Residents of the American South are used to seeing their home region depicted in stereotyped derision. But how would most Southerners respond if they had an opportunity, in a reasonable conversation, to describe the South to outsiders?
The historic realignment of southerners from the Democratic Party to the Republican Party stands as one of the most dramatic and consequential developments of the past century. However, recent research offers hopeful signs for regional Democrats.
It is surely an irony of our political moment that as we marked the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, we are witnessing the return of the strategy of "massive resistance" -- this time not against a black president and his agenda.
It's a continuing game of racial politics -- now played by both blacks and whites in more sophisticated manner without traditional perversities -- in a regional system still struggling with historic black-white disparities and tensions.
Barbour's remarks about Confederate History Month and slavery reveal how easy forgetfulness can free one from the burdens of the past, and sanction callousness towards the dead and living walking in your backyard.