Perhaps "hate" is too strong a word.
Perhaps it is too strong a word because, let's admit, a great many people living within the confines of the nation's sort of sour, sort of aggressively uptight, anti-everything flyover states -- AKA Kansas, Arizona, Minnesota, Mississippi, Indiana, Louisiana, Kentucky, South Carolina, South and apparently most of North Carolina, not to mention swaths of Texas the size of Texas -- they do not actually hate you, per se.
Let's just say I'm glad I live in California.
What's more, in most red/welfare states, it's not as though intolerance floats thick in the air like smoke. I'm sure it's possible to live a very fine life indeed as a gleaming, liberal feminist in, say, Phoenix. You can cruise along just fine in rural Idaho as a gay wine-loving architect, just so long as you don't fly your freak flag too high, near any redneck bars, at night, ever.
Mr. Morford is a gentler soul than I am. Establish yourself indelibly as the most badass liberal redneck the yokels have never imagined and fly your freak flag as high as it will go. One thing redneck wingnuts do NOT want to ever tell their friends is that they have all those lumps and bumps and bruises because a liberal pussy kicked their ass.
Perhaps this, then, is the larger message to the open- hearted living in various backwards states across the land: Stay where you are. Keep undermining the panic, changing the mix, diffusing the right-wing bomb of fear. As to what make of all the anti-women, anti-gay legislation currently vomiting out of the GOP's mouth like a hysterical infant in tantrum? It's painful to be sure. It's also obnoxious, hurtful and often shockingly cruel.
But in truth, it's all nothing more than hollow, widespread panic. It's just the last, frightful gasps of a dying ideology that really won't be around in this form all that much longer. Just ask the married gay couple next door -- in any state in the union -- in about 2032.
Maybe. I hope so. I'm not sure how long it actually took the dinosaurs to die out after the meteor hit but I bet it was longer than twenty years.