Bob and Brooke read from a few of your letters.
Seriously?Somebody's offended by the term, "the Heartland?" In my experience, it's often used by midwesterners unselfconsciously, as a term of pride.
I was also surprised that some considered the term, "The Arab Street," pejorative. I don't see it as any attempt to peg every middle-Easterner (sorry; "Eastern Mediterranean") into some exact homogeneous category, just as "European" encompasses a variety of people.
Just 2-3 years ago, there was a discussion about the economics of "Main Street" vs. "Wall Street." Did any middle-class Americans find "Main Street" pejorative? Did they think it pegged them into a hole, with no ideological wiggle room? I doubt it.
This is all much ado about nothing, in IMHO.
A couple years ago, folks from the Van Abbemuseum in Eindhoven, The Netherlands teamed up with the Smart Museum in Chicago for an interdisciplinary research art road trip in search of the Heartland. Their findings have been shared in exhibitions at both museums, and a Heartland book.You can see more at their website
Brooke Gladstone left her listeners with a false impression. She failed to mention the ACORN tapes were investigated and found to be frauds. I suspect another investigation will prove the same thing about the Planned Parenthood tapes.
However, I didn't hear any of those facts in Gladstone's story. I came away with the impression the charges were essentially true but the method to gather them was flawed.
It seems the stenographic ("not my job to find the truth") tendencies of the MSM have found a home at OTM.
I agree with the guy from Marquette that "the Heartland" isn't a very apt phrase. It's also hard to define just what "the Midwest" is. For me, it doesn't include any state that joined the Confederacy, but I here states as far afield as Texas sometimes put in the region. I prefer terms such as "Great Lakes", "Ohio Valley", etc.
My number one pet peeve, however is "The Rust Belt". It's incredibly insulting.
As someone who grew up in "the heartland" but got a snooty east-coast education...the people who most vocally endorse "the heartland's" virtue are people who can their own food and listen to country music. Now, I can my own food and listen to country music and don't believe it makes anyone any more virtuous than anyone else, but a lot of people I grew up with disagree. Anyone who has listened to country music any time in the last decade or two can tell you this; songs talking up the homegrown, blue-collar, salt-of-the-earth character of good red-blooded Americans abound. In fact, there's even a George Strait song called Heartland (it's on YouTube, of course).
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