An Open Letter to Lewis Black

Dear Mr. Black,

How are you? I am fine.

I understand the governor of my state has upset you. I feel your pain. He upsets me, too. The difference is that while he only insults your state about jobs, he sells pieces of our state to his friends. You may be only very recently upset about Governor Perry: I have been upset about Governor Perry for quite some time, now.

However, when you take on an assault against my entire state for the actions of just one of its citizens – and a politician, at that – I am cut to the quick. You say you want to fight fire with fire. Well, that means comparing apples to apples. Since you come from the City of Apples, you should appreciate that.

Which New York politician do you have that could match Governor Perry in all his glory? Which political gasbag can we find under the rotting wood, being jeered at and spat upon by the cockroaches as unfit to be among their noble brotherhood? Who is it from The Empire State that is as grievous to behold as Texas’ Rick Perry?

As a disclaimer, I have to note that most recent New York politicians in the national eye are Democrats, which have a different sort of sleaziness and hypocrisy about them than do Republicans. When Democrats do their pandering, they speak to large crowds and offer feel-good messages. Republicans skip all that hooey and go straight for the big donors. The Democrats hit up the big donors, too, but they seem to like making more of a show about how they are well-liked by people they don’t give a shred of care about.

With that being said, has there ever been a USDA grade-A certified ocean-going class of numpty that has been governor of New York? While your current governor has seen fit to shack up with a Food Network host, I’ll agree that’s not as big of a numpty as Rick Perry. Let us consider his predecessors.

First predecessor is one Eliot Spitzer. I remember him! He’s the guy that paid $1000 per hour for prostitutes, repeatedly, right? Real winner, there, Mr. Black. That’s the kind of numpty that could go head-to-head with Rick Perry and put up a good fight. I didn’t say he’d win, but it would be close.

Then we come to George Pataki, a Republican. This guy was so awful that the New York Post said “good riddance!” the day he left office – and they were his supporters! Perry and Pataki match each other, blow for blow, and I think it’s fair to say that both of them have done far too little good for the time they have been in office. Surely, you would not want your state to be judged by the standard of George Pataki. Well, then, don’t tarnish all of Texas over just one Rick Perry.

But let’s also take a look at how Americans in general feel about states. In a Public Policy poll, 29% of Americans said they had an “unfavorable” opinion about New York. Another 32% were “not sure,” which is polling for “I don’t like you guys, but I’m too polite to say that to a poller I don’t know.” Kind of like when people measure racial attitudes. If a guy can’t come right out and say he’s got no problem with people of a different skin color then, yeah… he’s a racist. So we’ve got 61% of Americans that can’t say they love New York. Interesting. How about Texas?

Turns out, it’s the same, too. 61% couldn’t say they liked Texas, either. Even if we were to say that all Texans hate New York and love Texas and vice-versa, we’re still dealing with a pretty big Venn diagram of people that don’t live in Texas or New York that wish we would all just shut up.

Only 27% of Americans admitted to liking California. 44% of Americans came right out and said they hated California – no politeness there. California hate is serious business. This means the dislike you or I might have for California is what brings the nation together. Say what you will about Texas – and I will say what I will about New York, but we can all agree that California can tumble into the sea so that we’d never have to hear someone choking on LA pollution go on about how wonderful the climate is there. California’s so bad, even New Jersey was more popular. Not surprisingly, New Jersey came in at #3 on the most hated list. Illinois was second to California’s first place as “most hated state.”

And it’s not some goofy governor of California that tarnishes their name. It’s not even most of California. There are millions of good, hardy, worthy souls that live in California that are saddled with being attached geographically to the pits of Los Angeles. These guys want to secede from their smarmy neighbors down south – a sentiment many people in Texas can understand – and I don’t blame them.

In fact, if we break things down by cities, we find that Detroit is the most hated city in the USA. It’s gone bankrupt, though, so it’s no longer officially a city. It is now a very large lawsuit. That leaves Los Angeles as the most hated city in the USA, with Oakland hot on its heels. Interestingly enough, Dallas (my home town) and New York City are about equally hated by Americans, with New Orleans, Houston, Salt Lake City, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Las Vegas, Chicago, Cleveland, Washington, D.C., and Miami between us and Oakland. Hey, Mr. Black! Both our cities beat Cleveland in popularity! That’s pretty cool! Heck, we both beat Houston. That’s something we can all be proud of.

But getting back to the idea of lighting a candle instead of cursing the darkness, why should we come to verbal blows over the words of a doddering sack of uselessness that is Rick Perry? Let us unite, along with millions of overwhelming millions of Americans, and direct our venom towards a truly deserving target: LOS ANGELES.


Dean Webb

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