A few years ago, I wrote a book called “God, Guns, Grits and Gravy,” warning the coastal and Beltway elites that they were wildly out of touch with the majority of their fellow Americans in what they dismissively call “Flyover Country.” They obviously didn’t read it (maybe I should’ve put Oprah’s name on the cover), and as a result, we have President Trump (which I also predicted, to their great scorn and amusement).
But now, I must tip my duck hunting cap to former National Public Radio CEO Ken Stern, who actually broke out of the limousine liberal echo chamber and ventured forth into scary conservative America on a safari he chronicles in his own new book, “Republican Like Me: How I Left the Liberal Bubble and Learned to Love the Right.”
In a piece for the New York Post, Stern describes how he was stunned to discover that the savages in far-flung wildernesses such as Georgia, Texas, Ohio and Kentucky were nice, decent, articulate people who have legitimate reasons for believing the things they do. He talked to young Evangelicals and discovered they weren’t close-minded racists but compassionate idealists who actually thought about social injustice and volunteered their own time to help the less fortunate. He went pig hunting with people who believe in gun rights and found they were not crazy gun nuts or white supremacists (as he put it, his hunting party consisted of “a Hispanic ex-soldier, a young black family man, a Serbian immigrant and a Jew from DC.”) He learned that unemployed blue collar workers weren’t intolerant deplorables but actually had good reasons to be upset at government policies that helped send their jobs abroad or replace them with illegal immigrants. And he realized that when working class Americans complain that the mainstream news media are smug, biased elitists who don't know them or tell the truth about them, they have a valid point.
Unfortunately, he still doesn’t grasp the entire picture (for instance, he claims Trump’s slams at the media are “terribly inappropriate,” after admitting that they are richly deserved.) But at least it’s a start.
Now, maybe if we can get everybody else at NPR, PBS, CBS, ABC, MSNBC, CNN, the New York Times, HuffPo, etc. etc. etc. out into the woods to go pig hunting, maybe they could all learn a few lessons about America. Just let me know when they’re going. I don’t want to be in the woods when they’re trying to figure out how a rifle works.
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