For years I’ve been telling people I’m a gun-totin’ redneck. They always believe the gun-totin’ part, but sometimes balk at the redneck label. I’m not exactly sure why; maybe because I don’t fit the Jeff Foxworthy stereotype. After all, I can read and write, feed myself, and speak in more than one syllable without stuttering. Heck, I even have a college degree, and like I always say, “Ya give a redneck a college education ‘n yer just askin’ fer trouble.”
So here I am, comfortable in my redneck roots, able to dine with kings and vagabonds with equal ease and grace. And that’s never more apparent than during the holiday season when I go home to visit my kinfolk. I have five brothers and sisters and we always get together for the major holidays. Much of our celebrating is pretty average, and would fit in at any conservative, Christian home in America. But let’s face it; some of it’s not so normal.
Case in point: A few years back I was at my sister’s house in the country. (All of us live in the country. We just don’t fit in with city folk – way too many cops and restraining orders in the city.) I don’t recall whether it was Thanksgiving or Christmas, just that it was deer season, which is a major holiday for all rednecks. The house was packed as usual. The men were talking guns, bad-mouthing liberals and taking their best guess on when society would collapse. The women were talking about the men, looking through the sale flyers in the local newspaper and comparing tattoos. The kids were busy testing out their muscles, trying to mix up gun powder and working out the pecking order. It was a pretty good day.
The full version of this column is now only available in Doug Giles’ book, “Sandy Hook Massacre: When Seconds Count, The Police Are Minutes Away”.