Monday, January 17, 2011

Happy Birthday to ya!

I need to apologise to you. Sometimes I am guilty of making generalisations in my blog about America! I have to tell you that North Carolina probably isn't typical or representative of the whole of America. The county where I live in North Carolina, I doubt is reflective of the rest of the state! I live in Wisteria Lane! ...Although I can only look on in admiration at the women here - it is far more Stepford wives than desperate housewives! Today, I feel rather ill informed on my blog - so it isn't so much generalisations as surmising, wild accusation and half truths I know very little about...
Today is Martin Luther King Jr Day. An official holiday to celebrate the birthday of Martin Luther King. After years of campaigning it was passed by the senate in 1983, was first observed by some states in 1986, it took another 14 years before all states gave in. The opposition to the  bill to introduce this as a public holiday was led by the senator of North Carolina who questioned whether King was important enough to receive such an honor. Senator John McCain of Arizona was pretty much against it too at the time. Didn't he just run for president?! I guess that is what you call Karma when Barak Obama won!
They don't care much for Obama here in North Carolina - it is very right wing. The Tea Party Movement is very popular here too, as is Sara Palin (both extremely right wing, against the Obama administration and they LOVE guns!) What worries me in the politics I see is the undercurrent of racism. You don't have to delve too much into the Tea Party Movement to see it, if not officially, then endorsed by its followers. I found it funny that Obama referred to the Tea Party members as Tea baggers - which is apparently a sexual act (a 'get your gums around my plums' type thing!).
They don't talk much about politics around here. I tried at a gathering on Saturday to discuss Sarah Palin's recent bizarre response to the Arizona Shooting of a Senator. She used it as an opportunity for self promotion in such a bad way. No one engaged. I should have told the joke:
What's the difference between Sarah Palin and a rottweiler? ...Lipstick!!!
Recently one person did open up and told Hubby that Obama should go back to the cotton fields where he belonged. We got our coats...
I watched a film the other night - The Betrayed with Tom Berenger and Debra Winger, about a FBI agent investigating the leader of a 'white supremacy group' in the American south in the 80's. It was sinister and disgusting. I couldn't help being reminded of Tea party gatherings - with their Trucks,  guns and silly slogans 'Guns save lives'. Mmmmmm!   I looked up Klu Klux Klan and was relieved to find the last incident recorded in North Carolina was in 1979 when 5 people trying to organise (predominately black) workers rights in Greensboro were killed by the KKK. Nothing recent that my cursory search identified. Not sure I want to look any harder. A friend I have here who is black told me the churches are still (unofficially) segregated. A problem for her and her husband as he is white.
The children are off school today to celebrate this National holiday. It is my responsibility to spend some time with them exploring why it is such a noble and important reason to pause, as a nation and reflect on recent history. After all 'those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it' (George Santayana)
As Stevie Wonder said to gain support when campaigning for this National holiday for Martin Luther King Jr! : Happy Birthday to ya!
The Lincoln Memorial, Washington- Martin Luther King delivered his 'I have a dream' speech here in 1963

No comments:

Post a Comment