Redneckery

They are everywhere.

Almost everywhere. At gas stations. On the road. Eating in restaurants. At work. About the only place you will not find them is in a bookstore or a library.

Rednecks. Around here the sub-species is Cracker, a sort of Redneck Lite who adds beachgoing to their range.

You will know the Cracker by the usual Redneck pointers.Observe the following:

Car: He drives an American brand pickup-truck. Poorly built, over priced and bought on a liar loan amortized over three times its useful life, this vehicle is the Cracker’s suit of armor. It makes him bigger, taller, more powerful and harder than he could ever hope to be without it.

Dress: Look for cheap clothing, ill-fitted. The theme varies from quasi-cowboy to pool-boy. Mostly the image is that of under-educated dolthood, with a job to match.

Dip: Real Crackers consider a fistful of fermented tobacco sophisticated. Drooling and expectorating is their way of marking territory, in the same way dogs urinate. Mouth, throat and/or tongue cancer emphasize your dedication.

Cuisine: Burgers. Ribs. Cheap fried protein of any kind. Grits.

Beverage: Iced tea during the day. What’s laughingly thought of as “beer” in these parts – mass-market lagers – for all other occasions.

Entertainments: Big trucks. NASCAR. Bullying other road users. Anything to do with mud.

One word to encapsulate the Cracker: Thoughtlessness. To call it anti-intellectualism is to do anti-intellectuals a disservice. The Redneck’s universe extends only as far as competence; a step up to self-observance or quiet contemplation of abstracts is a step much too far. Worse is that this heedless one-dimensional outlook appears deliberate, as if stupidity were the goal.

In that, the Cracker succeeds.

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