Kidding Around: The show is on ya'll

Feb. 01, 2013 @ 05:27 AM

It seems that every time I turn on my television these days, I come across a show featuring people from the South.

Lately, we all seem to be obsessed with these so-called rednecks. We watch shows like Here Comes Honey Boo Boo and Duck Dynasty every week to get our southern fix.

I'm not saying there is anything wrong with watching these shows. I am also guilty of enjoying some southern reality television. I mean, if watching an hour long television show can make me feel better about my own life, why not? When I am feeling really low I watch 16 and Pregnant, but that is another story.

There is nothing wrong with tuning in to TLC on any given day to see Alana and June cook their own version of "sketti," complete with noodles, butter and ketchup or play "Guess whose breath." It is quite entertaining.

But I can't help but wonder why this is a trend. When did America become so interested in the lives of these so-called rednecks? And to continue, since when is a redneck something that you would like to be called? Why are we glorifying it?

Countless shows like Moonshiners, My Big Redneck Wedding, Swamp People and the latest Buckwild, have taken this stereotype and run with it. Buckwild depicts a group of young adults in West Virginia that do crazy things like fill the back of their trucks with water to make swimming pools and get into fights. So basically, it's a show all about some people I knew from high school. Another group of rednecks.

If you Google the word, you will find that a redneck is an uneducated white farm laborer.

I grew up working in a tobacco farm, my daddy is an auctioneer and goes deer hunting and I frequently use the word 'ya'll'. All of that being said, I would never refer to myself as a redneck. Yes I like big trucks, some country music and I have been muddin, but if you call me a redneck, I will correct you very quickly.

I am a southerner, not a redneck.

I know that northern folk said that Jersey Shore made them look bad. Those guidos and guidettes tore up the boardwalk and gave the people of Italy a really hard time. I loved every minute of it.

But I guess we have moved on from our northern obsession and are stuck on southerners. For now, we watch Billy Bob set his car on fire.

I think that the main reason we enjoy these shows is because they are outrageous. I mean, what normal person would set their truck on fire? I guess I do know a few that would, but they are not really normal.

All I can say is that I am southern and I am proud of it. If you want to call the people in those shows rednecks, then go right ahead. Just don't rope me in with them.

I am not an uneducated farm laborer, thank you very much.

I'm sure that eventually reality television will move on to try to find the next big phenomenon and then we will be watching a whole new group of people. But until then, I guess that we are stuck with learning how to make "sketti."

Erin Kidd can be reached at ekidd@thedigitalcourier.com. Follow her on Twitter @TDCErin.