the federal government’s money, just not on the poor.

Bryant (who has comprehensive healthcare coverage paid by tax payers), believing the Affordable Care Act is a “socialist takeover” said no deal. He along with 22 other states, most of them Republican-controlled, blocked expansion. He states:

“Mississippi was right, as were numerous other states, not to willingly entrench Obamacare by establishing a state-based exchange, and I will continue to resist any efforts that attempt to shove Obamacare deeper into this state.  Republicans know there is a better way, and I call on Mississippi’s congressional delegation to immediately renew its efforts to repeal and replace this train wreck of a law.”

Train wreck? As Paul Hampton, of the South Mississippi Sun Herald writes:  “I bet that’s news to the millions of working men and women who gained health-care coverage under the law.”

“In religion and politics people’s beliefs and convictions are in almost every case gotten at second-hand, and without examination, from authorities who have not themselves examined the questions at issue but have taken them at second-hand from other non-examiners, whose opinions about them were not worth a brass farthing.”

― Mark Twain

Christ's teachings

I just came upon a short political video and website (link highlighted under excerpt) from a person who is from and lives in Mississippi.  You’ve got to watch the video, then read his post. The video is mind-boggling, and these politicians were serious! The guy posting the video breaks it down in case you miss some of the “subtle” points being made. I was stunned and effing embarrassed.  Excerpt:

“Brain drain hits home for me, from time to time. Mississippi can be a hard place to stomach, even if you’re like me, a straight white dude with a nice right jab, thick skin, and the ability to throw out a few jokes at even the worst of times.

The kind of people I like leave Mississippi. Maybe I’m a bad friend.

People who could make this place better pack up and head for more opportune climes, noble folk chased off by our worst impulses while we doff our hats, bowing to the scabrous old evils that have failed to provide any opportunity, save a chance to hate.”

➡ It’s My Mississippi Too, Asshole

 

For anyone who’s not aware, Mississippi ranks last, that’s right, dead last when it comes to the well being of its citizens.  The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development did a comprehensive, multivariate analysis taking into account a plethora of indicators of societal well-being. The results? Those states in America with the worst quality of life just so happen to be the most religious states. Mississippi is ranked the most religious (Christian).

Hey, we want all of America to be just like Mississippians. Miserable. In a nutshell, the Mississippi message is:

“We are godly, white, bigoted, bible-thumping, power-hungry, fear mongering, homophobic, dopamine addicted politicians, preachers and patriarchs who, with the guidance of our financial advisers lord and savior, seek to turn all of America into a 3rd World nation and theocracy.”

baptist church sign
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Author: NeuroNotes

Victoria predominately blogs about religion, and the brain's role in religious type experiences.

95 thoughts on “Ack! Just When I Thought Mississippi Couldn’t Get Any Worse

  1. They speak to god and know what is best for you, like it or not. Isn’t this the making of a tyrant?

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Here’s to life, liberty, and the pursuit of people we don’t like…

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I liked the part on the meme ‘except for that commie crap.

    It is interesting how the Bible is selectively obeyed. The early chapters of Acts have the Christians selling all they owned and living in a sort of commune. Jesus told the rich young ruler to sell all he had and give to the poor. These are challenging teachings, perhaps why they tend to be sidestepped.

    Instead many place greater focus on the OT promises of prosperity for those who follow God.

    One aspect that placed me at odds with other Christians when I was still a professing Christian was the attitude of Christians to the morality of non Christians. I argued, unsuccessfully in the main, that it was not up to Christians to impose their values on non Christians. The early Christians did not do this. They restricted their morality to their own lives, they did not expect the pagans to live by Christian values. The recent debates just make Christians look like hypocrites when they campaigned against gay marriage, yet seemed to tolerate sexual abuse in their midst.

    What I found was that some people, even fundamentalists, did admit I had point, but it did not generally cause them to change their approach.

    One of the greatest heroes of Christian history, George Whitefield actually campaigned to have slavery introduced to Georgia in the 18th century. His rationale was it would help run his orphanages at a cheaper cost. He searched the Bible and did not find anything in it to say slavery was wrong. Indeed he concluded the Bible seemed to endorse slavery.

    Liked by 3 people

    • “They restricted their morality to their own lives,”

      Imagine that.

      “What I found was that some people, even fundamentalists, did admit I had point, but it did not generally cause them to change their approach.”

      No surprise there. They speak to god and like it or not, know what’s best for you, me and the rest who see their inhumanity.

      Like

  4. I quoted her on Vance’s post and it seems appropriate here, too. Paula Poundstone called the last week a growth spurt for America. She said to beware the tantrum that comes behind it.

    As I’m sure you’ve seen, Texas has been flailing its arms and whining loudly too. The JotP that married me has said he will no longer preform marriage ceremonies at all. My hometown is not giving out the licenses because they don’t ‘have new forms’. And most of Texas is clinging to the ignorant words of a politician that says if you don’t like marriage equality for a religious reason, you don’t have to allow it.

    I don’t know how this is all going to play out, but I know their hate will be struck down eventually. I worry though, because this same SC that decided a corporation’s religious conviction matters more than an actual person’s convictions.

    Liked by 3 people

    • “I worry though, because this same SC that decided a corporation’s religious conviction matters more than an actual person’s convictions.”

      The SC comes across as schizophrenic. I’ve been keeping up with what’s been happening in Texas. Madalyn, I think we both understand why these politicians are doing their utmost to undermine quality education. As Noel pointed out, these are the workings of tyrants who use religion to seduce the masses.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I guess it doesn’t help when the good people leave at the first opportunity they have.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. New Texas Governor Greg Abbott is yelling (like an annoying cymbal) Texas officials to block marriage licenses, blatantly defying federal law and the Supreme Court decision. I wrote Mr. Abbott immediately that if he wants to defy federal law and the non-religious theocracy/state that our Founding Fathers NEVER wanted nor supported, then the more honorable action — or dishonorable depending on one’s POV — is simply to start the proceedings (ala Fort Sumpter?) for secession from the Union!

    Then I say to myself… How much (or little) has changed since 1860 thru 1865… WAIT!!! Make that 2015. 😦

    Liked by 2 people

  7. I promise you it’s not all doom and gloom. The second the money factor is off the table, the opportunists who have been exploiting a particular topic move on to something else. I’ve watched it happen in person, in 2005 in Spain and more recently in France. The Spanish equivalents to hate groups like NOM have basically disappeared. In France the “manif pour tous” now barely attracts a couple of hundred people per demonstration.
    In both countries there’s overwhelming support for gay unions.
    The problem is they move on to make new victims. The trend I see (in the US) is in targeting the transgendered community. Here in Europe the Christian right is aiming at things like in-vitro fertilization. They won’t get far as that’s by no means an exclusively lgbt issue.
    It may not seem like, but we are getting there.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. I found that video nauseating, from the vile music to the sickly sweet expressions and infantile words, it was truly obnoxious. And it’s a good thing the blog owner (Patrick?) highlighted some of the points. I was totally confused about the point about black people throwing money away. That was soooo crass. But, I suppose people genuinely believe that.

    Seriously, it must be tough living with that shit around you all the time. The Professor is (sadly) right. One wonders how much some parts of society have advanced? Change the clothes and it could be a scene from a few hundred years ago.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Man. Mississippi sucks. Great post, Victoria. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  10. “That’s really ironic since he has no problem spending the federal government’s money, just not on the poor.”

    Seems so obvious, but honestly I haven’t thought it about it in those terms before. Conservatives are against federal spending and handouts when it comes to the welfare of citizens, but totally FOR federal spending and handouts when it comes to corporate incentives and pork barrel projects that keep them in office.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Great post. Funny how the most religious regions often turn out to be the worst places to live if you’re an ordinary citizen.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. That Sign! Oh my gosh, that sign will give me bad dreams. There it is, plain as day, the pure evil authoritarian hierarchy displayed for all to see.

    Yet how many see what we see? How many ignoramuses drive by a sign like that and nod in agreement, instead of making a note to stock up on ammo and rice & beans?

    “We speak to god, and know what’s best for you, like it or not” sends chills up my spine.

    I can offer you sanctuary in Tn. for a while, until we are driven out of here too!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Come back to SC! We are supposed to have margaritas and plan to take over this state! 😂 that’s what the fundies think- at least we would let people do as they please lol 😉😄 Nikki Haley finally did something in the right direction banning the confederate flag at the capital- though still don’t like her but she realizes it’s about damn time to let go of the fascist agendas. More liberals here are pooling together every day to band against these backwards superstitious and hateful bigots that have made up this state too long! Mississippi is rough! I have drove through so many times when I lived in TX driving to see my rents and now going to see my in laws now that I live in SC. I hope things change for your sake soon or that you can get out of there soon!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I’m all for margaritas. 😀 South Carolina was rough, too. I saw some rather shocking stuff go on in the name of god and country. SC is a very violent state, more violent than MS. According to FBI crime statistics it ranks 5th. South Carolina’s murder rate for women killed by men is nearly double the national average. It is ranked the 2nd most dangerous state for women, down from being #1 the year before last.

      Mississippi isn’t listed in the top ten of the most violent states. Thankfully, I live directly on the Gulf Coast where it’s predominately Catholic and touristy. Go 10 miles north, and you enter Southern Baptist country. *shivers*

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes it’s worse than Dallas here- there’s a missing girl mentioned all over the news here all the time- or on billboards- it’s so sad! People are so apathetic to it too- like the Heather Elvis girl that went missing a couple years ago- people say “They should give up even searching for her body because she’s gator poo by now.” 😳 PS the person that said that is a freaky fundie but unfortunately that’s most of the population here. I have to ignore their ignorant commentary all the time and take their stupid shit all the time or I’ll be a victim myself 😣 they are ferverous about their beliefs (all of them- even whether a Ford is better than a Chevy)- just so stupid- no other word for it. 😔There’s been so much drama and murders here in past couple years they nicknamed Myrtle Beach “Murder Beach.” But I’m holding on to hope that better people shall take a hold of this city and turn it around 😕

        Liked by 1 person

    • SC Ranked Fifth Most Violent State In Country

      COLUMBIA, S.C. (WACH) – South Carolina is one of the most violent states in the country according to FBI crime statistics. The Palmetto State ranks fifth on the list with Myrtle Beach ranking as the most violent location in South Carolina.”

      http://www.wach.com/news/story.aspx?id=1078952#.VZLHA0aGNsU

      Btw, SC is also in the top 5 of the most religious states. Praise the lord and pass the ammo. Thank you very much.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. I’m fascinated by republicans saying they’re going to repeal obamacare…but they have put forth no alternative plan for health care whatsoever. This flabbergasts me. If you are going to oppose a solution with such a level of vehemence, have an alternative for us to consider. Obama care hasn’t helped my personal situation at all, however it HAS helped many people become insured for the first time in their lives. It’s a step in the right direction (though I wish obama would have taken things much further). The republicans would do nothing other than rip insurance and access to health care away from our citizens, and then what? Nothing. What a great fucking plan.

    Liked by 1 person

    • There are some people who are so poor they end up falling through the gaps primarily because states like Mississippi refused to do medicaid expansion. Most everybody else has had little to no difficulty getting Obama care if they were uninsured. Pre-existing conditions no longer prevent people from getting healthcare coverage under the ACA.

      Obama care is not perfect, but I’ve no doubt it will improve over time. It’s had a lot of opposition and hurdles to overcome.

      Liked by 1 person

      • There is a slight glitch where I live. We have the most expensive insurance in the entire country because Mayo is here…and that means obama care costs more in my county than it does anywhere else in the US. People STILL cannot afford it. Fucking Mayo Clinic…they are more of a detriment than a help when it comes to access to care…they draw in the rich international visitors for their expensive surgeries, and in the meantime the locals can’t afford to be seen by a doctor. Plus there’s horrific wait times…it took 16 months for me to see a rheumatologist.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Ah, but you seem to miss the point. Providing healthcare isn’t important. If you want healthcare, just pay for it. For some people who have the “right stuff” they can get jobs that provide healthcare as an employee benefit, for the rest of the population, who cares? The ugly right wants to make sure that nobody takes any money out of their pocket (taxes) to give to people who don’t have such things as food, shelter, healthcare access and the like. The important thing is that businesses make money, and that it doesn’t cost them anything. Ergo, there shouldn’t be any kind of system that helps people obtain healthcare besides private insurance. I had a hard time fully understanding that until I learned that American Christianity was based on Calvinism. Now it makes a lot more sense since Calvin seems to have taught that wealth was a sign of God’s favoritism and that the poor had offended god in some way and their poverty was god’s just punishment for their “crimes”. Seen like that, it all makes perfectly good sense, well, if you believe in the base premise that is.

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      • Its always wise to confirm what you’re saying before you say it.

        1. When I was a Christian, I was not calvinist
        2. Most Christians in the US are not calvinist, that’s a very very small percentage
        3. It is very wrong to assume that Christians don’t believe in helping the poor, they do help the poor. They give money to pay for rent, utilities, clothes, supplies for babies. Do you know how many Christian families are foster parents? Do you know the pain these families go through? To get a call in the middle of the night to pick up a baby that’s starving or born with a drug addiction!
        (there are some crappy Christians out there, as with any group of people. But there are also wonderful Christian people that donate their time and their money to help others that aren’t as fortunate)
        4. When conservatives look like they are against government programs, you need to read or listen to what they are saying without a liberal bias. We don’t mind the programs, we don’t want people poor. We want people to have full happy lives!! But living off of tax dollars their whole life is unacceptable!

        I know people (white and black) that live off of the government. One is a childhood friend of mine. Children from 3 different men. (not because she’s a “slut” just she would marry the wrong men) She never got a post high-school degree, technical or anything because she got pregnant immediately. And this continued. She’s 46, doesn’t work, and is on every government program.

        Another friend got pregnant right after high school. She also needed government assistance. She and her husband both went to college. Took her longer being a mom, BUT, she graduated!! Got a well paying job and no longer requires the government programs.

        One example is an abuse of the system the other is the right way to use the system when needed.

        I’m for personal responsibility. Stop blaming others for a tough life. Make your own path and make wise decisions. If you can’t afford to have children, don’t get pregnant! Don’t bring more children into poverty!

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      • Ah yes, I’m well familiar with “prosperity gospel” (though only recently learned about Calvinism). I guess if you’re healthy and wealthy the gospel of prosperity can only confirm you’re righteous and blessed by god…and if you’re not healthy and wealthy, you’re cursed. Subscribing to a philosophy like that would certainly make the world simple, and relieve the entire human race face from taking responsibility for anything. It makes fine sense! Blech.

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  15. I’m still very much conservative in my political opinions, so don’t hate me lol.

    I do believe that we need better options for Healthcare /insurance. Instead of Republicans and Democrats working together piece by piece. Finding a common ground, the Dems created this bill that was too damn big to read and understand and shoved it through. Pelosi said we have to pass it to know what’s in it!! Wtf??!!!!
    My 20 year old son can’t work more than part time because under this law the job will have to provide him insurance. He doesn’t need it, he’s under our policy. I know others that had great coverage and their policies went up. My parents are self employed, this didn’t help them a bit, they are still paying over 1200/month for insurance for 2 people.
    The two parties could have worked together and went through issue by issue and created something that helped everyone.
    I have friends that are ER nurses that tell me the abuse that Medicaid recipients do for care. Now you’re thinking ER… So must be an emergency…. No, they are there for pregnancy tests, flu shots, colds…. Those are not emergencies!!
    Also not all liberal states or cities are that great. Look at California. You mean to tell me not one politician saw their water crisis about to happen and try to think of a solution before the crisis hit? Chicago and their violence!! I live in Alabama… A lot of our lower income cities are run by Democrats and have been for decades. We have generations of people black and white that are content living off of tax dollars. The poor stay poor because they keep having children they can’t afford!!

    Both parties suck ass because they don’t want to work together. There’s plenty of blame to go around!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • “Pelosi said we have to pass it to know what’s in it!! Wtf??!!!!”

      Sounds very much like what Bush said when passing the Patriot Act.

      Hi Sally, welcome. You raised some good points. We all need to work together, I completely agree. Both parties have not served its citizens well. I do believe, though, that there’s been far more opposition to work together, non-competitively, from conservative Republicans than Democrats. I’m registered as Independent. I’ve never voted a straight ticket — but I haven’t voted for a republican during the last two elections because dominionist religious radicals with the brain power of a gnat have hijacked Congress.

      I lived for 10 years in California. My dad lives there, has for 40 years, as well as other family members. They are all republican, and quite conservative. California is a mess. it took a bipartisan effort to bankrupt the state. California was a Republican stronghold in presidential elections from 1952 until 1992. During this period, the Republicans won California in every election except the election of 1964. Since 1975 to 2011, it’s been dominated by Republican governors, with exception of four years between 1999 and 2003.

      I also find it interesting that a party would get blamed for a 4 year drought with record breaking high temperatures, lol. The poor stay poor because of inequality, and it sure would be nice if conservatives would get off their holy high horse and stop trying to prevent women from getting affordable access to birth control, including the most effective BC. But, alas, religious corporations have more rights than *cough* people.

      I don’t hate you. 😀 I just don’t take kindly to conservatives trying to stake a claim to my vajayjay.

      Liked by 2 people

      • There’s an old saying my granddaddy used to say to me. It goes like this: “Republicans are a-holes. Christian conservative Republicans are the hair on a-holes.” After he’d say this, he’d burp, put out the cat, drink a liter of warm milk, then pass out in front of the TV watching Three Stooges shorts. $Amen$

        Liked by 1 person

      • I do disagree that Republicans are more unwilling to work with Democrats than vice versa. Both sides dig their heels into the ground and do their best to make the other side look like shit.
        California, for the most part is a liberal strong hold. And i didn’t blame Democrats for the drought, I blamed an environmentally friendly state for not having the foresight to see their water levels were depleting. It’s not that important as long as the Hollywood elite can keep their pools filled and lawns green!!
        Affordable birth control!! I’m not sure which one you use, but mine is $9.00/month. Very affordable, in fact that is less than it costs for me to get my nails done and my cell phone service. Surely an adult woman can afford condoms or birth control pills if she can afford cell phones, cable, nails, hair cut /color, alcohol, one out to eat dinner/month .
        I do not understand what you mean by the most effective birth control, they all have a fail rate. I’m also confused by conservatives wanting to stake claim on your vagina, are they forcing us to have sex and breed them children? I’ve not heard of that happening.

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        • Sally, we will have to agree to disagree regarding the unwillingness of Republicans to work with our president. I’m just going to address one subject at a time because I could easily overwhelm you with sources. To start with, this is a fair article clearly laying out the problems with the GOP. I have never seen such a clusterfuck of radical politicians as I have in the last 15 years, but especially the last 10 years.

          In 2005, U.S. Representative Christopher Shays, a Republican from CT stated in the New York Times — “This Republican Party of Lincoln has become a party of theocracy.”

          As the article states (link below), the GOP has become an insurgent outlier in American politics. It is ideologically extreme; scornful of compromise; unmoved by conventional understanding of facts, evidence and science; and dismissive of the legitimacy of its political opposition.

          Thanks to the GOP, compromise has gone out the window in Washington. In the first two years of the Obama administration, nearly every presidential initiative met with vehement, rancorous and unanimous Republican opposition in the House and the Senate, followed by efforts to delegitimize the results and repeal the policies. The filibuster, once relegated to a handful of major national issues in a given Congress, became a routine weapon of obstruction, applied even to widely supported bills or presidential nominations. And Republicans in the Senate have abused the confirmation process to block any and every nominee to posts such as the head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, solely to keep laws that were legitimately enacted from being implemented.

          In early 2009, several of the eight Republican co-sponsors of a bipartisan health-care reform plan dropped their support; by early 2010, the others had turned on their own proposal so that there would be zero GOP backing for any bill that came within a mile of Obama’s reform initiative.

          Seven Republican co-sponsors of a Senate resolution to create a debt-reduction panel voted in January 2010 against their own resolution, solely to keep it from getting to the 60-vote threshold Republicans demanded and thus denying the president a seeming victory.

          Former (Republican) senator Chuck Hagel of Nebraska called his party “irresponsible” in an interview with the Financial Times in August (2012), at the height of the debt-ceiling battle.

          He writes: “I think the Republican Party is captive to political movements that are very ideological, that are very narrow,” he said.“I’ve never seen so much intolerance as I see today in American politics.”

          Mike Lofgren, a veteran Republican congressional staffer, wrote an anguished diatribe last year about why he was ending his career on the Hill after nearly three decades.

          He writes: “The Republican Party is becoming less and less like a traditional political party in a representative democracy and becoming more like an apocalyptic cult, or one of the intensely ideological authoritarian parties of 20th century Europe”

          http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/lets-just-say-it-the-republicans-are-the-problem/2012/04/27/gIQAxCVUlT_story.html

          Sally, we both live in the region of the country that is religiously conservative. I live in the reddest state. People in the South tend to vote against their own best interest, and if you will look over the stats that I posted in the OP, you will notice that Mississippi, Arkansas and Alabama ranked as the worst states to live in. Louisiana is the murder capital of the U.S. Of the 13 worst states to live in, 11 of them were in the South. Nine different measures of well-being were taken into account: health, safety, housing, access to broadband, civic engagement, education, jobs, environment, and income.

          The South has the highest obesity rate, highest rate of HIV/AIDs, highest STDs, highest poverty rate, highest high school dropout rate, highest teen pregnancy rate, highest infant mortality rate, lowest life expectancy rate, highest diabetes rate. Highest cancer rate. It has the highest rate of depression, and the CDC suggests that its because of the prevalence of chronic health issues. The southern states ranked as having the worst health care. As I noted previously, the Red states have the highest divorce rate.

          The South accounted for 40.9% of all reported violent crimes even though it makes up roughly a quarter of the country, according to the final Uniform Crime Report from the FBI. To add insult to injury, the South has the highest racism.

          The South is beautiful and there are many beautiful people here, but it’s the most dysfunctional region of the country, and the politicians here don’t seem to want to do a damn thing about it. There also appears to be much apathy among the citizens.

          ———————————————-

          “For men tied fast to the absolute, bled of their differences, drained of their dreams by authoritarian leeches until nothing but pulp is left, become a massive, sick Thing whose sheer weight is used ruthlessly by ambitious men. Here is the real enemy of the people our own selves dehumanized into ”the masses.” And where is the David who can slay this giant.” ~Lillian Smith

          Liked by 1 person

    • Ah, I see that you understand basic Calvinism completely! Good job! It’s very important to keep emphasizing that the people who wind up using any and all forms of government assistance are lazy, unwilling to work or try to support themselves, criminal in some way (drug or alcohol users) etc. It is important that you understand all of this. Be very very careful not to look under the surface of all of this, you might see something else.

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  16. Your next post can be on all the positive things about living there. I’ll start you off – it’s warm, you’ve all probably got that cute southern twang and you’ll have all those noisy night-time insects that make the world a cool place to be, right? See, it’s not all bad.

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  17. Great post Victoria! And I read that other blog with that horror of an election video. What I really wish is that they would just call themselves the Southern States of America or something. I hate the fact that they wear their American flags everywhere, but there is nothing more inherently American about them than anybody else. They are still complaining about the same sort of shit they did that started the civil war, in which they were happy to consider themselves particularly un-American. The way conservative and liberal is polarized here by the media makes liberals seem anti-family, anti-God, unpatriotic and lazy. Because they market themselves as the exact opposite. It’s such a façade. I can only hope that the world leaves them so far behind that they are literally seen as some sort of primitive tribe.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Swarn. The most common denominator I see among conservatives here is fear. Fear of change and fear of anyone who’s different from them. As you are aware, several neurological studies, using fMRI scans have shown that conservatives tend to have increased gray matter volume in the area of the brain (amygdala) associated with fear, disgust and aggression. I do think this plays a huge role in their apprehension to move forward, and cunning politicians know how to work it with fear mongering.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Great quote by Stewart. BTW, how’s the gulf coast recovering from the BP oil spill?

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Well, Victoria – I believe it’s high time you high-tailed it outta there! No wonder you get angry; the RepubliCHRISTians keep pissing you off! I am so hoping for change for all of you in 2016…

    I am visiting family in Australia now and walk most days with a friend I’ve met here. I have been telling her stories about what it’s like to live in the Bible Belt in the U.S. (We use the term ‘the States’, they say, ‘America’) and she’ll say, “oh! That can’t be right!” I have the impression that religion is very ‘discreet’ here, much the same as where I come from, on the east coast of Canada.

    Oh, and she’s a devout Catholic who has a gay son. She – like me – finds it completely incredulous that religious people will say such vile things about same-sex unions. Quite flabbergasting, really.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey Carmen, I’m so glad you popped in. I can get angry because I see little progress, and unnecessary suffering. People here smile. They will welcome you and give you a big hug. They will say “bless your heart”, and you never really know what they mean, lol. There are people here who keep religion to themselves, but unfortunately that is not the norm. People here think a lot about the end times, and act as though they can’t wait to see the world come to an end. When I was a believer, I didn’t realize how obsessed they were with all the apocalyptic stuff. It’s so oppressive, sometimes I feel like I can’t catch my breath.

      Like I shared with Swarn, people who tend to be conservative have heightened electrical activity in the area associated with fear. If you are different you pose a threat. It’s very tribal here. If I lived in Southern Baptist country, just a few miles north of me, I have no doubt I’d be seriously depressed. Neil Carter would be too had he not found a great online community, and now is getting to meet some of them this summer during his speaking engagements. I’m not sure if Neil will end up staying in Mississippi, though he says he probably will. I have my doubts. I see him leaving once his daughters are grown.

      “She – like me – finds it completely incredulous that religious people will say such vile things about same-sex unions. Quite flabbergasting, really.”

      I suspect that most of the world is flabbergasted. It’s a travesty.

      Like

  20. I still stick to my position that both parties need to work together and both are equally at fault.

    Rep. Jim Moran (D-Va.) likened the relationship between presidents and their Capitol Hill allies to that between quarterbacks and the offensive linemen charged with protecting them. Some quarterbacks, he said, simply manage that alliance better than others.

    “Certainly, Bill Clinton saw us as his offensive line, and so he attended to the nurturing of his offensive line,” Moran said. “And I don’t think this president, this quarterback, invests all that much time and effort into the care and feeding of his offensive line.”

    SEN. JOE MANCHIN (D-WV): “I would say that mine is probably like the majority of Senators, especially Democrats, up there. Everybody has a different style, again, as we’ve said. And that’s just not in the president’s nature, to pal around and, you know, the gregarious type of personality that is like a Bill Clinton. Two different people.”

    I could go on about the relationship that Obama has with his own party, it is not the best. What about his relationship with the media?

    During his first days in the White House, President Barack Obama promised to usher in an era of openness in government, stating that a new commitment to transparency would only serve to “strengthen our democracy.” But now, some seven years later, a new study conducted by the Columbia Journalism Review suggests that relations between the White House and the media have never been so closed off. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/03/04/obama-press-worst-ever-administrations-relationship_n_6794920.html

    Living in the south does have its frustrations at times. I do feel that sports are put above education. Our obesity rate is embarrassing. But these are not religious nor political problems. These are mindsets where people have their priorities messed up. I know some cities are wanting to tax sugary drinks, is that really going to fix obesity? I am a thin woman because I do exercise and watch what I eat. Why should I pay a higher tax if I want to drink a coke with my meal?

    Now this took some time to look up city by city of the things you mentioned. Our high school graduation rate is increasing. Washington DC has the lowest graduation rate (run by Democrats) while my state (Alabama jumped up 5 points a couple of years ago) So our country on a whole is doing a better job at this.

    Infant Mortality Rate, out of the top 10 cities 3 were in the south. I will list them and then list their mayor. Atlanta Ga (D), Memphis TN (D), Raleigh NC (I, but the D party supported her)

    HIV out of the top 10-6 were in the south. Miami FL (R), Baton Rouge LA (D), Jackson MS (D), Memphis T (D), Atlanta GA (D), Jacksonville FL (R)

    Are you noticing a pattern?

    Murder Rate out of the top 10-1 was in the south. New Orleans LA (D) was ranked #9

    STD: out of the top 10-5 were southern states. Austin TX (D), Miami FL (R), Dallas TX (D), Atlanta GA (D), San Antonio TX (D)

    Most of these cities are Democrat run.

    I will be honest, I do not care for most politicians. I feel they get into office and greed takes over. We have men and women that have “served” in an elected office most of their lives…they get this entitlement mentality. What we need are every day people to serve 2 terms max. After that, go back to their jobs.

    Even though you and I may disagree on a lot of issues, I bet if we sat down we could work things out. Neither side will be 100% happy, but as a country, I feel we would be better off. Also, we can go a lot further if we spoke to each other with respect and a tender heart. Both sides are equally as guilty with name calling and the belittling of others’ opinion.

    I recently left my Christian faith and over the past few years I examined my political opinions. I wanted to make sure that none were biblically based. I feel/felt it is/was wrong to make laws based on religion when a good portion of our country do not believe in God. I changed a lot of my opinions, and lean more libertarian now. I am more fiscally conservative and socially liberal (minus abortion)

    Anyway was fun! 🙂

    Like

    • Hi Sally,

      First let me say that I appreciate you taking the time to look further into the stats. I learned the hard way to never just take someone at their word. 😉 Of the ones you mentioned, I’ll break it down for you with geographical maps — stats coming from the CDC and FBI:

      Murder:


      http://www.businessinsider.com/why-is-the-murder-rate-high-in-louisiana-2013-9

      STDs


      http://www.livescience.com/48100-sexually-transmitted-infections-50-states-map.html

      HIV and AIDS

      http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/statistics/basics/geographicdistribution.html

      Infant Mortality

      http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/databriefs/db120.htm

      I do think politics and religion play a huge role in the social ills we see in society. Education is key, and both religion and politics impact education. Just look at Texas and Louisiana. Moses is in public school books as an honorary Founding Father. Creationism being taught in public school science classes in Louisiana. The GOP in Texas tried to remove critical thinking in schools. Quote:

      “The party opposes the teaching of “higher order thinking skills” because it believes the purpose is to challenge a student’s “fixed beliefs” and undermine “parental authority.”

      http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/answer-sheet/post/texas-gop-rejects-critical-thinking-skills-really/2012/07/08/gJQAHNpFXW_blog.html

      I agree with you about the “sin” tax on soda’s or other low to no nutrient foods. It’s a joke, especially when these corporations pay millions to neuromarketing firms to find what parts of the brain get the most surges of dopamine with their product, which can lead to addictions.

      I am with you about politicians. Most of them are pathological liars and pander to the lobbyist. The lot we have in Congress today is dreadful. Clinton had his problems, and I didn’t agree with many of the decisions he made, usually to appease the Republicans. Republicans are the most conservative in over 100 years. Extremism only “benefits” a small portion of citizens. This is a secular country, and I think many serving in both houses ignore this.

      BTW, Sally, I used to live in Alabama. My daughter was born there. My late husband was from there. We met in Washington, DC while working there. I have no doubt that I would enjoy your company. Maybe someday we can meet. Feel free to email any time. I would love that. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • A lot of these issues are poverty related. A single mom has a higher chance of being under the poverty level. I don’t mean educated working single moms, but teenage single moms. It’s so hard for them to get ahead. This isn’t a religious issue, this is a mentality that a particular party is going to support them.
        I don’t mind government assistance, but it should never be a way of life.

        I feel a huge issue is fear. The left are afraid that the right want to infiltrate the schools with Jesus and the right ate afraid the left will infiltrate LGBT curriculums. I think both sides need to leave social issues out of our schools and teach the basic subjects. We could bring in technical skills classes for those that may never go to college. Imagine graduating high school with a trade!!
        At times I hate the south, I don’t really fit in. But for the most part, it’s a beautiful state, I feel safe being alone, most people are really nice (some are scary lol) but it’s not the backwards fucktard state that many think it is. Lol.. And yes, I do love that song, sweet home Alabama!!

        I’m glad we met… You will be seeing a lot of me. I feel I’ve met others that understand my De-conversion, and I really really need the support.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Sally, I think you are going to be pleasantly surprised at the wonderful community here. You’re going to learn a lot, and probably make lifelong friends. I certainly have. I’ve also met some really kind and caring believers here, too, who respect boundaries and afford their children autonomy. They are generally the ones who rarely crack open a bible. 😉

          Liked by 1 person

    • For some reason the STD images didn’t embed, but you can click on the boxes or just go to the link.

      Like

  21. Thinking of the abyss of radical classical christian ideas, that mixed with conservatism has caused the perverted social order that is Mississippi politics. I do understand, why you sometimes have to stick your tongue out and say ack in disgust..

    Living in the thick of it one might feel that committing to a just cause, in a place where there seemingly is little to no hope of success is absurd. Then again, not committing to a just cause is equally absurd. Only one choice offers the possibility for dignity, and dignity matters. 🙂

    It is ever refreshing to see you sit from within one of these abysses and commit to something that matters.

    Also, get your ass on skype!

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Don’t feel alone Victoria. We have the same people here as well and sometimes it’s worse, as we live in a small town where most have small minds. It seems it doesn’t matter where we go, those kind of assholes will always be around. 😀 ♥

    Like

    • Yeah, I’ve read some not so nice things that have gone on in SA and particularly among white people. I’ve got to tell you, I was absolutely appalled at that video, and with few protesting about it in Mississippi, it tells me how despicable the characters of white Mississippians are. No wonder Mississippi is so fucked up — look at the ones in charge. White men with a cross up their ass.

      Liked by 1 person

  23. My family on my moms side is from the Vicksburg area. Been a few times in visits. Worst in general well being isn’t hard to believe. Night and day you and I. Panamá was just ranked number 1 in the world in that catagory. Just thought I’d rub that in a little!

    Liked by 1 person

  24. It was difficult for me to “like” this post as I think about you sweating away in oppressive Mississippi. I don’t think we have it much better here in KS. You did know that my hometown is the same zip code as Fred Phelps and Co, right? Not proud of that at all.
    I guess we do what we can. Spread the love in our own corner of the world, refuse to be oppressed by it and emanate compassion – especially to the folks who need it – or even the ones who don’t think they do.
    Love you sis! xo

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hello my sister, my friend. I could be doing other things with my spare time, but this problem isn’t going to go away with apathy. The Civil Rights movement didn’t come about by turning the other cheek.

      Actually, I didn’t know your hometown zip code is the same as the late Fred Phelps. I’m guessing the church is still there. 😦 Another dear friend of mine, who is originally from Canada, attended a university in Oklahoma. If I recall, he was earning his masters. He said he felt oppressed while living there.

      Love you, too. ❤ So great to see you. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • The ‘church’ is still here, but they have been noticeably quieter since he died. It’s been the scourge of our town for a long time.
        Have you read the memoir by Sally Mann – “Hold Still”? It’s a photographic capture and sharing of her childhood in the South. She’s a photographer first, but her words are poetry – and she addresses the ugliest subjects (i.e. slavery) in eloquent and striking ways. She’s not for everyone, but she struck a chord with me 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  25. Pingback: Ack! Just When I Thought Mississippi Couldn’t Get Any Worse | Scotties Toy Box

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