Thursday, October 26, 2006

More on Tennessee Senate Race

Here's a good story in Salon about Harold Ford appealing to church folks.

The discussion is interesting, and I want to respond to two posts here. The first is extremely negative to the South:

Ford is suddenly down after the targeting by two racist ads, including one in which his skin is colorized darker and a radio ad where references are repeatedly made to him being "black." These ads were selectively targeted to the most redneck districts in Tennessee, places which consistently score in the lowest 10% on IQ scores, home to the greatest concentration of the morbidly obese - people who have literally eaten themselves to death, something which a pig is not even dumb enough to do. It is exactly here where dumb-as-rocks rednecks will vote their racism, bigotry and general meanness over their own economic interests. They are literally too dumb to know they are being played.

Now a very well stated response:

Whatever Ford may gain in the pews, he'll lose in the sticks. I'm a Tennessean. I know. The "Where De White Women" ads have been running near constantly and believe me, they're working a charm. The Republicans always know the sleaziest, most denigrating ways to pander to the lowest common denominator -- and in the Deep South that's good ole racism, plain and simple. If you people only knew how many "W" stickers are still proudly displayed, on both Lexus SUVs and monoxide-spewing Chevy pickups. This is the land of Toby Keith, Dollywood and Larry the Cable Guy.

I believe Jesus would probably vote Democratic. But Tennesseans will vote for "Billionaire Bob" Corker come November. And we'll all be lesser for it.

Ok, here's the truth, as I see it:

1) Ford can't win, indeed because of racism, so I give on that point, and its a huge testimony to where I live.

2) Its still wrong to generalize about the South the way dude did in the first post. This thing about "lowest IQ" and obesity is no different in its bigotry than the people he decries.

3) I believe IQ is a BELL SHAPED CURVE. I believe research backs me up on that. Give rural Southern people an IQ test based on agriculture, they win. Give them one based on San Fransisco "culture", they lose. Its that simple. But intelligence is a STATISTICALLY PREDICTABLE DISTRIBUTION across any population.

4) Please remember this the next time you hear someone with a Southern dialect, and you tend to automatically assume they aren't quite bright. Its simply not true.

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