Catherine Seipp, in an article on the National Review Online, has created one of the sillier arguments to hit the Web this week. In her first paragraph, she argues that Blue-Staters don't understand Red-Staters, but that, "small-town red staters are exposed to big-city blue-state values every time they turn on the TV."
Is she serious? Is she really trying to argue that what Hollywood is producing is an accurate reflection of blue-state values?(Well, more correctly urban values, as is clear from any look at a county-by-county map.)
I live in the San Francisco Bay Area, one of the bluest areas of the country. Kerry carried my county by more than a fifty-point margin---and that wasn't the biggest margin up here. Strangely enough, life here doesn't resemble the sort of television fare I assume she's referring to. What exactly is she talking about?
This strange notion that blue-staters are living some sort of alternate, amoral lifestyle is terribly destructive. It feeds this new tendency to speak as though the two (enormously artificial) regions are separate countries forced together by an accident of history. The only real difference between the regions is population density. About as many people voted in my county, for example, as live in Wyoming. More people voted in Los Angeles county than live in Arkansas. More people live in Los Angeles county than in the state of Virginia. "Values," though? Do folks in the South actually imagine that life in San Francisco is one long episode of Charmed, minus the witchcraft?
I can see why you'd be disturbed (and a tad jealous), but for better or worse that's not how it is.