The Thing About Kentucky

Kentucky is all the rage among the headlines lately.  This time it isn’t the basketball team causing the attention, it is the actions of a clerk.  It is the center of a debate as to whether the Supreme Court of unelected officials has the right to completely disregard the sovereignty of the state.  With all of this attention, there has been an incredible amount of bias against the state.  I have watched people who are passionate about freedom to marry who they want and hatred towards intolerance, speak a myriad of unintelligible slurs against the citizens of this state.

“We are inbred.”

“We are racist.”

“We are uneducated.”

“The only good thing to come from Kentucky was an empty bus.”

Isn’t that funny.  I mean these people preaching intolerance sure have a funny way of expressing kindness and love toward the vast population of Kentuckians.

One could note that Abraham Lincoln did in fact come from Kentucky, as did Muhammad Ali, Whitney Young Jr., Robert Penn Warren, and Cassius Clay.  All prominent activists against racism, intelligent contributors to society.

I can only presume that people who slander the citizens of my state, have never actually set foot onto the soil here.  Is it all peaches and cream?  No sir, but my goodness, it does have an amazing allure.

I wasn’t born in this state.  However, I have lived here for the majority of my life.  In that lifetime, I have had the privilege to travel to other states and countries, but there truly is no place like home.

Having lived here for over 20+ years, I have never met a person married to their relative.  This is odd though right, I am quite the social butterfly, aren’t all of my neighbors inbred?  Actually, no they are not.  My neighbors are many other things though. They are able to fix a broken vehicle, they can remove a fallen tree from the road, they can grow and hunt for their survival.  Oh and they can make clothes if need be, build a fire without a lighter, and know how to make shelter to weather a storm.  In fact, should the stock markets crash; there wouldn’t be any rioting and violence, they’d just get on with their day making due and surviving with awesomeness.

You see, in my home, my children get to breathe fresh air.  We do not value materialistic things, instead we value working the land and helping our fellow man.  My kids can go outside and play, they know what hard work is and how fulfilling it is to eat food they have grown from a seed.  Many of my neighbors know the same amazing feeling.

My water heater blew up in my house last year, and my neighbor came over with his son to help me.  He didn’t act like it was a burden, he didn’t bring his smart phone over to ignore my needs and check his facebook every five minutes.  He just came to help.

I can go to the grocery store with all five of my children, and I don’t have to worry about leaving my purse in the cart while shopping from my detailed list.  At night there aren’t any people trying to break into my car in order to see what they can get, and people aren’t sizing up my home.  Crime happens everywhere, but at least here, people have some respect towards others.  Men still open the doors for women, people I don’t even know wave at me when I’m driving down the road, and if my hands are full someone almost always offers to help me.

My husband builds computers from scratch.  He’s most definitely not the uneducated fool that we are so often described as.  There are many people with a high intellect here, but you know, that just doesn’t seem to matter.  What I notice most are the people here who actually care about someone other than themselves.  I notice that instead of being repulsed by the presence of my two children with Down syndrome, people embrace them with kindness and acceptance.  No one looks at another man’s ripped jeans and dirty t shirt and thinks of him as a piece of trash.

The state is home to some of the most beautiful sights.  The hills, the mountains, the farms, the skies, the caves, the lakes, the horses, the love….it cannot be accurately portrayed through words.  It is a feeling of peace and contentment that a person just has to be here to feel.  Kentucky is home to many of the poorest counties in America, and yet many of the residents (myself included) wouldn’t trade their home for anything. We aren’t standing in the streets ranting and raving against the government because we have two grocery stores, and neither of them carry a variety of fresh produce.  The food deserts that are described by mainstream media are here, but the government and media attention is not.

You see the thing about Kentucky, is that we have bore the brunt of criticism and jokes for a very long time.  It’s okay.  People around these parts are made of much more than superficiality.  They don’t really care what other’s have to say about them, it isn’t going to stop them from being who they are, and it isn’t going to stop them from living their life.

They’ve got work to do anyway.

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