Dear National Media,
I know it’s so tempting, and I know you want it oh, so badly. I mean, I get it. What’s not to love? The characters look like they have been ripped out of a Coen brothers movie and plopped right down in Gallant, Alabama. Gallant, Alabama?!? Could that be any more perfect? If that town didn’t actually exist, that is exactly what I would make up to name it.
There is a horse named Sassy, a bleached- blonde wife who looks like she could have been on every episode of “Dance Moms,” a mall security guard and our hero, a former judge who wears a cowboy hat, wields a tiny gun and speaks like he lived a century-and-a-half ago.
A judge who for a time was a competitive kickboxer and lived on an Australian cattle ranch and wrote poetry. A judge who as a young lawyer “suited” young ladies by calling their high schools to ask them out or by cruising the mall. A judge who may have done much, much worse to these young women but it’s OK because he asked their mommas’ permissions first, you see.
I understand, National Media. Stories this rich don’t happen very often. Unless you are in Alabama.
And it’s not your fault Roy Moore decided to give the Republican National Party the finger and run for U.S. Senate again. It’s news for sure. But please, please don’t act like he has a chance in hell to win his party’s primary. He does not. He will not come in dead last – that will be reserved for folks like a televangelist no one has ever heard of – but he will come in far behind reasonable candidates like Coach Tommy Tuberville, Congressman Bradley Byrne and Sec. of State John Merrill. Without question. His candidacy is nothing but a mildly entertaining sideshow that is really kind of pathetic. Nothing more.
I can tell you this because I actually live here. And I can tell you even die-hard Republicans who feel like Roy Moore was treated poorly and even conspired against by the “fake news media” with “lies” isn’t going to vote for him.
Why? Because they want to win and beat Sen. Doug Jones more than they want to be the failed avengers of Roy Moore. And they know Roy Moore is the weakest potential candidate in the field this time to face Jones.
Everyone – especially those outside of this great state – forgets the only reason Roy Moore even won the primary last time is because people were disgusted by Luther Strange’s blatant quid-pro-quo deal with our embattled governor at the time, horndog Robert Bentley. Most people think Strange should have been arrested for his actions, certainly not rewarded by being elected to the United States Senate. Roy Moore slid in there as a protest, nothing more.
And even though it all played out like it should have – the shady, arguably criminal Strange did not win in the primary nor did the pervy, twice-removed Alabama Supreme Court Justice in the general – we are given no credit for this.
Nope. The narrative instantly changed to we ALMOST elected a child molester in Alabama.
Well, we didn’t. And I’m willing to bet the percentages would play out much the same if the same situation played out in a very blue state. A Republican would barely beat his accused mall cruising, molester of an opponent. Because it’s just the tribal nature of our country now. Sadly, for the most part, people vote party, not person, even if the party somehow elects a lunatic. And that’s not just in Alabama but in Anywhere, USA.
So, hey, people who re-elected Bob Menendez amid corruption charges just because he was a Democrat and put the equally pervy Anthony Weiner in office, don’t lecture us, please.
I read a Washington Post article the other day saying how sad and embarrassed Alabamians are of our state. I am sure the reporter did find people who said that, but most of us who grew up here and love this state know it is far more complicated than that. Because we all actually know and even love the types of people the national media paints as crazed rednecks who support child molesters and even worse, Trump. We love these people even if we disagree with their politics.
I can only imagine what would be coming out of my grandfather’s mouth if he had lived in the age of Trump. One of the last arguments we ever had before he died was over one of the Clinton scandals. Young and certainly more liberal than he was, I thought I knew everything.
But this man taught me how to jug fish on the Tombigbee and shell purple hull peas and a million other things that made me love him immensely, no matter what his political views were or might have been.
Time and age and consistent disappointment in politicians I once believed in has made me the moderate who has little faith in any politician anymore, regardless of party. But it’s easy to see how people who have also been perpetually disappointed have ended up on the extreme ends of the political spectrum too.
I am not sorry or embarrassed to live in this state. I love it. It has produced some of the most talented artists, musicians, writers and innovators in this country. And I do believe they achieved such greatness because they were products of this crazy, magical and yes, sometimes even insane land, not in spite of it.
Sure, there are things I wish would change. I hate that we are still sending (for the most part) absolute idiots to the state legislature, as evidenced by this past session. But we are the ones who are sending them there, so that’s on us.
Although, in our defense, it’s often because people who would serve us well don’t really want this gig. Even really qualified, smart individuals who decide to do their civic duty as a state rep. or senator usually quit after a term or two because they see just how little they can get accomplished in that mess with those morons who have been up there for decades. So you end up with nothing but idiots, opportunists and/or the completely incompetent running for office, and we essentially have to choose if we want to send vomit or diarrhea to represent us in Montgomery. To me, this is our state’s biggest problem, not some has-been perennial politician.
So, dearest National Media, I am sure we will give you something equally mesmerizing to gawk at and ridicule very soon, but this time, I promise it’s not Roy Moore, so move along.
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