Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Georgia - Believe it or not, on of the most politically active states in the Union

Often the South, esp. the "Deep South", gets characterizes as resistant to new ideas. And sure, this is not totally wrong. But I think it is misleading. In fact, when it comes to politics, the big cities of the South (I'm not so much speaking of the rural areas) are some of the most vibrant and politically active places in the country. This fact gets less visibility because the activism isn't so much about pushing the envelope (as is, for example, California), but it is more about coming to terms with the past and dealing with society that is constantly changing. In opposition to the Midwest (where I've been living for the past couple of years), it seem to me that people in the South are more willing to state their views openly to each other, even if they don't agree. Sometimes the sparks fly, but at least there is a continued discussion.

Notice that my home state of Georgia is a prime example of the sort of political activism I'm talking about. The fact is that the 2008 presidential candidates of two non-mainstream but important political parties are from Georgia.
  • Bob Bar: Formerly a Republican representative of Georgia's 7th congressional district, he became a libertarian and is now the 2008 presidential candidate for the Libertarian Party
  • Cynthia McKinney: Formerly a democrat representing Georgia's 4th district, she is now the 2008 presidential candidate for the Green Party
In recent memory, Georgia has been home to two of the most important political figures. I'm referring, of course, to Jimmy Carter and Newt Gingrich. Two other figures of note are Zell Miller, who as you may remember came out in support of G.W. against John Kerry in 2004 (and delivered a raucus speach at the RNC), and Sam Nunn, who has been floated as a potential VP for Obama.

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