I really should make this a series. There is quite sufficient material to run for at least as long as "Days of Our Lives", and the characters are more interesting!
So what follows is a small slice of the lives of everyday Oklahoma folk. Not an earth-shattering revelation. No links to evidentiary posts on Mother Jones, or Think Progress.
Simply a tale of what life is like in Jesusland
Mrs Twigg is a High School teacher. This has become more difficult over the years, as wages are cut and paperwork increased to the point where actual teaching can be difficult.
Nonetheless, she perseveres and the rewards are still there, even if you have to look more closely to find them. I sometimes wonder when the teacher's unions will start telling the States that they cannot keep demanding more and more, for less and less.
I fantasize occasionally about making a trip to Walmart, filling my basket with groceries then informing the checkout person that, this week, I am paying ten percent than last week's total bill and oh, by the way, there are more groceries here than last week too.
See how that works? At some point Walmart call over the guy with the gun and I would be asked to leave, or pepper-sprayed, or something.
No matter. Today our Hero came home on Plan, with a story.
Mrs T has a classroom assistant. This is to help her manage a class of up to ten students with special educational needs. The assistant in question is a very pleasant woman who is diligent and friendly. She is also pretty "churchy", the default here, and married to a Pastor.
So today being Thursday, she had tales from the crypt from the previous evening. Wednesday church is big here. Christianity, Oklahoma style, cannot span a full week. They have to attend twice in case the benefits start to wear off. So Thursday morning is "what happened in church the evening before" morning.
Well the conclusion this morning is that President Barack Obama arranged the Newtown Conspiracy to achieve his aim of gun control. They have a picture of the President standing with one of the dead children, so it must be all made up. The fact that the picture is of the sister of one of the victims is somehow lost in translation.
What makes this arrant nonsense even worse is that the story came from the teens in the congregation, who heard it from their teacher!!
Apparently, a teacher in a neighboring school district was instructing his class about conspiracy theories. Among the theories discussed was the Sandy Hook shooting. What was not made crystal clear to the students, or they had stopped listening by then, was that this theory was a crock of complete shit. By the time they got to church a few hours later it had become gospel, the conventional wisdom, the TRUTH!!
I tell you this only to demonstrate how this works here in the southern plains. Yes it's complete garbage. No, the students do not understand just how grossly disrespectful it is to the parents of those poor souls, and that is how it should be dealt with. To simply ask those students how they might feel if they suffered a tragedy and someone came along, in the midst of their grief, and told them that they made the whole thing up.
But that won't happen here. Here they will "tut-tut" and say that the students shouldn't listen to silliness ... because they would call it that ... or worse, say nothing, even agree that it is probably true.
I don't know how this works on the East Coast, New England, or other places, but here it comes out of the mouths of Fox News anchors or guests, at lunchtime, and by the evening news it is the TRUTH!! The TV is saying it, their friends are saying it ... even their teacher is saying it.
It's enough to make you spit!
10:09 AM PT: Sorry ... I should have been clearer. The Pastor's wife was relating the tale, not actually agreeing with it :)
But oh so many do agree ...