Welcome to Alabama Top Gear!

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When the English car show "Top Gear" decides to have a little fun with a road race through the state of Alabama, and as a side bet, each of the three participants gets to decorate the other's car with phrases designed to incite the locals, they get a dose of terrorism, American redneck style.

Top Gear's James May adds his comments:
That bit in our American Holiday Video where we were attacked by the rednecks in the Alabama petrol station: I realise now that I should have seen it coming.

We'd been warned by some American modernists - i.e. Californians - that the southerners wouldn't take kindly to any of our light mockery of the things they hold dear - Bush, heterosexuality, NASCAR, Country and Western, short hair...

But I never really believed they would take it quite that badly.

But then, earlier that day I had stopped at another petrol station and looked at the selection of T-shirts on sale to the locals. One proclaimed 'God, pick-ups and beer' with a picture of a Dodge like Hammond's on it. Another sported some legend about the right to bear arms.

And yet another depicted the Confederate flag and a picture of, er, General Stonewall Jackson. I think this may have been a vital clue to the mentality of the hicks.

Wasn't Jackson a general from the civil war? And didn't he die from complications resulting from the amputation of his arm after he was inadvertently shot by his own men?

And, more importantly, wasn't all this rather a long time ago? And what's with the confederate flag? Do they still lament the abolition of slavery or something?

It's been pointed out to me that the old flag, rather than standing for a discredited set of social and political values, is now just a fanciful graphic.

The Dukes of Hazzard, after all, had one on the roof of their car, and no one thought it was in any way distasteful. It was just the good ol' boys from the South being sentimental about their roots.

And that seemed like a fair comment. I like a sense of history as much as anyone. But then something else occured to me.

I've never met anyone in Europe wearing a swastika T-shirt.


LOL!! Well......
Posted by Kevin Nardelle on 2007-02-12 14:32:12
What did they actually expect to happen! Louisiana it would have went down OK in the Jefferson and New Orleans areas but for crying out loud Alabama!! See it just goes to show you how stupid Brits really are, they actually think that they would not really get hurt.. Welcome to the FREE COUNTRY where Rocks and Bullets fly freely! ROFL!
Still not OK
Posted by Jed Sorokin-Altmann on 2007-02-12 16:24:55
Offensive statements or not, there is no excuse for attacking anyone...
Posted by Katherine on 2007-02-12 19:08:44
Americans have started to mate with vegetables! LOL, and this is supposed to be the beacon of Western civilisation. God help us. Love your work Top Gear, exposing them for the pack of depressing morons they are.

Hillary for President!
Posted by A Brit Top Gear Fan on 2007-02-13 10:57:41
The Top Gear team are well known here for saying/doing provocative things, and the best stunts are the ones when people are dumb enough to react to them!

Friend of mine works at the BBC, said they had a security crew with them, because they were expecting trouble, but even they weren't too happy about taking on a garage full of redneck morons.
Not that provacative
Posted by Pile on 2007-02-13 13:04:45
The irony here is that what they painted on their vehicle wasn't really as provocative as it could have been. They didn't put any anti-religion or anti-christian, pro-muslim messages. When it was mentioned this was a "bible belt" area, I thought, ok, they can really incite people with something about religion, but as radical as the writings were on their vehicles, they were much more innocuous than they could have been. I mean... maligning Nascar and country music? This gives you an idea of exactly how backwoods some of these people are.

Next time they should try putting a swastika on their vehicles and count how many times people buy them a beer going from Louisiana to Mississippi.
Posted by ALAN HUTCHINS on 2009-07-11 14:13:53


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