That’s why they call it that, Ben

Ben Shapiro, like Jonah Goldberg (Alaska) and John Tierney (Mars), has gone out of town this week and wants to tell you about his adventures.

I’m a city boy, born and bred. I’ve lived in Los Angeles and Cambridge, Mass. Even though my parents are native Midwesterners (Chicago), the closest I’ve ever come to country living is vacationing in Wisconsin. So when I was invited by the people at Supertalk 930 WKY in Oklahoma City to guest host on one of their afternoon radio programs, I was very excited.

He discovered that whereas on the one hand,

Looking down on country dwellers gives lots of city folk a sense of superiority, secure in their knowledge that they are more tolerant, broad minded and intelligent than the yokels in the boonies. […]

It’s actually the case that,

People in the country aren’t ignoramuses; they aren’t hicks; they aren’t boobs. Speaking with a drawl doesn’t connote sloth; fearing God isn’t a vice; morality and kindness aren’t mutually exclusive..

Oklahoma City, capital of the state of Oklahoma, metro area population: 1.3 million.

They could at least have arranged a heavily-escorted field trip for Ben out of the Green Zone and onto Route 66, the fabled ‘highway of death’ that leads northeast toward Tulsa.


Comments: 33


Sweet Lordy-Gordy, what a freakin’ moron. (How many people in Oklahoma speak with a DRAWL, btw?)


The OC (as I like to call it) is also the 31st largest city by population within city limits in the US.


Well, Ben has noow truly been countrified. Excellent, Gavin.


Well he does have country blood in him you know, from his midwestern parents from the boonies of Chicago.


What’s real funny about that is that you know he didn’t have to take the trip to write that drivel. It’s his way of thinking about things already.


People in the country aren’t ignoramuses; they aren’t hicks; ……… morality and kindness aren’t mutually exclusive..

Amazing what even Ben can notice when he isn’t completely surrounded by conservatives.


Well, now that he’s a country boy, when is he bringing the ‘Virginity Tour’ to Mississippi? I know some places down here where he can test his ‘people in the country aren’t hicks’ theory for real.

So he wastes pen, ink, and time proving that when it comes to weighing character, you can’t do it by geographic location? Big whoop. I suppose the real value of the essay is that it (unintentionally) reminds the reader that absolutists are wrong, no matter what opinion they hold – absolutely.

What do you think Marie Jon’ would look like in Daisy Dukes?


Maybe someday he’ll come to notice that “immorality,” particularly sexual “immorality” (for Ben, anything other than missionary-style intercourse with your eyes closed and the lights out, performed within the boundaries of a one-man-one-woman marriage, and definitely NO PORN), and kindness aren’t mutually exclusive either. Maybe someday he’ll realize that formulaic reductions of the world and the people in it are almost never borne out by reality. Maybe not, though.


Neeee-Hawwww!!! Giddyup, li’l doggies! Yip! Yip! Yip!


“People in the country aren’t ignoramuses; they aren’t hicks; ……… morality and kindness aren’t mutually exclusive..

Amazing what even Ben can notice when he isn’t completely surrounded by conservatives.

Posted by mdhatter”

mdhatter, the thing is that Ben doesn’t actually believe anything he said there. He actually does think that people in the country are bumpkins.

wha?- I’d like to see that. Do you think she would follow the fashion style where her pee-poo thong would be showing a little bit?


I wonder if there is any chance that Ben will be staying at the Habana Inn while he’s in town?


I thought WE were the elitists?

What a tool. He goes to flyover country and thinks he’s unlocked the secrets of the noble Midwestern country folk?

This is what bugs me the most about Ben- he is my age, but he’s naive and lame enough to believe that everything he learns is news to the entire fucking planet. Dude, I went to school in fucking IOWA with kids who grew up in farm debt up to their eyeballs in towns of 24 where their nearest neighbors were 50 miles away. Smart kids, all of them- and many of them liberals. So when you actually go eat lunch at a Cedar Rapids Union Hall or visit a farm Co Op in Goose Lake, Iowa, get back to me about this great epiphany you’ve had about the great American rural experience.


Hey Vespa, did you go to Grinnell? My sister graduated there a couple years ago.


Bah, everyone’s said everything good already…*fume*. I’m left only with calling the agressive virgin an obnoxious little scold. Hardly original.


And what’s the deal with the “country” only being in the midwest? Some of the biggest country people I know are from NY and California. If he really wants to meet some “country” folks, send him on over to NC. I’ll show him around.


Fuck man, I lived in the country in NJ. Half the state is little towns surrounded by farms, with huge stretches of wilderness.

John McPhee’s Pine Barrens came out in ’64(?), and it hasn’t changed there much since then, except for development nibbling at the edges.


Cedar Rapids? Home of the Kernels! I caught a game there on the way from Chicago to Des Moines last year. But then again, I’m a huge Angels fan, so I’m the type that would actually take a detour to Cedar Rapids to watch minor league baseball.

I thought they were all hicks and bumpkins, though.


Oh, and I should mention that Cedar Rapids is home to the Angels low A affiliate.


Yosef –

She would have to; or maybe no undies at all? Sounds painful, but the Conservative c-toe would be well worth it.

Uh oh. Have I overstepped the S,N bounds again? Never can tell exactly where they are…


wha?, Yosef….. Thanks, thanks a lot! [shudder] I’ll never get over that vision.

Uh-oh. I think I’m gonna…be….sick…..yep.



Hey Vespa, did you go to Grinnell? My sister graduated there a couple years ago.

Posted by Gavin M. at August 4, 2005 06:23 PM

Nope, Coe. Part of the “Iowa League” though, as they call it.

And yes, home of the Kernels. They’re not too bad, but like all of CR’s athletic events (like Rough Riders Hockey) it is usually just a series of fights with a game going on behind it.

CR is Des Moine’s forsaken step-sibling as far as Iowa cities go. But they do have a large and vocal gay population, a large multiracial population (you see a lot of interracial couples and mixed-race kids) and the city is home to America’s oldest mosque.

Also the only city other than Paris to have its municipal buildings on an island.


Uh oh. Have I overstepped the S,N bounds again? Never can tell exactly where they are…

We don’t know where we are either. Seems like some kind of coffin-shaped… Aah! Help help! Dark in here, air running out!


You don’t have to go far from Boston to find country folk, Benny. As Gavin said, there is lots of country in NJ, the most densely populated state (and there are even hill people 30 miles from NYC). I went to UConn, which is a land-grant college with an agricultural school and a working dairy (some kick-ass ice cream). And as is obvious from the freakin’ NAME of the place, OKC is, in fact, a city.

Tell me again how this asshole got into Harvard Law and I didn’t?


(and there are even hill people 30 miles from NYC)

The Ramapough, yeah. Ever been through that area?


…Say, now there’s trouble. Look who’s here (via sitemeter):

Domain Name:


I’ve been through the area (I grew up in Morris County), but I didn’t really know about the people there until recently, when I spoke to someone who’d grown up with them and whose family was friendly with a number of them. The stuff you don’t know about your own state.


Oklahoma is OK (an old slogan from their license plates)
My son is constantly amazed by stories that we had to drive 50 miles one way for real pizza (not that Kraft in a box crap) when I was growing up. Our town in Texas near the OK border had a book club and a great little library. The school was great even before W’s TAAS tests. It was conservative in some ways, but progressive in others. One of the streets is named after an Apollo astronaut who was born there.
We’re shore glad that there Virgin Ben don’t think we’re no ignorant hicks. But ah do have some nice boobs!


‘Slong as they ain’t ignorant boobs.

Y’know what they say about those.


I know this has been said, but the boy may need to look up “city” and “country” and refresh his memory on their meanings.


“‘Slong as they ain’t ignorant boobs.

Y’know what they say about those.”

That they grow up and go to Harvard then call a large city the country?


Pizza was laways pretty good in Iowa, being that it had some proximity to Chicago. But Mexican was really scarce, and when you did find it, it was barely Taco Bell quality. Horrible.


For Virgin Ben, OKC is ‘country’, but, y’know, Vermont and most of Mass. and Conn. are… well, urban dens of iniquity.


Oklahoma City is rural only if Indianapolis is. Or Providence. Or St. Louis or Oakland or Buffalo or Denver.

Jesus, what a twit! Let’s hear it for Harvard Law, leddiesngennlemen.


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