The South. The firing of Tom Ross from his position as President of the UNC System has riled some folks, and it’s almost certain that it was done because Ross had ties to a liberal […]
The South. Thanks to rulings from the U.S. Supreme Court, the death penalty is being rolled back considerably across the country, according to Matt Ford at The Atlantic. Nowhere is this more evident than Texas, […]
The South Lawn now has a Twitter page! Check us out at @TheSouthLawn! And, as always, we can be found on our Facebook page. The South. The Advocate features a post from Sarah Young (who […]
Ever heard of the Mississippi Freedom Labor Union? You could be forgiven for answering in the negative.
Ever heard of J.P. Mooney and his organizing exploits in Avondale, Alabama? Nope?
Did you know that the largest political rally ever held in Alabama was put on by the Communist Party during the Depression? Nah?
The South has earned its reputation as the region most hostile to leftism and union organizing in the United States. After all, Gov. Nikki Haley, who is cruising towards re-election in South Carolina, declared that any auto companies that had unionized workforces should refrain from relocating in South Carolina. In Tennessee, state legislators made plain their opposition to the United Auto Workers gaining a foothold in Chattanooga by stating that they would revoke any tax incentives that Volkswagen received in the event of a yes vote. Aside from those anecdotal examples, the South is home to some of the lowest unionization rates in the country — North Carolina’s union density, at only three percent of workers organized, is the lowest in the country. Arkansas is not far behind at 3.5 percent, nor is Mississippi and South Carolina at 3.7 percent. One does not think “citadel of unionism” when they think of Alabama, but at 10.7 percent, they far outpace any other state in the region for union density.
But there was a time when radical politics and organizing found its home in the rural South.
The South. Left In Alabama points out the not-so-hilarious irony in anti-choice protesters in Huntsville claiming that the abortion clinic there should be closed because it is a “disruption” to the community. Hmm. Wonder why […]
….and it is plain to see why the Glorious Workers Revolution ain’t exactly around the corner: They endorsed Parker Griffith, the Democratic nominee for Governor. This would be the same Parker Griffith that scored no […]
I have been busy with conference papers and such, which is why you have not seen a Morning Links for a few days. But I am back, and so are the links. Also…. Just a […]
The South. Kartik Krishnayer at The Florida Squeeze writes about the battle unfurling in the Democratic gubernatorial primary between supporters of former State Sen. Nan Rich (D-Broward County) and former Gov. Charlie Crist. It is a […]
This will be a new feature at The South Lawn, where we give you links and news to get informed. It is a big world out there; know what’s happening in it with The South […]
When one thinks of Alabama, what comes to mind first? Is it the Civil Rights Movement, which made the state ground zero for its organizing efforts? Is it that movement’s most recognizable leader, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.? Is it The University of Alabama or Auburn, which holds a combined 17 national championships in Division I-A football? Is it the steel mills that once served as the backbone of the state’s industrial power, or the space and rocket research that we are known for now? Maybe it is the musical tradition of this state, with natives like Lionel Richie, Percy Sledge, and Hank Williams, Sr.?
Nah. If you are a liberal or some other sort of left-leaning individual, Alabama is probably known first and foremost as one of the most conservative states in the Union. After electing Republican governors for most of the previous two decades, Alabamans helped House Minority Leader Mike Hubbard (R-Auburn), along with Senate counterpart Del Marsh (R-Anniston), storm the statehouse in 2010. That election gave the Republicans near total control of state government, with a supermajority in both houses and nearly all the statewide constitutional offices. In 2012, the defeat of former Lieutenant Governor and then-President of the Public Service Commission Lucy Baxley meant that there were no longer any Democrats holding statewide office in Alabama. And while there has not been any polling on the gubernatorial race here, it is safe to say that Gov. Robert Bentley (R) has this pretty well locked up. He will likely be assisted by the fact that, for the first time in Alabama history, there will be no Democratic nominee for the U.S. Senate. That’s right: Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III, who became one of only two nominees for the federal bench since the Depression to be blocked by the Senate Judiciary Committee in 1986, will sail into his fourth term without even so much as a campaign.
The situation is pretty damn ugly for Alabamans on the Left. But news came through today that put smiles on many a Democrat’s face today: Birmingham is one of the six finalists to host the Democratic National Convention in 2016. This would seem to be great news. As the mayor’s chief of staff put it, “You have to look at Denver pre and post-convention, Charlotte, pre and post-convention, and then you’ll get a sense of what it means to a city in terms of economic impact and pride to those who live, work and play in those cities. And then there’s the impact that you can’t measure. It has both short-term and long-term effect.”
Who could pass up an opportunity to go after something like that? Positive economic benefits in the short- and long-term! A shot in the arm to Democrats across the Yellowhammer State! A commitment to make a play for the South!
This sounds fantastic! And yet here I am, proceeding to write about why Birmingham would be, in the words of Alabama native and never-was candidate for governor Charles Barkley, a TURRRRRRIBLE decision to host the DNC in 2016.