Think "Arkansas" and "politics" and you're most likely to have summoned up the name of "Bill Clinton." Bill Clinton, born Billy Blythe, came from Arkansas, and for that reason among others the blue-blooded Republican elite could never stand him. As he was inaugurated, you could see the look on the faces of the Republican Party leadership: "How could this...this Arkansas hick from the wrong sort of family dare to rise to the presidency?" That's typical of the way Arkansas has been politically underestimated.
No, Arkansas is not at the center of the mental maps of the Republican Blue-Blood Elite. But that's not only all right; it might be an indication of a good thing Arkansas has got going. From the days of the Arkansas Territory in the early 19th century, Arkansas has had developed a reputation for rough-and-tumble, tell-it-like-you-mean-it politics. Jim Crow descended upon Arkansas in force after the Civil War, but only after an alliance of blacks and poor whites nearly succeeded in taking control over state government.
This historical incident serves to remind us that Arkansas has nearly always been of two minds: old, white, privileged elitist patrician and populist, bottom-up activism. There's a progressive community in Arkansas that would surprise a lot of Americans, if they knew about it. Well, we're putting together this page of progressive Arkansas resources so that the rest of America can get over being surprised, but also as a way of helping citizens of Arkansas to keep up their proud tradition by organizing and interlinking more than before.
In order for progressive Arkansas to be really well-organized, it's important to have complete information, and we're sure we're missing something here. So, if you know of any progressive candidates, information resources or organizations in Arkansas that we don't have listed here, let us know so that we can consider including them in our growing index.
If you're in the mood for action, one simple thing you can do is to visit the largest selection of progressive Arkansas bumper stickers and political buttons anywhere on the web. Select a message that suits your interest, and then start spreading the word: Arkansas progressives are done sitting down and shutting up while the Republicans run the show.
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