I was talking to someone who just moved to Tennessee who saw this state through fresh eyes. When you write and talk about politics as much as I do, it’s always neat to hear the good things. Yes, campers, we have good things in this state and we need to focus on those things as well.
The rolling hills and vibrant seas of green when the corn starts coming in during the summer in west Tennessee. Standing on the roof of the Peabody hotel high above the Mississippi River in Memphis where you sea miles and miles of dark flowing mystery for miles going further than the eye can see. Small town football games and Scott’s Barbecue nestled in a small building in Lexington, the aquarium in Chattanooga, the
beauty of downtown Knoxville and on one of the highest hills in west Nashville you can experience not only a bit of the country and still see the urban beauty of the downtown area are all the things he mentioned. How beautiful so many of our college campuses are in both urban and rural areas. Deep lakes haunted with history such as Paris Landing or the quiet beauty of Nickajack Lake as you make the southern drive down I-24 and the list goes on and on and on.
He was right.
For all the political nonsense we hear day in and day out, Tennessee is pretty cool. Although I listed many stereotypes above, it is still a reminder that this is a place to be proud of. It’s a shame that so many of our elected leaders have stereotyped very good people in this state in negative ways (I thank daily that Honey Boo Boo Child is not from Tennessee although I must admit my intrigue with Uncle Poodle) but it’s always good to remember the positive. Taking a moment to realize that some of us were born here as I was but so many people I know made a cognitive choice to make their homes in Tennessee. They did that for a reason because this state has a lot to offer.
There are times that I want to scream at the political winds that swarm Tennessee “THIS IS MY STATE TOO!”
When I moved to Nashville two years ago, friendly people basically adopted me. I have spent holidays when I couldn’t get home with folks I didn’t know before. I’ve made new acquaintances who have been there for me. I’ve maintained relationships with folks I knew before due to the online community that are stronger than ever. I’ve made missteps, I admit, but I’m human and I wasn’t treated like a leper. These are the Tennesseans I know that are good, kind, hard-working and passionate. These are the people that represent the spirit of this state.
When politicians call down-on-their luck Tennesseans lazy, I cringe because for the most part, it just isn’t true. When I see the DesJarlais hypocrisy of last week, The people I’ve met who aren’t even political are just as disgusted as I am, and this was on both sides of the political aisle.
We are a good people and there is nothing wrong taking pride in our individual communities and their unique qualities. There is not a damned thing wrong feeling pride in the good things in our state. There is, and I reiterate, not a damn thing wrong with being an ambassador.
And there is nothing wrong with telling people leaving a stain on what we love to stop the asshattery and to stop it now.
That’s up to us.