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Howard Dean's Northern condescension is showing
Tallahassee ^ | 11/6/03 | Kathleen Parker

Posted on 11/06/2003 2:27:02 PM PST by Tumbleweed_Connection

As stereotypes go, few ignite the emotions as reliably as the Southern Pickup Truck With Confederate Flag. Just ask Dr. Howard Dean.

The Democrat front-runner opened ye unholy can of worms recently when he told an Iowa newspaper that he wanted "to be the candidate for guys with Confederate flags in their pickup trucks." Dean made the remark by way of explaining his opposition to some gun-control legislation and as part of his Southern strategy of inclusiveness.

As in: "We can't beat George Bush unless we appeal to a broad cross section of Democrats," he explained to the Des Moines Register.

And, "White folks in the South who drive pickups with Confederate flag decals on the back ought to be voting with us and not them because their kids don't have health insurance, and their kids need better schools, too," he said at a Democratic National Committee meeting in February.

In the wake of Dean's most recent remarks, a veritable maelstrom of Bubba-ness has ensued. You'd have thought Dean had invoked Satan by the reaction of the other Democratic candidates, who began jockeying for Most Virtuous and made literal the politics of bumper sticker slogans.

John Kerry accused Dean of being "craven," and pandering to the National Rifle Association.

"I'd rather be the candidate of the NAACP than the NRA, who understands that the Confederate flag belongs in museums."

Richard Gephardt issued a statement saying he'd rather "be the candidate for the guys with American flags in their pickup trucks."

Oh, yeah? Well, the Rev. Al Sharpton said he'd rather confront people who "wave the Confederate flag," not embrace them.

Sen. Joseph Lieberman's spokesman said Dean's remark was "irresponsible and reckless." John Edwards, a North Carolinian, said that "to assume that Southerners who drive trucks would embrace this symbol is offensive."

And George Bush, who drives a pickup truck, said: "Who?"

This amusing display of Bubba one-upmanship proves only one thing: When it comes to yahoo-ism, nobody can accuse the South of hogging the market. Southern boys who drive pickup trucks - with or without flag decals - are wondering what these guys are talking about, if they're wondering at all.

Living in rural South Carolina, I'm surrounded by pickup trucks and, I reckon, good ol' boys. Yeah, sure nuf, we get together every sundown at the corner Esso to shuck corn, swat flies, chaw tobacco and flirt with our cousins while swapping tall tales about Gen. Sherman's mysterious overnight with Miss Liza's great-grandmama and how her house miraculously survived the Yankee fires. Wee-dawgies.

But I'll be gall-durned if I can remember the last time I saw a Confederate flag - on a truck or off it, as we say in the sticks. Rednecks, short for Dean's "White folks in the South who drive pickups with Confederate flag decals," are not indigenous to the South, as any visitor to rural Vermont or Massachusetts knows.

We've still got a few Confederate reminders around, and you can find a flag if you hunt for one. But the South is so inundated with out-of-state license plates and accents, it seems weirdly out of tune to discuss the region's demographics in terms of pickup trucks and battle flags.

The whole episode smacks of classism if not racism: Northern Nobility embraces Southern Idiocracy. How long before one of them says: "Why some of my best friends are Southerners"?

I don't have much use for the Confederate flag and wrote three columns urging that the flag be removed from the South Carolina statehouse dome. It seemed inappropriate to fly such a divisive symbol over a public property.

But the Confederate flag is tricky among Southerners - a volatile issue, the nuances of which are often lost on Northerners and other visitors to the kudzu states. Not everyone with the battle flag in his home or on his truck is a dangerous racist, though some are. Plenty of sticker-free Trans-Am drivers in New York are, too, not that I have anything against Trans-Ams.

For many others - well-educated, prosperous, thoughtful Southerners, as opposed to the undereducated, uninsured, vacant-staring Walker Evans sharecroppers Dean apparently envisions - the Confederate flag is a symbol of Southern history, of battles fought and lost, of family members valiant and dead, of a person's right to express himself even if it offends others.

Gephardt, Dean, Lieberman and Kerry probably needn't waste too much time trying to court the Southern pickup crowd. Most I've seen - with American or Confederate flags on them - also have another sticker on their bumpers. It's red, white and blue and says: Bush.



TOPICS: Editorial; Front Page News; Politics/Elections; US: North Carolina; US: South Carolina
KEYWORDS: 2004; condescendingliberal; confederateflag; dean; dixie; hdean; howarddean; kathleenparker; yankee
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1 posted on 11/06/2003 2:27:03 PM PST by Tumbleweed_Connection
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To: Tumbleweed_Connection
H.K. Edgerton
2 posted on 11/06/2003 2:33:01 PM PST by snopercod (My Indian name is "Runs With Chainsaw".)
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To: snopercod
Nice!
3 posted on 11/06/2003 2:33:28 PM PST by mgist
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To: Tumbleweed_Connection
Dean's already lost the south,and he hasn't even made it past the primaries. Even Dukakis in his little tank was a better opponent.
4 posted on 11/06/2003 2:35:46 PM PST by Brett66
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To: mgist
Very funny!


5 posted on 11/06/2003 2:37:30 PM PST by mgist
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To: Tumbleweed_Connection
I've seen Confedarate flags on trucks in Walpole Mass,the Home of the Rebels !!!!!

Dean wouldn't know a working class stiff if he fell over one and believe me there are plenty good old boys in the Northeast,he doesn't have to go south to find them.

They just aren't members of his country club so he didn't even know they were there.
6 posted on 11/06/2003 2:37:30 PM PST by Mears
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To: Tumbleweed_Connection
It is obvious that Howard Dean is Pro NRA. If guns were illegal he would have no way of shooting himself in the foot.
7 posted on 11/06/2003 2:40:38 PM PST by vastrightwc
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To: vastrightwc
As bugs bunny would say: "What a Maroon, What an Imbecile" What a nin-cow-poop!
8 posted on 11/06/2003 2:42:29 PM PST by princess leah
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To: Tumbleweed_Connection


9 posted on 11/06/2003 2:54:54 PM PST by smith288 ((( () )))
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To: Tumbleweed_Connection
Living in rural South Carolina, I'm surrounded by pickup trucks and, I reckon, good ol' boys. Yeah, sure nuf, we get together every sundown at the corner Esso to shuck corn, swat flies, chaw tobacco and flirt with our cousins while swapping tall tales about Gen. Sherman's mysterious overnight with Miss Liza's great-grandmama and how her house miraculously survived the Yankee fires. Wee-dawgies.

The whole episode smacks of classism if not racism: Northern Nobility embraces Southern Idiocracy. How long before one of them says: "Why some of my best friends are Southerners"?

_________________________________________

Laughed out loud at these passages. Thanks for posting.
10 posted on 11/06/2003 3:00:29 PM PST by TX Bluebonnet
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To: Mears
What is it about the South that effete Northen intellectuals think they know everything about it?

Did you hear Zell Miller's riff on Dukakis Southern campaign on the Rush Limbaugh Replacement Show today? He said they had the stage stacked with so many hay-bales, it looked like the set of Hee Haw, and that he half expected Dukakis to stick a piece of straw between his teeth and shoud "Yee Ha!"

Dean isn't the first maroon South of the Mason/Dixon Line...
11 posted on 11/06/2003 3:02:34 PM PST by gridlock (Hillary! will announce she is running for President on November 19th.)
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To: All
This disease isn't just something that is prone to Liberals. I've known plenty of Conservatives who are equally offended by the Confederate Flag. I have no problem with people being offended by something, but I do if the only reason is because it conforms to political correctness.


If you want to get rid of the Confederate flag, then you better line up African Americans and hold their feet to the fire over the Pan African flags that fly on Southern black colleges and many in the North.

And if you don't think it's worth fighting to allow people to keep the Confederate flag, keep in mind they'll come after Old Glory soon enough. Either stand up for it or get outta of the way!

Besides, I grew up in Ohio where there are far more Confederate flags waving than I've seen here in the South.
12 posted on 11/06/2003 3:11:34 PM PST by MoJo2001 (God Bless Our Troops! Thank You For Our Freedom!!)
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To: gridlock
It's all over the Northeast. Boston Magazine has an article this month that insults the entire United States (with the exception of Boston,of course) with it's insults and condescension.

I was so appalled that I called them and cancelled my subscription. It was an embarassment and everyone should read it to see how elitist it is here in Greater Boston. There is even an ugly picture that is making fun of everyone in the U.S. that does not come up to Bostan Magazine's standards. Awful !!!!


13 posted on 11/06/2003 3:21:25 PM PST by Mears
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To: smith288
I love the html artistry!
14 posted on 11/06/2003 4:11:02 PM PST by .cnI redruM (Mouthing support for the workingman is one of the best ways to avoid actually being one.)
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To: Mears
Is there a link. This could be used against them.
15 posted on 11/06/2003 4:12:24 PM PST by .cnI redruM (Mouthing support for the workingman is one of the best ways to avoid actually being one.)
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To: Tumbleweed_Connection
I deeply regret that Lewis Grizzard is not around to comment on this all.
16 posted on 11/06/2003 4:15:58 PM PST by Joe 6-pack
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To: Mears
Is there a link to the Boston Mag story?
17 posted on 11/06/2003 4:27:45 PM PST by Endeavor
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To: Endeavor
http://www.bostonmagazine.com/
18 posted on 11/06/2003 4:49:09 PM PST by kcvl
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To: .cnI redruM
Us vs. American

By Jake Halpern

Former House Majority Leader Dick Armey claims that Boston has nothing in common with the rest of the nation. He's right.

ast fall -- not long after Boston was chosen as the site of the 2004 Democratic National Convention -- Dick Armey had breakfast with a roomful of reporters from the Christian Science Monitor. "If I were a Democrat," mused the then-House majority leader, "I would feel a heck of a lot more comfortable in Boston than, say, in America."

Of course, this is something of an old joke. For almost 15 years now, ever since Michael Dukakis went down in a blaze of liberal glory, Massachusetts has been an easy target for right-wingers and swaggering Texans who like to tell us about the "real America." Most Bostonians appear to dismiss such rhetoric as nonsense. And yet every time I get into my car and drive seven hours west to upstate New York, where my parents still live, I can't help but feel conspicuously out of place. I can't help but notice the Chevy El Camino parked next to me at the gas station with the rifle rack in back and the bumper sticker that reads, Ted Kenned's car has killed more people than my gun. At moments like this, I must confess, I secretly wonder whether Boston is farther adrift from the mainstream than we'd all like to admit. As much as we in Boston may hail our city as the cradle of the American Revolution -- as the home of the Boston Pops and good old Sam Adams -- it seems reasonable to wonder whether we're deluding ourselves a bi Isn't it quite possible, if not likely, that Bostonians are fundamentally different from Americans elsewhere?

Maybe Dick Armey is on to something . . .

19 posted on 11/06/2003 4:52:05 PM PST by kcvl
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To: Endeavor

20 posted on 11/06/2003 4:53:06 PM PST by kcvl
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