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September 13, 2004
Democrat 527 Paints Kerry As "Metro"?

As I've been reading the on-line newspapers, especially the New York Times, I've been seeing an ad campaign for something called Retro vs Metro. The ads feature a bad picture of George Bush with the label Retro, and a smiling John Kerry with the label Metro. The first impression this ad gives is that Kerry has co-opted yet another part of Howard Dean's campaign and declared himself a 'metrosexual', or at least a Democratic 527 has done that for him. Another ad laughably asks, "Smarter bombs or smarter kids?", apparently unaware that the two are not mutually exclusive.

I looked more into the website and discovered Retrovsmetro.org, a smug, self-congratulatory site that scorns religious expression unless it's superficial, and advances the most bigoted impressions of rural and suburban America as anything you're likely to read anywhere. Here's what the creators have to say about Retro America:

On the Retro side of the cultural divide are those who, in response to their conservative religious beliefs, are pro-life and support prayer in the schools, the display of Christian symbols in public facilities, and publicly funded religious social services. The Republicans who represent them in Congress vote for constitutional amendments to ban flag burning, declare the U.S. a Christian nation, allow tax-exempt religious organizations (but not other nonprofits) to engage in partisan politics, and favor limitations on the First Amendment to combat speech and symbols they perceive as pornographic or unpatriotic. Retro representatives support subsidies to oil, mining and agriculture, but they are opposed to womens rights, gay and lesbian rights, affirmative action, welfare, organized labor, and taxes of any kind.

These are God, Family, and Flag folks politically dominated by rural, conservative, white, Fundamentalist Christian populations. Retro America is not the land of co-habiting, unmarried, hetero, or same-sex couples, or of the young seeking cultural excitement in the large Metro cities.

On the other hand, here is how they describe the sweetness-and-light Metro side of America:

On the Metro side of the cultural divide are religious moderates and seculars, Democrats, and moderate Republicans who are committed to excellence in education and science, who want the arts to flourish; who are accepting of differences in ethnicity, gender, and sexual orientation; and who want a clear division between church and state. These moderates are in favor of womens, gay, and workers rights. ...

Metro America values inclusion, respects science and social discourse, and promotes policies designed to provide physical, economic and social security for all families, both the 20 percent of the old traditional families and the 80 percent of the new traditional families. If America is ever to be a true United States, it must embrace these Metro values of inclusion and respect.

Ah, yes, all of the inclusiveness obviously falls on the side of the Metros -- the same people who brought us campus speech codes, the same people who were seen screaming and assaulting Republican delegates in New York City (the very heart of Metro America!), the ones who set up false dichotomies between national security and education. Metro America is so inclusive that they feel the only way that America can be "true" will be to force everyone to think the way they do.

Maybe this is another Karl Rove effort ...

UPDATE: The Washington Post notices the silliness.

Sphere It Digg! View blog reactions
Posted by Ed Morrissey at September 13, 2004 6:23 AM

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