It’s pretty rare when I’m sideswiped, and apparently such is the case for Daniel Hannan, British Member of Pariliament, which led him to make this observation…
America is an extraordinary country. Every time you think you’ve got it sussed, it surprises you. It is the sheer diversity of the US that makes anti-Americanism so perverse.
Norm Leahy over at Tertium Quids posted this story about Daniel Hannan’s address to a rural southern GOP committee. Hannan, who is an outspoken conservative and a champion of liberty, scolds the Republican Party for forgetting that it gained popularity for its early stance on state’s rights and individual liberty but had since abandoned that platform to tilt at windmills beyond its purvey.
Let’s just say that he had an encounter he was not anticipating. I don’t LOL often. But I LOL’d for this one.
Here’s Hannan’s story….
Last year, I found myself addressing the Republican committee of a rural county in America’s Deep South. Its members looked much as I had expected members of a Republican committee in the Deep South to look: rugged and sunburned. During the question and answer session, I was asked why the GOP, having dominated late twentieth century politics, was faring so badly.
I replied that the party’s most serious mistake had been its retreat from localism. The Republicans started winning in the 1960s when they embraced states’ rights and the devolution of power. They started losing forty years later when they abandoned these principles. The audience growled its approval and so, perhaps incautiously, I began to list the areas where Bush administration had foolishly extended central power, ranging from the rise in federal spending to the attempt to strike down state laws legalising same-sex unions. When I mentioned same-sex unions, a growl passed through the room, and I winced inwardly: this, I thought, was perhaps not the wisest example to have offered a Republican committee in the Deep South.
Sure enough, after I had finished, a man with a beard and a red baseball cap sauntered up to me.
“Son,” he said, “Ah ’preciate you comin’, an’ Ah ’greed with most of wut you said. But Ah must disagree with your position on so-called homosexual marriage.”
He paused to hitch his jeans up his great belly, looking into the middle distance.
“Far as Ah kin see, not bein’ under any pressure to git married is one of the main advantages Ah enjoy as a gay man.”
Norm Leahy’s blog at Tertium Quids is terrific. If you ain’t goin’ there you ain’t livin’.