Let's face it: Some places have a surer reputation for weirdness than others. Novelists Carl Hiaasen and Dave Berry have an easy job in finding credible material for bizarre stories set in Florida than many other writers electing settings in other localities. This also helps television's Burn Notice; but there's a lot of bikinied eye candy to attract male viewers as well as the wry humor. Florida has it's own Fark.com tag; and who can forget the hanging chads of 2000?
Other states make a brave attempt: New York with its brashness and rudeness, California in general, Seattle with its coffee mania, and Nevada, which would be weird even without Area 51. [I suspect that the real weirdness is in Area 50; but this is some kind of government plot to hide it.]
Yes, South Carolina has South of the Border, a non-p.c. stopping point for Northern tourists on their migratory ways to Florida. And Louisiana has the Mardi Gras, with the inducement of female tourists flashing their boobs for gaudy Mardi Gras beads. It's a tame dissoluteness from their otherwise existence of oppressive rectitude.
But some places suck with dullness. Redneck jokes aside, what do people think of with Mississippi? Well, gambling casinos at Gulfport or Tunica that exact a regressive tax on the less prosperous and probability-challenged visitors. At least Alabama has the Big Naked Dude (Vulcan) in Birmingham, mooning nearby Shelby County and their second-best mall.
But poor Georgia manages to be dull. Sure, there's Hotlanta [sic], with its dismal airport and myriad Peachtree streets. And a faux Alpine village called Helen. Somehow, it's hard to work up an appetite for seeing Georgians in lederhosen or drindl.
However, in Elbert County, GA there's the Georgia_Guidestones. This 19-foot monument is composed of four slabs. Each side of a slab has these ten guidelines or principles in one of eight major languages:
1. Maintain humanity under 500,000,000 in perpetual balance with nature.
2. Guide reproduction wisely — improving fitness and diversity.
3. Unite humanity with a living new language.
4. Rule passion — faith — tradition — and all things with tempered reason.
5. Protect people and nations with fair laws and just courts.
6. Let all nations rule internally resolving external disputes in a world court.
7. Avoid petty laws and useless officials.
8. Balance personal rights with social duties.
9. Prize truth — beauty — love — seeking harmony with the infinite.
10. Be not a cancer on the earth — Leave room for nature — Leave room for nature.
This monument, or whatever it is, has been around for over 30 years. Who produced it, why it was placed in an out-of-the-way location, and numerous other questions are unanswered.
I like the one about petty laws and useless officials. But how can that be brought about? The same with many other of these guidelines; they sound great on first reading. There's a little pie in the sky present, erected by some dreamer.
God knows there have been attempts at universal languages, like Esperanto. If I learned it, could I eventually be thought to speak it like a native?
Could these Georgia Guidestones simply be a cosmic joke erected by some wealthy anonymous person to provide numerous Georgians with puzzlement? Some think already that they figured it out: it's Satanic, in some way. Well, Old Nick can work in odd ways too.
It's open to speculation regarding conspiracy theories too, such as the New World Order and the Rosicrucians. Or it could be some cosmic humbug.
But I'm inclined to see serious intent with this monument. After all, it did not include an eleventh principle:
11. How 'bout them Dawgs?
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