What Was Great About the South?

Today I saw a map of the AIDS epidemic on io9 and thought to myself, “Damn, it must suck to be in the South!”

And then I thought, well it does suck in a general way to be from the South. Generally. For example, you would be generally poorer, generally less educated, generally more likely to depend on handouts from the government like food stamps, and generally more likely to suffer crime. In fact, you would be hard pressed to find much good about being in the South unless you are religious or have a predilection for hurricanes and tornados.

Seriously, can someone remind me what was supposed to be great about the South?

5 Comments Categorized: thoughts

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5 Responses to “What Was Great About the South?”

  1. Nob Hill Ken says  (June 7th, 2011 at 01:38:29 )

    Food, music, and good manners! Seriously, the churchiness drives me batshit, but I enjoy the hell out of the time I spend in Louisiana and Mississippi.

    The ‘big question’ in my mind is how much of the economic disparity between North and South is truly due to meteorological and agricultural diadvantages and how much is due to politics and policy bias. I’ve done zero research, btw…just thinking aloud.

  2. douglas says  (June 7th, 2011 at 07:23:02 )

    I’m not sure about your “big question”… Despite the weather there’s no reason that I’m aware of that industrialization never happened on a large scale in the deep south. Not that this answers an entire economic disparity. I have the feeling that long term issues, especially social, economic and political policies, have something to do with it. After all, you have places like Atlanta and the Dallas areas doing quite well.

    It’s not just North and South, BTW, but even compared to the sparse Mountain States the South suffers in contrast.

  3. douglas says  (June 7th, 2011 at 09:02:45 )

    As an aside, I hope no one thinks I don’t think the South has/had contributed nothing to America. This isn’t true at all. There have been a number of cultural, political and social contributions, and not all of them even bad ;)

    My musings were purely that things suck there now, in a general sense.

  4. Andy W. says  (June 7th, 2011 at 10:13:44 )

    I would say my two guess are socioeconomics and culture/heritage. One the coastal cities are way move expansive to live in. Two, they’ve always lived in the south and their parents lived there.

  5. Nob Hill Ken says  (June 7th, 2011 at 21:26:09 )

    @ Doug: “there’s no reason that I’m aware of that industrialization never happened on a large scale in the deep south.”

    Very true, that industrialization hasn’t happened; I’m curious to know whether any *significant* federal funding was floated to southern states back in the day to incentivize such development (’cause it ain’t free)—thus the concern with politics and policy.