I’ve written more times than I count about my home state’s negative side: poverty, politics, you know. This week, that doggone Roy Moore was at it again, denying same-sex marriage with more convoluted states-rights logic. But did you also notice that yesterday AL.com reported about professor at Tuskegee who had made a breakthrough in cancer research? Amid Moore’s prevalence in the news cycle, I guarantee that story got less traffic than it deserved.
It’s hard to find good news about Alabama when you’re sifting through Robert Bentley suing not to accept refugees and Richard Shelby’s ads that he’ll stand up to Pres. Obama. (Just to be clear, by the time Shelby gets re-elected in November, Barack Obama will have barely two months left in office.)
I use the hashtag #alabamagood, because there actually is so much down here to praise. We at home in Alabama, and you folks who don’t live down here, need to be reminded that Alabama may be poor and struggling in so many ways, but we’re pretty damn remarkable in other ways. A lot of people choose to judge us or stereotype our state based on a few high-profile people, but dammit, that’s not all of us!
I mark posts with #alabamagood, because when people think of my home state, I want them to think of that lady physicist at Tuskegee and of The Drive-By Truckers and Alabama Shakes and St. Paul and the Broken Bones and Andrew Beck Grace making films and EAT South and Jones Valley Urban Farm and Belle Chevre and Good People Brewing and Blue Pants Brewery and Red Clay Brewing and Lowe Mill and Standard Deluxe and Kentuck and Saturn Birmingham and The Rural Studio . . . not Roy Moore and that kind of stuff. I’m talking about #alabamagood.
We who live in Alabama have to talk about, write about, post about the good stuff, too. We certainly can’t ignore our problems, but we can give our best attention to people that are actually worthy of our best attention.