Alabama dumb-assiness time. This state is in what legislators refer to as pro-ration. Meaning there is not enough money to budget for everything. This is mostly because for many years Alabama has lured corporations in with offers of charging them no taxes. And by-god they's sticking to it. Not enough that there are 4 million people here that will work for $8/HR. We are apparently the new China (only less people and drunker).
So, what do you do when there's not enough money? Cut something. Entitlements. Hmm. Let's see. Oh, education! Hell yeah, we've got too many teachers here, anyway (and you should see the list of shit you have to buy and send with an elementary school student already). What else? MEDICAID. They are cutting funding for that. The real problem is that every dollar Alabama cuts from its medicaid budget loses TWO matching dollars from the Federal Government. 3 for 1! What a bargain.
The state is defunding ALL mental health facilities! Think on that for a second. All mental health facilities in ALABAMA are being defunded and CLOSED. The idea is to send all those patients to 'group homes' and 'halfway houses'. That's some scary shit, right there.
This will also cause hospice service to be unavailable for many people.
And worst of all "It is very unfortunate that many dialysis patients will not be able to receive treatment." WTF? They're just supposed to go home and die, I guess. Bless their hearts.
So with all of this going on, you know what was the big news story today on local TV?
The state legislature is debating a bill that would allow the ten commandments to be displayed in schools and state buildings. Total waste of time and money (in a state that has none) that will be overturned by the Federal government. FUCK FUCK FUCK!
At least everyone will know which candidates are the most religious at election time, which is the whole point, I guess.
I am so disgusted and embarrassed.
I am now serious about getting out of here. At least to Georgia where they are a little more progressive and have FREE college for my kids (thanks to the lottery, which is the devil.)
I honestly don't think there is anything about these bible belt states that justifies living there. It always sounds like Afghanistan except Wal-mart and Christianity replace the opium trade and Islam. It's all racism, corporate hegemony, religious horseshit, homophobia, no social safety net, pigshit in the drinking water and the Trayvon Martin case causing tragedy, ridicule and embarrassment over America's phallic obsession with firearms.
I live in Canada's most right-wing, religious province (Alberta) and we are goddamn Scandinavia compared to the southern states. Is the freedom to carry a gun in your crotch for self-defense worth living in an amalgam of Ayn Rand's callousness and Charlton Heston's demagoguery? I'm just, Americans, there's NOTHING you can do to convince me there are any advantages to living there. Progressive, sane people are in a minority that will NEVER be in power.
Damn David, what do you REALLY think? haha. I guess most people live here by accident, because we were born here. That's the case with most people everywhere, I think. That's one reason. I personally traveled the US while in the Navy and wound up back here because my dad had cancer. Now we stay to be close to family. I know I rail on Alabama a lot, but it isn't all bad. It is difficult to perceive oneself as being in such a minority(progressive atheist), but it isn't a daily struggle for survival like Afghanistan. If it was, I'd be somewhere else! I mostly get upset with state government trying to legislate from the bible. Regular people here are the most polite, well mannered, and generally well meaning you could meet. Even though most of them are misguided by religion and politics.
BTW, I have always thought I would like to live in Canada. I might make it one day.
This reminds me of an interesting article about southern stereotypes recently on cnn.
I read that article too. I thought it actually didn't do a lot to debunk stereotypes. Too bad, with CNN being headquartered in Atlanta. For example they could have discussed that Atlanta as America's Black Gay Mecca. 30,000 at a Black gay festival - not the stereotype that most people have of the South. N. Carolina also seems to be entering the 21st century, 2 steps forward, 1 step back. But I don't know about Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee. More rural probably.
25 years ago I was so fed up with the shameful backwardness and bigotry in Indiana that I jumped at the chance for a job in Oregon, even though I had never been to the Pacific Northwest and had never been within 1500 miles of the town I moved to. Even though Indiana is a Northern state, it is Southern in character, even having had lynchings and significant KKK involvement. I was not strong or brave enough to continue living there. When I left, I used to tell people that, even though I was a pacifist, it would be a good place for a nuclear test site.
I've been looking up Alabama to see if there is some redemptive value to that state. I hate to stereotype, I don't believe in painting with a broad brush when life is usually much more nuanced. After all, even though we (I) tend to view Alabama as redneck (which is white), 26% of residents there are African American. There used to be a lot more, but with racism, peonage, Jim Crow, mass migration out of the state occurred for a lot better reasons than I had for leaving Indiana.
Even so, Im someone who tries to expand my horizons. I have a desire to tour the south and learn first hand what life is like on the other side of the Kudzu curtain. Find some heart and soul, discover new things about myself and others. I looked up things to see - really, Hitler's tea service? Monument to lady whacking meteorite? statue of giant peach? Oh, the Cross Garden / Hell's Warning Label I don't know. Maybe I'll cross it off my list.
Sad to say, there is no part of the country that is free of bigotry, tyranny, oppression and you already know that. But if I were to choose a place to visit, I would stay in the northwest, maybe the orchard areas, not the cities, but the countryside.
"There's no place like home."
Joan you are right. Ditto re: orchards. That's why I have my own little orchard.... but damn that raccoon that killed my best hen last week!
I love raccoons but love hens more. We found feathers of a little banty at my daughter's farm and I cried. I was ready to kill. Nature isn't compassionate!
People are afraid! Who makes them afraid? Well, let's start with horror stories told in churches and taught in Sunday schools. Then along come the sheep of the community who have a way of scaring any who don't conform. These "enlightened" followers join together and figure out for whom they all will vote. They take over school boards, city councils, country departments, federal executive, legislative and judicial positions and before you know it, we live under fascism fighting wars with other fascists.
Anti-immigration places blame on immigrants instead of USA and Mexican practices that support people from other countries to come here, not realizing the changes taking place here are so draconian, that I think we are going to see a movement out of this country. I am tempted.
The article you cited, published in 2011, stated
"Volunteers on an immigrant-rights group’s hot line said that since then (new anti-immigration laws) they have received more than 1,000 calls from pregnant women afraid to go to the hospital, crime victims afraid to go the police, parents afraid to send their children to school."
Gee, I don't know. Albertans, do you have more compassionate laws?
Well look at it this way. Alabama can never outdumb Mississippi.