Finally – maybe Georgia can start celebrating a new day and a new way of considering things . . .
The text reads –
>One of seven historic paintings hang in lobby
One of seven historic paintings hang in the lobby of the Georgia Department of Agriculture Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2010, in Atlanta. The incoming Georgia agriculture commissioner wants to remove the paintings including one depicting idealized versions of slavery and put them into storage when he takes office next month. The paintings have hung in the lobby of a state building for half a century without causing a stir.
My Note –
That last sentence was theirs, not mine. And, it reminds me that there is still no excuse for some things including the recent Christmas special called “Georgia’s Hidden Treasures” that followed the same pathetically wrong format that has followed the same set of thinking year after year after year. I’ve been wanting to say something about it. It was on the Atlanta station that would be channel 2 – and as usual, showed some little town – I think it was Madison in this case, with an antebellum house which by some magnanimous gesture and backroom deal wasn’t burnt to the ground, etc., etc., etc. and the proud woman that restored it to its pre-civil war charm, etc., etc., etc., ad infinitum,. ad nauseum –
And, then the prerequisite handling of some grotesque medical saw that the original home’s owner used on the soldiers for an example of what things were like when . . .
and a quick note that there were no anesthetics or morphine available or antiseptics because the supply lines had been hit or hijacked – etc. Merry Christmas, y’all.
Then, the prerequisite piece of how some children with a debilitating disability of some kind are getting such a wondrous thing from a program of some kind that the people in Georgia are kind and generous enough to make available to them and how wonderful they feel – etc., etc., etc., except that someone needs to tell those people in Georgia to stop treating people with disabilities like shit the rest of the year and like something less than human in every interaction involving health care systems and by any other community system, including churches and local government groups.
Okay, – but every year – every time – at every occasion – do we really have to hear and see those same stories shown the same way on and on and on while nothing really changes? What is it we need to do – tell these core Southern families that they’ve indeed restored the South to its former glory and reclaimed it with their hard work so they can let go and us all get onto something else now – like, for instance the twentieth century or even maybe – the twenty-first century where now is?
Don’t tell me that stuff anymore and say it means a Merry Christmas in Atlanta or in Georgia – it doesn’t. There is more to Talk About that matters for one thing and for another, this is a new day and a new century. Atlanta is not those things anymore and where it is still like that, it just has to change.
Enough is enough.
Believe it or not, I had a lot more written when I went back to tweak this and when I published it, the saved autodraft and the published version had nothing but the first paragraph with its link to the story about the slavery painting being taken down from the Georgia state agriculture department lobby. Fortunately, I had copied this much over to the document I keep open, but had not done that for the remaining part I had written. And, it was really good too. I hate that. And, I don’t know why it happened.
Oh well, I don’t want to try re-writing it. I can’t believe that happened, so disgusting. And, it was really good stuff – even though I already said that. I’ll say this instead –
After being in New York around Thanksgiving and being astounded at the presence of mind people had, the kindness and the generosity they had with their time and efforts to stop and give directions or answer dumb questions even though they were in a hurry – (and to stop and wait a moment before walking across in front of my camera when I was taking pictures on busy sidewalks of things all over Manhattan and New York) – I came back to Georgia and realized several things. One of which resulted in this list –
Reasons people in the South have for hating people, disliking them, being rude to them, excluding them, and generally acting like jackasses towards them –
1. Long hair on men or women. Women should know better and wear their hair like everyone else does.
2. Non-blond hair, non-page boy flip styled, not cut to shoulder length and not smooth hair.
3. Grey hair – on anyone.
4. White hair – on anyone.
5. Clothing that didn’t come from the top three stores this last month when it was supposed to be the thing to buy.
6. Poor – whether related to them or not. However, poor blood relations are treated worse than the junkyard’s rabid dogs.
7. Rich people, although everybody worships them to their faces – there isn’t a thing a rich person can say that won’t be repeated in a way to look like something other than its intention (behind their back by their Southern “friends”).
8. Anyone who drives a car that isn’t whatever that Southern family thinks is the car to be driving.
9. Anyone who has grass in their front yard over an inch and a half tall.
10. Anyone with red hair.
11. Anyone with shoes that didn’t come from at least Macy’s or Belk’s.
12. Everyone who holds an office – in anything, any office.
13. Everyone who doesn’t have a job, or who had a job and lost it, or who had a job and lost it and didn’t have the good sense to keep from getting laid off in the first place and couldn’t keep a job . . .
14. Anyone who lives in the part of town which is considered downtown. Unless they live downtown, in which case – everyone who lives out in the suburbs and beyond. That especially applies to those who live out in the suburbs, nobody understands anybody who would live in the beyond past that.
15. All the people who went to college. Or, all the people who didn’t go to college – although both groups hate all those who started to go to college and didn’t, as well as all those that went to college and didn’t finish it.
16. Every smart person.
16a. except when something needs to be looked up in the dictionary or the computer needs fixing.
17. All the people that aren’t from here.
18. All the people that were from here but left.
19. Anyone that wasn’t born here. Although with many families that are from elsewhere and had births of their children here – they don’t count for much either and its alright to hate them too according to the Southerners I’ve met and experienced.
20. Anyone whose house isn’t painted in the three basic colors allowed by polite society in America.
21. Anyone that doesn’t talk right.
22. Anyone that doesn’t have straight white teeth.
23. Anyone that is fat, anyone that is skinny, anyone that is cussing (unless they are relations) and anyone that goes to any other church or denomination of church, and especially anyone of some religion other than theirs.
24. All the people that work in television, the press, media, radio, news reporters, writers of any kind and anybody else that doesn’t have a “real job”.
25. Anybody that is real smart with those computers because none of them can be trusted.
26. Anybody that isn’t an American nationality. I don’t know what that is but the list is quite extensive apparently. It includes all those nationalities which came to America from somewhere else, no matter how far back – but it makes no sense to me.
27. Anybody who is wearing a pants style that went out of fashion last year – or in some parts of Atlanta and Marietta – anybody wearing a pants style that wasn’t in the new magazines’ fashion layouts this year or last week.
28. Anybody who has any member in their family that didn’t vote the way they did last time, especially voting on a different party.
29. Anybody that doesn’t believe the same, act the same, say the same kinds of things and know not to say anything else.
30. Anybody that thinks they can be better, do better, learn better or that works to be better than they are now – because that doesn’t do anything but shame everybody else.
31. All the people who work for companies, or own them, that make money and all the people who work for companies or own them – that are losing money and going bankrupt.
32. All the people whose houses went into foreclosure for any reason.
33. All the people who don’t go to their church and should know better.
And, yes – there’s more, but I’ll leave it at that. See, they don’t really discriminate against people – they’re shitty to everybody. Its just the reasons that change.