Pat Robertson and Appalachian “ragamuffins”

How someone can go form the topic of “birth control” to an offhand, stereotypical comment about Appalachia is beyond me. But apparently, Pat Robertson has it figured out. While giving a supporting argument for the use of birth control, Robertson highlights the apparent ignorance of Appalachia. Link:

“That’s the big problem, especially in Appalachia. They don’t know about birth control. They just keep having babies. And you see a string of all these, you know, little ragamuffins you know, and not enough food to eat and so forth; and it’s desperate poverty.” 

Wow Pat, thanks for the nod. In addition to pronouncing “Appalachia” like some sort of outsider (Pat is from Lexington, VA which is in Appalachia), Pat is apparently misinformed about birthrates in America. According to the babycenter:

Utah had the highest birth rate, with 88 births per 1,000 women age 15 to 44. Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas, and Wyoming had more than 70 births per 1,000 women.

This sort of argument serves only to “other” Appalachia, and create a mindset that the region is an American colony, not a region of the country.

One comment

  1. Pat’s got a lot to worry about there days:

    Televangelist, multi-millionaire, and leader of the religious right, Pat Robertson is a man on a mission. During an escalating refugee crisis in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Robertson took to the airwaves of the Christian Broadcasting Network to raise money for his charity Operation Blessing International. He attracted millions of dollars in donations for relief projects in the Congo. Later, he deemed the mission a success, broadcasting footage of himself being warmly embraced by children in refugee camps.

    With Mission Congo, filmmakers David Turner and Lara Zizic conduct a deep investigation based on years of research into what Operation Blessing actually accomplished. They interview aid workers, eyewitnesses and even the pilots of Robertson’s airplanes who describe a different mission: diamonds. With the help of a brutal dictator and ex- Navy SEALS, Robertson was diverting his planes away from refugee camps to a different part of the Congo to extract precious gems. If the devil is in the details, here the details are jaw-dropping as we confront the disconnect between what Robertson promised and what others experienced.

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