In comparision with my home commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Maryland has been a big improvement in living conditions, all the more so now that Pennsylvania has become Pennsyltucky. Really, I don't why my mom continues to live there, other than the fact that she has a lot friends there. She's much better suited to living in Baltimore and its environs.
But even Pennsyltucky has nothing on Mississippi and Alabama, when it comes to right wing craziness. A poll of likely GOP voters last week, with a sampling size of more than 1200, found that 21% of those voters in Alabama and 29% of those voters in Mississippi believe that laws against interracial marriage should still be in place.
Let's be clear. Forty-five years after Loving v Virginia was decided, there is still a substantial number of people in Alabama and Mississippi who believe that interracial marriage is not only a bad thing, but should be legally forbidden.
Ostensibly these voters identify with a party that is in favor of less government intervention in people's lives, but like abortion, what they really mean is less government in the form of taxes they pay. Not that they want any less government services for themselves. Alabama and Mississippi are tops among the recipients of federal largesse, after all. Like most "red" states, they receive far more back from the federal government than they pay. It's "blue" states like Maryland that keep Alabama and Mississippi from being total economic failures.
But back to the topic at hand. If these paragons of liberty had their way, my marriage would be invalid. Not surprisingly, I'm against that. And even though they're far too small in numbers to pass such a law in their own states, and the Supreme Court's Loving decision declared all such laws unconstitutional, it doesn't say much for the quality of life in either state that such a level of ignorance still exists. It's the kind of thing that keeps talented, intelligent people from going to live in such places, and sends those who were born there off to more open places. That kind of thing will keep Alabama and Mississippi forever as backwaters, dependent on the federal government for survival.
And that doesn't even get into the persecution of immigrants, which is a topic for another day.