America

Sunday, May 08, 2005

BBC: The role of religion in the Deep South (not everyone is as crazy as we thought)

Interesting idea. Take British reporter and send him to Mississippi (the "most religious state in the US") and have him do a quasi-sociological and anthropological study of the natives of that mysterious land and report back as Justin Webb does in The role of religion in the Deep South
The state is mostly rural and poor, shacks and mobile homes nestling under the canopy of the forest, rusting pick-up trucks bouncing down dirt roads.

And churches, everywhere churches.
...
Pristine Catholic cathedrals with long, pointy towers, cool and confident looking with wide lawns and copious car parks. Baptist houses of worship, with those vaguely threatening messages on billboards outside - Jesus is coming - where are you going?
...
There are more churches per head of population in Mississippi than in any other state and, historically, you could argue, more racial prejudice, more unchristian behaviour.

I came to Mississippi assuming, in a European secular sort of way, that holy scripture, which once led Mississippi whites down the road of bigotry, was unlikely to be the state's saviour today.
Whoa. "Holy scripture led..." ??? Do the Euro seculars believe that Nazisim was "led" by holy scripture, too? How about things like slavery in Niger or the Sudan?

Eventually, and apparently much to his surprise, he finally discovers that Mississippians might be human after all.

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