The AP is announcing that President Obama may be tapping a doctor from my home state of Alabama as the next surgeon general of the United States.
The news isn’t official yet. And I will admit I don’t know much about this particular woman, and I’m sure we’ll learn more about her soon during the confirmation process. But I always like it when people from the South get a chance to show off the good side of the South– not just the bad side. I hope that Dr. Regina Benjamin lives up to her billing because there are a lot of us who would like to be proud of her achievement.
I admit it: I’m a bit of a Southern apologist. I’m fully aware of our rocky history. This region is responsible for some truly horrible episodes in our nation’s history, and I make no excuses for that. This region has also birthed some real yahoos out there. We’ve produced our share of John Edwardses and Mark Sanfords. But there are also good people doing good things in the South every single day. There are scholars, and writers, and physicians, and scientists, and educators, and engineers and all sorts of thoughful people in the South. I’d like a little recognition for that.
And oh yes, we wear shoes and use the Internet, too.