Ashley Parker apparently drew the short straw at the New York Times and got assigned to write that hoariest of old chestnuts: a trip through the heartland of America to check the pulse of the public.
So how’s the public feeling these days? Here’s Heather Lopez, a church worker in Terre Haute, Indiana:
“Instead of being a country that’s leading from behind, I would like to see us spearhead an all-out assault on ISIS,” she said, referring to the Islamic State, the Sunni militant group that controls large portions of Iraq and Syria and has claimed responsibility for the beheadings of two American journalists. “I would like to see every one of them dead within 30 days. And after we’ve killed every member of ISIS, kill their pet goat.”
Roger that. You will be unsurprised to learn later that Ms. Lopez “said she got much of her information from Fox News.” Where else would she? We’re in the heartland, folks! And not by coincidence. Parker’s trip was deliberately designed to take her nowhere else. Because, as we all know, real people can be found only in small towns and cities in middle America.
Not that it matters. Also unsurprisingly, Parker ran into people with a wide range of opinions. It turns out that America contains lots of people and they think lots of different stuff. It’s remarkable.