Updated: Jun 3, 2020
I am an American Southerner, born and raised.
True, I am a first generation Southerner, born of parents who considered themselves citizens of the world, rather than of the American South, but still, I am a native and an insider. I have benefitted my entire life from my association with the South. I could attend the most elite New England college and graduate school because I fulfilled a gaping lack in a demographic wherein the pool of qualified candidates from my region of the country was small, making me appear more capable by comparison.
I was a debutante, raised in a small city with an Old World level of privileged existence comparable to any, anywhere. Like all well-to-do Southerners, the advantages and lifestyle I enjoyed were inflated by an incredibly low cost of living in the South, built on the back of an economic hierarchy of cheap Black labor, the legacy of slavery in the former Confederacy.
Senator Lindsey Graham spoke in Bubba code today, defending and re-utilizing the Southern White Man’s tongue-in-cheek code and common drawl. ‘Hey ya’ll we old rich White fellas are getting lynched too! It is not a victimization limited to Blacks who do not know their place. It can happen to Us, “superior”, “blameless” White Good ‘Ole Boys as well.’
Trump is an honorary “Good Ole Boy", who is welcomed and worshipped, lock, stock and barrel by my former home state of South Carolina.
For those of you who have never immersed yourself in Southern culture, please allow me to translate. Southerners stick together. It is the only way to continue covering up for our sordid, unrelenting history of isolationism, cliquishness, bigotry, repression and violence.
Graham uses the legacy and taboo word of “lynching” today, which should be worn on our breasts as a badge of indigenous shame, as a heavily laden word weapon to retaliate against those who would challenge White immunity from all scrutiny and accountability. When you are part of the White Supremacy Club, your compatriots turn a blind eye to all infractions.
What matters is to maintain the status quo, the comfortable existence Whites have reveled in for centuries in the American South. The South is the bastion of aversion to the sociological changes which bring diversity, and tolerance for those who are "different".
This is how the South has survived, and why the removal of the Confederate flag from the State House in Columbia took far too many decades to complete. To suspend our clear and indisputable history of Southern guilt and complicity into the ether of double-talk, with a wink, a drink, and a nod, is the Southern way.
The Southern methodology for longevity and resilience is now the playbook incarnate of the American Republican Party. In the Deep South, there really is no way to know where centuries of oppression end, and politics begin.
For official documentation regarding lynching in the America South, click on the following link: https://eji.org/sites/default/files/lynching-in-america-third-edition-summary.pdf