Saturday, March 19, 2011

civil rights pilgrimage - day 1

I haven’t spent that much time in the south yet, and haven’t seen much- it being my first day. I suppose the most pertinent thing that I can reflect is my own prejudice. I was going in to this thing trying not to have any expectations, but it was hard not to be on the lookout for twangy voices and a mass of confederate flags. What really surprised me was how close the south (so far) is to home. It could be because I haven’t interacted with much of anyone local thus far, but if someone had told me that I was somewhere on the east coast as opposed to the south I would have believed them.
I mean, I have seen gas stops with NASCAR jackets in them, along with a few confederate flags. I’m just wondering where the south that “I know” is. Is it a question of having not travelled far enough yet or that it doesn’t exist? Maybe the racism I’ve been expecting is dispersed randomly just like it would be anywhere else. Maybe it’s because we’ve only been in cities so far.
At any rate, I’m able to keep a much more open mind now. It’s beautiful down here and I’ve been wrong this far, right?

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