Looking deeper into the fissure

In his column, Walter Nicklin almost got it — but missed.

In his attempt, he quoted and paraphrased Fareed Zakaria, “The fissure between relatively better-educated urbanites and less-educated [sic] rural populations appears to have become the new dividing line in Western politics. (People who self-identify as rural) feel ignored or looked down upon and feel deep resentment toward metropolitan elites (e.g., Rappahannock come heres!)”

It isn’t about “come heres” and “been heres,” and it has nothing to do with level of education. I would modify Nicklin’s off-target conclusion with these words:

“There is a fissure between the elitist, condescending, know-it-alls who think they should make all the decisions, and the people who actually drive the gears of this country and who justifiably feel ignored and looked down upon. This fissure creates deep resentment toward those self-identified elites.”

Demaris Miller
Washington

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3 Comments

  1. A real farmer who raises cattle and hay and veggies has may not have all the fancy lined paper degrees on his wall but he is more educated than these city people who come here and think they are over everybody. A farmer may not have been in college but in my eye he has many degrees in biology, math, science, agriculture, veterinary medicine, horticulture, accounting, business, and much more. He also knows all the trades of carpentry, electrical, plumbing, etc. You call a farmer here in the county less educated and youre just showing your own ignorance and stupidity. Oh and what that other guy here said about the vineyards he’s right because you know how dumb all these yuppies look standing around with a cup of beer or wine in their hand with that dumb grin on their face. Is that how you want people to see rappahannock county? cut down the grapes and put some beef in those wasted fields. don’t let this county go to waste please.

  2. Couldn’t have said it better myself. Fact is, so many don’t have a clue what living in a rural environment is like. Hate to sound suoerior, but I knew what I was getting into when I moved back here where I grew up. But I felt it was worth giving up a bunch of so-called conveniences and services in order to live a better, tranquil way. So many things people complain about not having are things I wanted to get away from! Strip malls, fast food joints, nightclubs,crowded apartment life. I wanted to have cows for neighbors,to walk in our dear little country villages with no worry about muggers.
    Yes, I know power outages for example may last longer out here in the country(though I endured a 4 -5 day one in 1996 from Hurricane Fran in downtown Charlottesville). But no place is perfect, not even Manhattan with all the wonderful cultural assets nearby.
    To be fair though be a rural native does not always mean correct knowledge of. the world around us. Grew up here where probably most people killed every snake they saw, no matter what kind. Sorry to say at one time one of them was me! Not something I feel proud of now.
    Dare say many of those thoughtless, rude people you encountered would be just as unpleasant to be around if you lived in the city.

  3. ‘Less educated rural population’? I was raised here, as were my father, grandfather and great-grandfather. I’m a ‘been-here-a-long-long-timer’. I do not need to be stereotyped by some invading ‘think-they-are-better-educated urbanite’ when they are actually ‘educated beyond the capacity of their intelligence’!

    I have served my time in the military, receive a pension, I have two degrees – one in mathematics and one in electrical engineering. The only thing that kept me going in the military was that one day I would come back home and own a peaceful and quiet farm. I’m your ‘rural population’ you speak of.

    When I do come back home from my military tour, most of the local people I knew had died or moved on, their land being sold for useless grapevines where I should have seen cattle and other livestock, corn, and other food to feed the people. We don’t need wineries here, ‘grapes don’t feed the people’.

    We don’t need a fancy restaurant where only the wealthy can eat. Something a bit more favorable to everyone would be more appreciated. A restaurant that serves good wholesome locally grown meat and vegetables at an affordable price would be more welcoming.

    Eldon Farms, from the north, owns much land here. They advertise on their website to be agriculture friendly, and claim ‘not to be up to anything’ in the rappnews article from April 16, 2017. They fix up and rent these older houses in the county to people who come here and think ‘they are in the country’ as one tenant told us when we had to ask him to stop shooting his firearms across one of our pastures, and then pleaded with us not to call the sheriff as he was already on probation. Our quiet mornings and evenings sitting on the porch are constantly interrupted by trucks driving around their property, 4-wheelers moving about, gunshots all day. We retrieved 3 deer last year alone which bled out on our farm due to the bad shots from these hunters, and two deer this season wasted and found dead in our pastures, adjacent to their hunt club. When the Eldon Farms manager was called, he was rude, and said what they did was their business. We don’t see a hunt club in the backyard of Little Washington, I wonder why? It’s all hidden down on the south end of the county where you think all the ‘less educated rural population lives’! They actually interrupt and destroy our agriculture atmosphere by scaring our livestock and other animals.

    We caught someone stealing rocks off of our property, from a historic marker. When we stopped them, they said they had just moved here from Fairfax Va. They claimed they thought they were ‘in the country’ and didn’t see any harm in taking a rock or two… is that one of the ‘better-educated urbanites’ you speak of?

    We saw a couple along the banks of the Hughes River tossing big rocks into the water and laughing. When I asked them what they were doing, they said, ‘trying to hit these fish’. I asked them how stupid can anyone be, as they were killing trout! I asked where they were from, and they said Maryland but they were looking at buying a home somewhere in the county. Well, we sure need a few more of those ‘educated urbanites’ moving in as our neighbors, huh?

    When the ‘urbanites’ move here, they think they are getting into the country, but what they do is begin saying how they don’t want to be so far from a big store or fancy restaurant and so they try to bring it all here. Then why leave the city in the first place and ruin a beautiful area like Rappahannock County?

    They bring with them development and stress, and that’s the only real thing we ‘local yocals’ don’t want. We just want what’s left of peace and quiet. We don’t mind sharing the land, just take all the city ideas with you when you go back home after a weekend visit.

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