So I thought this was a very striking observation by Jamelle Bouie, a black political columnist:
"White supremacy built a politics of racist antagonism. Blacks were substandard people & thus received substandard schools, services, & law. Anything public had to be kept separate from blacks, and if that wasn’t possible, it had to be degraded..."Further down in the same post, the author links to a tragic story of what happened to ACA in Mississippi. It's a worthy of Shakespearean treatment. There are the heroes who try to step above the usual bitterness, and the banal villains who shred those attempts and congratulate themselves while doing it.
I'm a northerner and hardly know about the south. But when I read these kinds of stories, and consider what I do know about the south and about Arizona (settled by southerners, and where my parents now live), I start to see the patterns that Bouie writes about. Why do northern states spend more on education than southern states? Entrenched racism and the resulting antipathy to public services could be the answer. What a sad answer that is. And is it just a 'neutral' cultural difference, or is it actually a inferior culture that should change? I can't be a fair advocate for southern culture, but I'll keep my ears open for such an advocate.