A long time ago when all this hate the socialist federal government began – must have been the Reagan years – Senator Fritz Hollings from South Carolina [of all places] spoke to his issue in story format where he listed not just several instances of socialism but dozens of them. I looked but could not find it.
Hemingway it brings to mind another true story.
A few years ago, before President Obama was elected the second time, a new neighbor arrived across the street with Colorado plates. I was excited expecting someone now on the street who wasn’t armed and hated Mexicans more than Negroes. You know, someone I might be able to talk politics with and not be afraid of getting shot.
Soon after moving in I noticed Bob on a ladder cleaning his gutters, he was large, had a little pony tail and in his Sixties. I walked over to introduce myself. He climbed down we shook hands, made small talk and he sat on the grass to remove his sandals and then pulled off his socks to proudly present little confederate flags painted on all his toenails. So much for Colorado.
A few months later I ordered too much mulch and asked him if he wanted it as it was disrupting my driveway. He did so I supplied a shovel and he backed his pickup to the pile near the garage and began filling it. I joked that luckily I had only one shovel and sat on a bench to make small talk.
First thing he asked me was about my eRacism bumper sticker on my car. He couldn’t seem to grasp it even with an explanation. He asked me about President Obama, not wanting to get into it I just said he was okay with me.
He stopped shoveling and leaned his forehead against the garage wall doing finger spins with both free hands. He explained that when that name came up it caused him so much stress his VA doctor has him on Xanax and Prosac. I asked what makes him so upset, to which he replied,
“That NWORD is a damn Socialist!”
I asked about the VA. Though he saw no combat during the Vietnam era he won an agent orange case and has been on full VA disability since the eighties. I asked if the VA gave him both the Xanax and the Prosac. No, he gets the Prosac from his Medicare doctor. I asked if he needed to work since the eighties and he said the disability was enough as long as his wife worked, but now that he is also collecting Social Security she quit her job and they do bourbon by the pool most days.
I had to ask:
“So Bob, let me get this straight, you are on full VA disability for 30 years, on Medicare, Social Security and you don’t like the President because he is a socialist?”
“You don’t see the problem there?”
“What do you mean?”
“If that NWORD gets elected again I don’t know what I will do?”
I haven’t talked to him since. Ambulances come and go but he seems no worse for wear. He doesn’t seem to be lost in Jesus or into guns, just that NWORD problem. But in his defense – after gathering quite a bit of voting and polling information – I must say that Bob is no different than MOST white voters in Texas, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina and Oklahoma.
It’s that white gravy.