From: "John Jardine"
Subject: Re: Papers [How did we get here from 100R ?]
Date: Sun, 22 Dec 2002 21:58:16 -0000
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NNTP-Posting-Date: 22 Dec 2002 21:45:13 GMT
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Eric Bohlman wrote in message
> "John Jardine" wrote in
> > These "Rednecks" I often read about. Do they regard themselves as
> > that?, or are they just what I'd (in UK) generically know as
> > 'scumbags' 'twats' and 'wankers'. E.g aggressive, uneducated rubbish?.
> It's a poorly defined term, but in general usage it implies sort of what
> you say, along with being from the Southern part of the US or at least
> a rural area, and holding racist, anti-intellectual and possibly
> religious fundamentalist attitudes. If young, they may be fairly popular
> in school and often athletes; they aren't generally regarded as "losers"
> their own communities, even though outsiders (particular urban
> may think of them that way. It's applied mostly to males, exclusively to
> whites, and hardly ever to someone who grew up in an urban area.
> The etymology of the term is that when the Confederacy lost the US Civil
> War and slavery was abolished, a fair number of fairly spoiled young white
> men found themselves having to work in the fields performing labor
> previously performed by slaves. The slaves usually wore loose, floppy
> to protect themselves against UV exposure, but the spoiled kids refused to
> wear them because they didn't want to "act black." Therefore, their necks
> turned red from the UV, and long-term non-spoiled white field workers (who
> didn't share their hangups) dubbed them "rednecks."
> The term is a fairly offensive pejorative, and is especially offensive
> applied to someone solely on the basis of where they live and/or grew up
> without regard to their behavior and attitudes.
Eric. Thanks for the lucid description. I've now a much better handle on
usage of the word. What I had problems with is a 'hero' type character
portrayal that I've come across once or twice in newspaper articles. You
pinned it down for me nicely. The term is as you suggest, a bit more
involved than what I initially imagined.