Here's a little something I wrote about prejudice against Southerners. I hope y'all appreciate it and learn a little from it. *Note: I excluded the paragraph concerning the Confederate Flag in the interest of preventing any heated debates on the forum. Everyone has seen Southerners made fun of and joked about. Most of it is all in good humor, and I can laugh along with it, because I know that those making the jokes truly don't believe what they are saying. I often laugh at myself, as well. I think it is highly important to be able to laugh at yourself. People call us redneck, white trash, inbred, hick. Most of the time, it doesn't bother me, because, as I said, I know they mean no disrespect. But there are some instances, which we have all encountered, when a Southerner is the victim of insults and accusations of stupidity and barbaric, animal-like tendencies. Many, many people picture a Southerner as a low-income, low-hygiene, unintelligent person of little or no class. These people ridicule and inslult Southerners for being who they are, and never stop to look past society's stereotypcial "redneck" to see for themselves what qualities make up a Southerner. There is no other way to describe this but prejudice. I do not claim that all Southern people are highly intelligent; I simply scoff the prejudiced notion that the majority of Southern people are incompetent. Are you to tell me that all Northerners or Midwesterners are intelligent? Stupid people exist everywhere. Americans throughout the nation deride Southerners' sports such as hunting and fishing as barbaric, primitive, and inhumane. While the debate on the humanity of such sports can be discussed another time, people fail to see that Southerners take interest in hunting and fishing primarily as a part of their heritage. The South is abundant in wildlife, and generations of Southerners have hunted and fished this rich land. Hunting and fishing boils down to enjoying nature and its solitude, simple pleasures of life. This is another misunderstanding of Southern people; people assume that since Southerners love simple things in life, they have no taste for class and are simple-minded. This could not be more false. Being able to enjoy the simple delectations in life allows you to enjoy life much more, and lets you see what many people take for granted. Many Americans think Southerners have no class, yet another example of prejudice-born stereotypes. Having class means different things to different people. To some, to those who view Southerners as having no class, class is thing of high society; fancy cars, expensive dining, and cultured tastes. But to Southerners, class is being polite and hospitable, even to your enemies. Class is knowing who you are, and respecting others. Redneck is a word of many meanings. Like class, it can mean different things to different people. The best definition of redneck I have heard is simply being happy with what God has given you in life. It doesn't mean you live in a trailor park or have a mullet; it means you find pleasure in the simple aspects of life, you are happy with who you are, your heritage, and what life has alotted you. You make the best of what you've been given. Redneck isn't limited to Southern, low-income, rural areas. Anyone can be a redneck, a doctor, a CEO, the president, even you. Ignorance breeds prejudice. Don't make presumptions based on the outwardness of a Southerner. Next time you encounter a situation where Southerners or the South in general is being spoken poorly of, take a minute and evaluate your knowledge and personal experience of Southerners and the wonderful hospitality of the South and use reason instead of making prejudiced assumptions based on a stereotypical image.