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I've heard the pleas to progressives from DLC apologists to accommodate Southern men. Unfortunately the only way they can be placated is by acquiescing in the voter suppression Rethugs and ALEC are determined to expand; by acquiescing in the rejection of Science their young-earth-creationist worldview straitjackets them in; by acquiescing in the misogyny that is at the root of their fetus fetish; by acquiescing in the disdain for the poor/unfortunate that is the product of a century of resistance to the emancipation proclamation. No there is no way to accommodate this brand of Southern man, we are right around the corner where these dinosaurs dont actually matter to building a progressive majority. FDR's coalition was eternally broken by the Civil Rights & Voting Rights Acts and pretending Humpty Dumpty can be put back together is inherently not progressive.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I disagree (8+ / 0-)

    Though reactionaries may greatly favor Romney for reasons that make no sense and go against their own interests for the most part, you should not smear all Southern men in this way. Yes there are Democrats. They vote and sometimes even win elections.

  •  WTF? Really? THis is your (7+ / 0-)

    election day contribution?

    Exceedingly trollistic behavior for such a newbie.

    Still enjoying my stimulus package.

    by Kevvboy on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 04:12:42 AM PST

    •  Yes, exactly. Committed progressives don't talk (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      about writing swathes of people off, ever. Progressivism is about a fundamental respect for all human beings. If you can't be bothered with that, then you've failed as a progressive. Sorry, dude.

  •  You might start... (10+ / 0-)

    ...with using a bit less condescension and outright bigotry.

    It often works wonders, when trying to speak to someone of a different background, I've learned.

    Yes, I often dress as a pirate. Your point?

    by theatre goon on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 04:15:03 AM PST

  •  LBJ was a Southern White Man (13+ / 0-)

    And he gave us Medicare, Medicaid, Voting Rights Act, Civil Rights Act, Public Televsion and a host of other things.

    Do not lump people together.

    The Spice must Flow!

    by Texdude50 on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 04:18:01 AM PST

  •  Of course I meant a majority of Southern men... (4+ / 0-)

    ...when saying Southern men. The apologists talk about cutting into the Rethug lead with Southern men by being more accommodating. All hail the minority of Southern male progressives, they never left the FDR coalition. But remember whites in MS, AL, GA outside of metro Atlanta all vote 90/10 GOP in Presidential elections; and it's not because of progressives calling them rednecks.

    •  Did you click on the link (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sewaneepat, theatre goon, MaikeH

      and read the whole article from Lynn Stuart Parramore ?

      My initial reaction is somewhat like yours, after reading the truncated part of the article which mainly criticizes the manner progressives have been talking to the "rednecks". I also think that Southerners who are so sure of their religious/moral superiority over the rest of us would never listen, so what's the point ?

      If you read to the end of the article, you will find that the author wants liberals to find common ground with Southerners and expand on it, not to find reasons for antagonism or to accommodate their wishes (like what you clamed and many Dem politicians have done). One example is the Southerner's dislike for fatcats, even more so than the average Americans so a message of lower inequality (or "we're all in this together" as Clinton and Obama recently campaigned upon or "A rising tide lifts all boats" as LBJ said) will go well with them.

      There's nothing wrong in finding some common ground, especially since it's the most important message high above other social/religious issue noises.

    •  Oh so NOW (0+ / 0-)

      you begin to draw distinctions.  Too late.  Fail, try again another time.

      Still enjoying my stimulus package.

      by Kevvboy on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 11:38:16 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  thank you PeterY. I agree, in fact it has been the (0+ / 0-)

    lack of true progressivism that has kept me from being an all-out democrat for years. My preferred ticket for this past term when the big banks and big brokers were fighting to bankrupt America would have been Kucinich/Biden. Why are the Dems not lined up behind Kucinich if they really believe what they say and are not just in it for the prestige and the perks?  

    Kucinich would have looked 'em in the eye and said "Justice Department, arrest these men." Obama's solutions like cash-for-clunkers only helped a few certain car makers and hurt the people who still want parts for their clunkers.
         And don't tell me that that was good for the environment when BP is still out there spewing, and the "southern man" who told me "we're all Democrats here, really-" said that "We're just voting against Obama because he killed coal." A few minutes later, in a quiet voice he did admit that, yeah, the water's not clean anymore, "but who needs mountaintops when you can have schools and malls and hospital complexes on the flat spots?" Yes, he actually looks at it that way, although I guess he might as well since his mountaintops are already gone...

    •  Look at Kucinich's congressional record (0+ / 0-)

      What did he get done while he was in Congress?

      That should answer the question why pragmatic Democrats have not lined up behind him.

      261.A wealthy man can afford anything except a conscience. -Ferengi Rules of Acquisition

      by MaikeH on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 05:01:54 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Organizing and (3+ / 0-)

    strong labor unions can address this.  Look at how Kansas and Oklahoma were bastions of progressive thought during the depression.  Woody Guthrie was from Oklahoma.  

    Justice For Will Will spent his brief, courageous life fighting for the rights we all take for granted. Please share his story to support the fight!

    by KibbutzAmiad on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 04:22:18 AM PST

  •  Pissed off by an apologist on the kos main page.. (5+ / 0-)

    ..asking for understanding of Southern men with confed flags on their pickup trucks.
    And that on Election day.

    •  Me too, particularly this part (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      What liberals and progressives don’t seem to understand is that you don’t counter a myth with a pile of facts and statistics. You have to counter it with a more powerful story. And that’s what Obama and the Democrats have repeatedly failed to do.
      I don't see why we have to kowtow to a bunch of people who don't respond to facts and statistics.

      If it isn't "all" southern white men, then why have the conversation to begin with.  Obviously according to this blogger, it's a significant number at least, worthy enough to consider having the progressives change their tune and invent narratives that will be pleasing to their ears.

    •  Agree about front page late night diary (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cama2008, cachola, OjaiValleyCali

      I took offense that we have to start listening these southern white men & people in NY & San Francisco are wrong in labeling them rednecks.  I'm all for finding common ground for the betterment if our country, but was put off by the tone of the diary that it is up to the northern liberal to be compassionate to the southern dyed in the wool Rep. Man & cajole him into enlightening himself.  Also tired of SF/NY bashing.  I lived in East Bay Danvilke, CA.  Wealthy & GOP.

    •  whose article you didn't apparently (7+ / 0-)

      read one word of. maybe you should.

      And if you still haven't pieced it together, maybe you should listen to a speech by a senate candidate from the 2004 Democratic Convention. His name? Barack Obama.

      Rick Perry - the greatest scientist since Galileo!

      by Bobs Telecaster on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 04:33:19 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  What is wrong with understanding??? (4+ / 0-)

      For Gods sake, do you really not know the difference between understanding and agreeing?

      He who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.

      by Sophie Amrain on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 04:35:42 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I think you misread the article. (5+ / 0-)

      She talks not of accommodating but starting a conversation around shared populist values. She speaks of showing respect for  people, if not their beliefs, so that one can find common ground. It is hard to have a conversation with anyone if you first start belittling them.

      You can't scare me, I'm sticking to the Union - Woody Guthrie

      by sewaneepat on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 04:46:51 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  The article didn't discuss the main problem (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      in communicating with southern white men- there is such a disconnect between reality and the world that they live in.  

      How can we meet on common ground if we can't even figure out where the ground is?  

      In their reality, Obama is a Kenyan socialist marxist nazi Muslim who's gonna take their guns away and kill their grannies with death panels.  Since even the author of the article admits that you cannot counter this with facts, what do you do?  Tell a story, she says.  Okay, fine.  Once upon a time, there was a black Muslim Kenyan socialist, but he was a nice black Muslim Kenyan socialist, and he only rarely killed grannies...

      I mean, if I say the sun in 93 million miles away, and you say no, it's ten miles away, and no amount of facts (or stories) will convince you... if I point out that Obama really isn't trying to take your guns away, but you believe with all of your heart that he is... then how can I sell you on the idea that what Obama is doing is good for the country, and good for you, personally?  

      Any ideas, folks?  I honestly wanna know.

      •  I know where my ground is. That's how I can (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sewaneepat, Hatrax

        speak to Southern men. Repugs have created a story for Southern white men, but you're not up to the task? That reflects on you, whether you like it or not.

        •  They've created a story that is false (0+ / 0-)

          and rooted in ignorance, disdain for facts and science and even empirical evidence.  Sure, I can make a story for them.  I really can.  The problem is the story I make will, of necessity, be a fantasy, because for them to understand it and relate to it, it will have to be rooted in concepts that they hold dear... which are not factual.  Without facts, how can we discuss policy?

          It's sort of like if we were to bring a Christian from the year 400 AD to our modern world, and try to explain to them where they are and what the culture is like.  I think they would have a very hard time accepting what they saw and heard and would fall back on their belief system.  So in order to reach them, I'd have to fall back on superstition and "here be dragons"... and you're saying that the fact that their culture and beliefs are radically different and rooted in concepts of superstition and nonsense, it's MY fault that I can't get them to understand?  

          •  I suspect you did not read the article either. (0+ / 0-)

            If you had, you would realize that the story would not be based on a fantasy, but on populism, conservation, and mutual benefits for everyone. That narrative actually fits in just fine with religious beliefs. But we have let the Republicans co-opt and distort the teachings of the Bible. And I say that as someone who is certainly not a fundamentalist, but as someone who sees the teachings of Jesus as a pretty good way to live my life (even without believing the mythology of Christianity.)

            You can't scare me, I'm sticking to the Union - Woody Guthrie

            by sewaneepat on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 06:27:14 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  You're both wrong, but you're wrong less. (0+ / 0-)

    People who are so profoundly wrong can be appealed to, but only with honesty: they have to be told that they need to change.  I don't think we need to characterize their views to date beyond saying they're wrong and not in their interests.  I don't tell someone that dress makes them look fat and in an electoral appeal I don't need to tell racists that their racism makes them vile and contemptible so long as there's some hope they can change.  I think they can, some of them at least, but there's no magic to it, just directness.

    You know, I sometimes think if I could see, I'd be kicking a lot of ass. -Stevie Wonder at the Glastonbury Festival, 2010

    by Rich in PA on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 04:28:53 AM PST

  •  While the body of your diary mentions (8+ / 0-)

    "this brand of Southern man," your title just refers to "Southern Men" as if they were some monolithic entity.

    I'm married to a Southern man, the mother of a Southern man, the sister-in-law of a Southern man, and cousin to various Southern men who are all Democrats. Do I have some members of my family who are Republicans - yes, but many more are Democrats.

    If you want to look at other Southern men who are not related to me, you will also find a great number of left of center people. Start with Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton, then with Morris Dees,  Steve Cohen, and Al Gore. Want entertainers? Steve Earle, Jimmy Buffett, Brad Paisley, Tim McGraw, Garth Brooks.

    Of course, there are also many African-American and Latino Southern men, but I assume you aren't including them in your denunciation.

    The fact is that there are all kinds of people all over this country and that includes the South. Painting a large group with one stereotypic brush is not productive.

    You can't scare me, I'm sticking to the Union - Woody Guthrie

    by sewaneepat on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 04:32:11 AM PST

  •  If you read (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sewaneepat, MaikeH

    Lynn Stuart Parramore's article on Alternet, in her view, the fears of Southerners regarding the current age have to do with the potential end of empire.  The end of the American Century, which for white Southerners, seems to equate with the imperialistic regime that was the Old South and the Confederacy, is hard for them to deal with.  They want to continue the empire; it's in their marrow.

    I think you have a point PeterY, that there has to be some fight back to the attempts at voter suppression and other dirty tactics that the right engages in.  But Parramore also points out that there is a strain of populism in the South that the Democrats could tap into.  This is not surprising for a region that has always had a tiny elite that controlled plantations and industry, and a large working class and underclass, both black and white, who were left with the crumbs.  If Priorities USA had run the "Stage" ad in the South during this campaign, I wonder what effect it would have had.  Probably not enough to turn those states blue, but it would get people to start thinking about Romney and the GOP in a different light.

    THIS JUST IN: Burger King announces a new sandwich: THE JOSH MANDEL PANTS ON FIRE WHOPPER! Two patties of BS covered in steak sauce, young cheese and no vegetables. No substance there, just bite!

    by Kurt from CMH on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 04:33:11 AM PST

  •  Utterly useless diary. (5+ / 0-)

    Today is election day in case you have not noticed. Trying to start regional wars is at best a distraction. At worst it is outright trollish behavior.

    And your total lack of understanding shows in the phrase 'accomodate Southern men'. The point some people are making (I do not know why you call them DLCers, that seems to me a dying breed) is that you need to understand how people think and feel if you want to have any chance in influencing their feeling and thinking. Understanding is asked for - you read 'accomodating'. In your urge to have an enemy ('southern men') you resemble the Republicans more than you presumably want.

    He who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.

    by Sophie Amrain on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 04:34:04 AM PST

  •  A brush far too broad (5+ / 0-)

    Ignorance and bigotry know no geographical boundaries.

    You are just as likely to find the type of man you describe in Boston, Chicago, and Columbus, as you are in Atlanta, Dallas, and Memphis.

    Growing up as I did in NY, I really had no interaction with guys from the South until the army and Vietnam.  I met great men from all over the country, just as I met bigots from all over the place.  I would not be alive to write this comment were it not for the incredible actions of a black grunt from North Carolina, a white grunt from Alabama who was the very definition of a redneck, a black medic from Tennessee, and a surgeon from Virginia.

    Like you, I have no time for people who engage in the kinds of actions that you describe, but I know full well that they cannot be pigeon-holed as coming from any particular region of the country.

    I am a warrior for peace. And not a gentle man... Steve Mason, 1940-2005

    by Wayward Wind on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 04:35:02 AM PST

  •  Says you.... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    theatre goon

    "Ich bin ein Dachs!"

    by PvtJarHead on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 04:37:23 AM PST

  •  The south is weird (0+ / 0-)

    On one hand there were things like the union organizing efforts in the coal mines (and other industries) and the brutal suppression of it ( see the Battle of Blair Mountain ), on the other hand the Jim Crow laws that oppressed a whole race of people and was supported by too many.

    Its been over forty years since I was stationed in Alabama, so my personal experience is somewhat outdated, but it was pretty fucked back then.

    It was a was strange op-ed to put on the front page.

    White-collar conservatives flashing down the street, pointing their plastic finger at me..

    by BOHICA on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 04:42:18 AM PST

    •  Things have changed down south (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BOHICA, sewaneepat

      I first went there (GA) in '66 and you could still see the freshly re-identified "seperate but equal" facilities. It was a scary place for a California boy then but its very different now. Don't judge the South by 40 years ago, a lot of progressives have really moved it along. also black people coming into power.
      Its STILL not perfect but its a lot better than it used to be.
      I just spent a week in SC at the first of last month, its not your father's south.

      Happy just to be alive

      by exlrrp on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 04:55:55 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not judging (0+ / 0-)

        Except for my time there.
        It just has a lot of skewed history, as does all of America.

        White-collar conservatives flashing down the street, pointing their plastic finger at me..

        by BOHICA on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 05:06:09 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Illegal for blacks to live in OR untill 1927 (4+ / 0-)

          It was against the law for AA's to live in OR untill 1927.
          Every state has a lot to answer for.

          Happy just to be alive

          by exlrrp on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 06:07:50 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Yep (0+ / 0-)

            Didn't change much until WWII and the Kaiser shipyards needed workers. Vanport was quite integrated for its time.

            It was constructed in 1943 to house the workers at the wartime Kaiser Shipyards in Portland and Vancouver, Washington. Vanport was home to 40,000 people, about 40 percent of them African-American, making it Oregon's second-largest city at the time, and the largest public housing project in the nation. After the war, Vanport lost more than half of its population, dropping to 18,500, as many war time workers left the area. But, there was also an influx of returning World War II veterans. In order to attract veterans and their families, the Housing Authority of Portland (HAP) opened Vanport College. The college enrolled 1,924 students its first year.

            White-collar conservatives flashing down the street, pointing their plastic finger at me..

            by BOHICA on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 06:16:14 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  When it comes to talking to southern conservatives (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    there is no one better than Sherman.
    Our party wins wars, our party is the party of working men.
    Let's give them a choice; Strength or dancing horses. Winners or Losers. Patriotism or Tax shelters. Wealth or Work. Christian charity or Corporate greed. Self-made or born into wealth.
    And if they choose wrong, make sure they know, that WE know where they stand.
    When we both know where they stand, then we can march right over them.

  •  Alabama here (0+ / 0-)

    As someone who has lived in Alabama for the last twenty years, there is no point in discussing the southern male without dealing with his church. The real problem down here comes out of the pulpit, in fact the preacher at the main mega church Whitesburg, told his church they would go to hell if they voted for Obama. Speaking as a progressive I just want to leave, I've been cussed at, tailgated, flipped off and had weird notes left on my car. My wife has had worse, and it's gotten worse over the last few years. The only way the south will change is demographically, not by stories, nothing really changes down here, and it's frankly getting worse. Or at least scarier, the anger and nastiness is growing. My wife sponsers the young dems at her school, she had on of those southern males tell his class he would like to punch her, others have made similar statements. I had to go up to the school and inform him that he could start with me. These aren't people you can talk with, they hate anyone not like them. The bright side is her dem club pulls in 70 plus kids in a deep red area, so there is hope that in 20 years things will change, but for now save your breath.

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