Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Well, it's good to see that no matter how progressive and forward thinking Austin becomes, there is still a home for traditional, redneck Texas biggotry just a short distance to our north...

http://www.statesman.com/metrostate/content/metro/stories/09/14dragshow.html

Saradora's Coffeehouse, a decade-old establishment in Round Rock, received their first ever visit from the city's fire marshall after city officials received numerous complaints about the "immoral" nature of a drag show which the coffeehouse hosted on Friday night and the crowd of 150 or so people who attended it. The show contained no nudity or profane language, and Round Rock Mayor Nyle Maxwell said that the complaints that he had received primarily were concerns about the fact that the show seemed to be promoting homosexuality. Although the owner of the coffee shop, Sarah Roberts, now admits that the crowd may have exceeded the shop's occupancy limit, she states that prior events at her shop, including anniversary parties and Christian CD release parties, have drawn larger crowds without attracting the attention of the fire marshall.
Having practiced law for a number of years in Williamson County, Georgetown, and Round Rock, Steanso has long been fascinated by the way in which these communities have continued growing at an exponential rate while still trying to hang on to what they perceive to be "small town values" and "conservative morals".
And some of that stuff is fine. Small town values are great if by making such a reference you're talking about getting to know your neighbors, pitching in to help one another as a community in times of hardship, and working together to insure that your community has a high standard of living in terms of education, infrastructure, police and fire protection, and overall quality of life. The dark side of "small town values", however, includes xenophobia and intolerance, a feeling that people from the outside will bring in their own cultural or moral values, and that these will somehow taint the "small town charm" of the straight, white, conservative, protestant southerners who grew up in the area.
I've seen how these "traditional" small town values play out in court. A man who drives drunk, running the risk of killing carloads of families, gets a slap on the wrist because he's perceived as a "good ol' boy" who's just engaged in the finely-honed and long-held Texan art of drinking and driving. A guy who gets caught smoking marijuana in his own home, however, is seen as either a hippie or some other form of outsider (most likely bringing drugs into their community from Austin or some other big city), and he ends up doing time in jail as well as probation, even though his actions, in reality, were far less harmful than those of the traditional Texas drunk. I've seen cases of domestic abuse get summarily dismissed in Williamson County because the wife asks for the charges to be dropped, even though studies now show that wives consistently lie to protect abusive husbands, even when future abuse is entirely likely. Once again, dismissing these cases are the way that things have traditionally been handled within their system of "small town values", and the people in these counties seem unwilling to change their ways just because some liberal social worker tells them that their dismissals are contributing to the cycle of violence.
Well, you've already grown bigger, Round Rock, so now it's time to grow up. You're the home to Dell, one of the world's biggest computer manufacturers, as well as Samsung. Thousands upon thousands of people have made their homes in your communities because you wanted thriving industry (and a strong tax base) and invited these people in. Now you have to learn how to live together with people who might seem a little different than you, but who by and large, mean you no harm (working in the tech sector, a lot of these newcomers are pretty well educated, but I'm not sure whether that's calming or increasing the fears of the locals). Like it or not, Round Rock and Georgetown aren't really small towns anymore, and they're definitely still growing. There are going to be more and more minorities, homosexuals, hippies, and every other manner of person moving into your towns, and if you want to avoid some major growing pains, you better move tolerance to the top of your list of small town values. C'mon and join the new millenium! We're celebrating diversity over here! You'll make some new friends, and it's kind of fun once you get used to it.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

would that we were all as progressive and enlightened as steanso

The League said...

I wish we were all as progressive and enlightened as Steanso, Anonymous. Every time I hear this condescending tone, all it does is remind me that some people thrive on being small-minded jerks to other people.

What do you care about a drag show? What are you insinuating? You are enlightened more so than Stenaso? Why is Steanso wrong?

Don't just be a bigot and then run for cover. Let's hear what you have to say, anonymous.

Reed Shaw said...

Furthermore, speaking of running for cover. Why not tell us your real name instead of posting anonymously.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
The League said...

?

Steanso said...

How come when I ask for people to exercise standards of BASIC HUMAN DECENCY I get accused of being self-righteous? I'm not out here asking people to spend all of their free time helping the poor or volunteering at the children's hospital (god forbid). I would just settle for people making a little bit more of an effort not to be a**holes. How enlightened and progressive do you have to be in order to leave other people alone and not to be a biggot? We've reached a sad state of affairs if that kind of a request moves me into the self-righteous category.

CrackBass said...

Awww man...you deleted what the skinhead had to say?

Steanso said...

Gay sex and AIDS jokes. That's what got erased.

Chris Alexander said...

Oh my goodness...I can not believe you fell for my little prank.

I'm going to start calling you, Round Rock...only because you acted exactly like that silly little town up north.

You could quite possibly consider this forum to be your town or community, just like the fun ol' metropolis of Round Rock.You didn't like my adolescent posting, so you deleted it from view.You wanted to hide any warts that may blemish your "community" .I can only sum it up by saying that people, no matter how progressive they say they are, have the same instincts as everybody else in the world when confronted with rhetoric (no matter how banal) they do not like or understand.They want to extinquish it with hopes that no one else will see it. I hate calling someone a hypocrite but, well...you know the rest.


On the plus side, my prank gave you a day's worth of blogging material, so you should really thank me for providing such fodder for our online entertainment.

Thank you and good will

Steanso said...

Hey, I don't erase any posts unless they a) attack other people on some kind of personal level or b) use language that can get me in trouble with the blogger hosting system. Your lovely comments about gay sex and AIDS not only revealed much about the kind of intellectual level that you're operating on, but they can get me in trouble with my entire blog, so go post them somewhere else if you feel the need. If you can actually come up with some intellectually challenging way of defending conservative viewpoints, I'll be happy to have a discussion with you. If it's going to remain on the level of offesnive jokes that demean other people, take it somewhere else. I have yet to hear any kind of coherent argument from you that supports your views, and I'm not going to let you off the hook for making stupid comments by now trying to recharacterize them as a joke or a prank. I know that the White House gets away with rewriting history, but it doesn't fly over here.

Chris Alexander said...

why do you consider my thoughts conservative?

Did I state that homosexuals are evil?

Did I declare that poor people deserve to be poor?

Did I claim that the homosexual community deserves AIDS?

I don't think so.

I was only trying to make your blog a little bit more interesting, and from the responses I am getting it looks like I did my job.

By the way, I love how you write me off as some conservative loon out to bring your website down by rewriting history...very paranoid of you.

You didn't even rebute the point of my comment...that you are doing exactly what Round Rock did to the drag queens(I love drag queens, by the way...no joke). You are not willing to show your warts on this blog...c'mon man get deep...push this thing...you owe it to your readers....don't just dismiss wackos like me as being conservative Holy Rollers with a hard-on for Pat Robertson....don't pull lawyer schtick either, it is such transparent bullshit.

good will

Steanso said...

Yuri, if you've got so much free time and so many exciting ideas, I think a blog of your own might be in order. They don't cost nothing.
And exactly which part of my "lawyer schtick" is transparent? Please let me know so that I may modify my personality to better suit your needs....