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My name is Jay Hansen. I was born, raised, and currently reside in Edmond, Oklahoma. A fourth generation Oklahoman on my father’s side, fifth generation on my mother’s side, I’m as Oklahoman as it gets. Despite this, an ever-growing rift has formed between me and a majority of Oklahomans, and I often feel outcast in my own home. This rift is a cultural, political, ideological, and even philosophical one.
I made In the Reddest as a way of expressing my frustration with governments, state and federal, that continue to grow increasingly right-wing, even when under Democratic control, and despite the fact that the beliefs and opinions of the people under those governments have remained generally the same on most issues. In time, I hope to expand this website to include work from other writers in similar situations – liberals that find themselves caught in an extremely conservative town or state, not to mention nation. I’m sure there’s countless others out there like me that fall into this category. For the time being, however, until this website is expanded to such a point, enjoy my article entitled The Theory of the Super Liberal. It may help lighten up your day.
My upbringing was not a particularly different one from the way my family has raised children for generations. My father owned several small businesses on and off, from funeral homes to royalty consulting, but also spent a significant time as a laborer at a General Motors plant, and a switchman for the Rock Island Railroad. My mother was a nurse, and the primary “bread winner” of our household, and both graduated from the University of Central Oklahoma where I myself went and received a bachelor’s in English Education. So right from the start, I had a strong appreciation for unionized labor, worker’s rights, the importance of education, feminism, and the new, dynamic social roles within the American family.
While we were a Christian family, we were hardly traditional. I got little religious exposure, as my father did not attend church, and my own shyness kept me distanced from the rest of the community when I did go with my mother and brother. Now, my family still considers themselves Christian, but they do not attend church at all. They’d rather make their own beliefs within the faith, and keep them their own. I, however, have taken a slightly different approach to religion. I am no longer a Christian, nor any other religion. At the same time though, I’m not an atheist. My beliefs may be classifiable within the category of non-theism, but that would indicate a lack of belief. I do have my own personal ideology, not unlike my own family, but it just so happens that I chose to expand beyond a single religion and encompass other ideologies in an attempt to bridge the gap between logical science and religion, between the infinite and the finite, and between that which we know and that which we believe. I like to call Rationalism, in the rare instances I give it a name. Hopefully I will eventually have a featured work up explaining my personal ideology in better terms.
Now though I’m simply a working-class American citizen in Oklahoma trying to get by. I graduated college in 2009, and currently work in a local animal hospital. After some inspiration from a personal idol of mine, I’ve decided that it’s time to share my opinions on a broader spectrum, with more than a few close friends. I made this website in hopes of doing just that. Ambition is not a common trait of mine, but I had to do something. For too long the extent of my political involvement consisted of signing online petitions and the rare donation to political campaigns and causes. Now though, the American dream is beginning to crumble around us, and I fear society is nearing rock bottom. This website may be but a tiny step forward, but even a journey of a thousand miles begins with but a single step.
I look forward to sharing with you all.
- Jay Hansen
(For all website-related business contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org)