Fun:Georgia (U.S. state)
Atlanta is the spiritual home of sweet tea; Augusta is home to golfers. These two facts need not be reconciled but should instead be duly noted. Still, there must be something good about a place that could inspire Brook Benton's Rainy Night in Georgia. Georgia got soul.
LIBERTY is a Pretty Word
Long a one-party state under the thumb of white segregationist conservative Democrats, Georgia is today a one-party state under the thumb of white conservative Republicans. Georgians in Minority groups, and all others with a brain are represented by the Democratic Party. That's what progress looks like down in the Peachtree State. Progress is also manifested as the substitution of an intolerant religiosity for open racial hate as an appeal to mobilize white voters. To drive home the message, conservative Republicans are even now conspiring to compel all Georgians who drive cars — the entire population that is not incarcerated — with license plates that bear the inscription In God We Trust. The raw coercive might of the state will be used to force everyone to bear the mark of
Cain the religious majority.
Briefly, Georgia was home to a carpetbagger from Pennsylvania named Newt Gingrich, who represented the Sixth District and then moved to the Washington, D.C. area. As Aunt Pittypat said, "Yankees! In Georgia! How'd they ever get in?" A surprising number of politicians in Georgia bear the surname Purdue. Perhaps they are related. Several of the state's Republican U.S. Representatives, including Dr. Phil Gingrey and Dr. Paul Broun, have won recognition for their outstanding achievements in derp. Indeed that made both strong contenders in the Republican Party primary election for the 2014 U.S. Senate nomination.
A few years back, when the economy still sucked, Georgia decided, "Fuck it! Kick out the illegals!" and passed a law preventing people from hiring them. Works on paper, but it hurt the rural white poor more than anybody else. The effect was that even legal immigrants with work permits refused to work on Georgia farms. Literally hundreds of millions of dollars lost in economic output; almost brought their agriculture to a standstill. They pulled the bill after farmers raised holy hell about it. We'll see the same law enacted nationwide, if Trump makes good on his claims.
Well it's not all that bad, is it?
More recently, Georgia has become a changing state politically (don't worry though, Brian Kemp will make sure that doesn't happen), and the Atlanta suburbs have started to shift blue, when suburban whites realized that racism could backfire on them as well. And there's also Stacey Abrams, she's not very friendly with the governor there, which is a good thing (unless you're a racist, sexist, xenophobic boon). With the cities of Atlanta, Savannah, Athens, and Macon, Georgia has some nice places for visitors who'd rather see the civilized side of The South.
The book Deliverance, later made into the iconic film that launched Burt Reynolds' career, is set in north Georgia. Its specific location is fictional but based on on the Chattooga River, and apart from its iconic exhortation to SQUEAL LIKE A PIG the film's greatest impact was that it immediately turned the river into a whitewater rafting hotspot. North Georgians called its depiction of them appalling and dehumanizing (which is truthfully an extreme understatement), but the book's author, who was from Georgia and quite familiar with the area, maintained that his description was an accurate and faithful representation of the place. The works still serve to scare the living shit out of Appalachian Trail hikers as they walk the Georgian section.
Georgia's current governor, Brian Kemp, recently learned that COVID-19 is able to be spread asymptomatically, fucking months after the WHO and every sane medical professional in the country has been begging people to understand. We Georgians are royally fucked.
- Serraro, Alfonso, "Why Undocumented Workers Are Good for the Economy", TIME 6.14.12.
- At least if you believe their website
- Bryson, Bill (1998). A Walk in the Woods. HarperCollins.