What Barack Can Learn From a College Freshman

Carol Platt Liebau
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Posted: Apr 16, 2008 7:18 PM
On Monday, I wrote here about the extent to which Barack's views on the people in small towns are typical among elites on the coasts.  Well,  cethis piece in the LA Times makes the point cogently (if unintendedly).  Below are the words of a college freshman who prepped at an elite L.A. girls' school, was rejected at Stanford, and "settled" for Washington University in St. Louis, instead:

When I got to campus, I was prepared to not like it, which sounds awful.  I knew that St. Louis was a big city, but Missouri carries all these negative connotations, a town full of people who don't know anything, and the Midwest, and the Bible Belt. (emphasis added)

Once she actually spent time there (ahem, Barack!), her views changed:

I realized that surprisingly enough, people in Missouri are a lot nicer than people in Southern California.  Everyone opens doors for you here and everyone's incredibly nice and friendly . . . and so much more down to earth and grounded and less competitive.

Certainly, Barack touts the value of having spent his youth overseas.  Does he understand that, similarly, there might have been some value in spending time in "small towns" before he presumed to psychoanalyze their inhabitants?

The moral of this whole story, of course, is that people are people.  Ignorance, bigotry and provincialism isn't limited to small towns . . . and neither is kindness, decency and love of country.