"The South is a big Indian reservation populated by ex-Confederates who are bred like cattle to die in Yankee wars. In Alabama there is no circus to run off to, so we join the Marines.
History is a Frankenstein's monster puppet whose strings are manipulated by the White House. Indians are murderous red devils who spitefully built their villages on top of gold deposits and in the paths of railroads and were unwholesomely partial to captive white women. Confederate soldiers are un-wholesomely partial to black women and had nothing better to do than whip Uncle Tom to death and sell black babies down the river. The Russians, who have never fired so much as a pea-shooter at an American soldier, and who have never taken a cupful of American soil, and who lost twenty-five million people saving the world from Adolf Hitler, are an Evil Empire spawned by Satan, and are our worst enemies on the planet. Because of our history, we drop bombs bigger than Volkswagens onto barefoot peasants twelve thousand miles from home and call it self-defense.
Black John Wayne saw it all: you can stay here and live with us in our constructed phantom paradise if you promise to pay lip service to the lies we live by. If you salute every civil service clerk who claims to be Napoleon, you may play in our asylum.
In America we lie to ourselves about everything and we believe ourselves every time.
Looking through the smoked glass of the bus window is like watching a movie. I see an abandoned black tarpaper shack with broken windows like open mouths. The inevitable stripped and rusting car bodies sit in the weedy front yard next to the inevitable collapsing tool shed.
I see scrub pasture being grazed by a bony red swayback mule.
Nothing but a few metal historical plaques remain to show that the Greyhound bus is rolling along a black strip of asphalt laid down over the graves of a defeated race of people who lived in a stillborn nation, rolling through a haunted region, over buried battles. It's Viet Nam, Alabama.
The South was the American Empire's first subjugated nation. We are a defeated people. Our conquerors have cured us of our quaint customs, quilting parties, barn raisings and hog killings, and have bombed us with revisionist history books and Sears catalogs and have made us over into a homogenized replica of the North.
The only visible relics of our conquered nation are crumbling brick walls and weed-grown fieldstone foundations and fluted white Doric columns being swallowed by swamp water. Crumbling earthworks, trenchlines and gun emplacements, are silent now in the shades of forests of virgin timber, all garrisoned until the end of time by ragged, barefoot Confederate grunts, sweet old ghosts wailing to be understood.
But the Confederate Dream lives on. The Confederate Dream, a desperate and heroic attempt to preserve from federal tyrants the liberty bequeathed to us by Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin. Stubborn sinews of the Confederate Dream live on, deep in our genes, a dream recorded silently and permanently by the metal in this soil."
Words from one of the greatest authors you've never heard of: Gustav Hasford