Saturday, March 29, 2008

The Klan

20061118 KKK Ellijay (22)

Well, the Klan is operative in rural northern Georgia. (It is as well in rural South Carolina, so it's not like this is new).

The last time they were seen in these parts was in an anti-immigrant rally in 2006. (That's where the photo is from. I've no idea if the guy who uploaded them was a spectator or a symphathizer ... ). Love the bad Spanish grammar on that sign.

The rural South has changed dramatically over the past decade with a vast influx of Hispanic immigrants (both legal and illegal), highlighting again the broken immigration system of the country. The native population grows resentful, discrimination abounds, the undocumented are harassed or worse, are exploited for their labor, and the only ones who seem to benefit are the businesses who get cheap labor, and get away with violating the law with impunity. (If there is a raid, a business will get slapped with a fine. Big whoop. The unfortunate undocumented workers will have their lives turned upside down and will be sundered from their families, including US citizen children.)

Note to self: if confronted by a Klansman, say "Howdy" in your best Southern accent and burst into a spontaneous rendition of "God Bless America" followed by "Blame Canada."



Mattheus Mei said...

Hmmm... don't forget to Sing Dixie, or whistle it. That'll help, and use derogatory terms for racial minorities, that always alleviates white supremist anxieties when confronted with an uppity injun. :-P

Mac said...

How absolutely astonishing. The Klan?!

"Blame Canada" is pretty funny (actually, funny-queer rather than funny-ha ha) in this context. You will obviously not be aware that after, I suppose, Georgia, the second most lively centre of Ku Klux Klan activity in North America was, for a time, Saskatchewan in the 1920s. (Saskatchewan also briefly flirted with Prohibition till it became clear that there was a lot of money to be made in bootlegging whisky to Chicago.) Indeed, my grandfather had a brief (and to the end of his long life, deeply embarrassing) involvement with the KKK when the Loyal Orange Order imploded as its members suddenly came to the realisation that Scotch-Irish Protestant sensibilities don't make much sense in North America. (Possibly the fact that he had married a French Canadian also had some effect.) It lasted for perhaps two years. Not many blacks in Canada in those days, other than the few remaining stay-behinds from the Underground Railway and the odd black homesteader on the prairies, and they weren't much of an issue ("Really very nice folks, you know") and just who were the constituency against whom there might be a grievance? One or other of the American organisers orchestrated a cross-burning on the front lawn of Sacred Heart Academy and Grandpa and Grandma were having their children take piano and violin lessons from the nuns. It didn't make a great deal of sense, obviously.

St. Izzy said...

G sez:
Love the bad Spanish grammar on that sign.

People called Romani, they go the house.

Gashwin said...

@ Mac Saskatchewan? Who'da thunk!

@ St. Izzy: Latin doesn't count. It's a much more inflected language than Spanish :)

Right Faith said...

Hmmm...if you sing God Bless America, they're likely not to care, in fact, they may even call you a Yankee. If you say Howdy, they'll think you're from Texas...and therefore a Mejican. Better to stick with Dixie and "Y'all", sir's and ma'am's oughtta do just fine too. Don't try to humor them with wit either, they won't understand and they're about equal in humor as those Mohammedans. Just be more clever. If you need to correct them, say (in a loud way) "I tell you what..." and then correct them. Or! Tell them how smart they are and invite them to join the Minutemen down on the border. Maybe they'll ge run down by drug lords in Laredo. If I were you though, I'd be more afraid of being Catholic than being brown. I mean, I wouldn't...but if I were you I would. If you're not sure if this is funny or not, practice saying in a Stephen Colbert voice or try to imagine Louis Farrakhan saying it.