Sweet Home Alabama

By Hailey Abdilla 

Put on the map by Lynyrd Skynyrd’s iconic song, “Sweet Home Alabama,” the state gets a pretty bad rep when it comes to the media. Alabama is often considered to be somewhat of an “ugly” state, with jokes and stereotypes about incest being a front runner in social media. I personally get a lot of weird looks when I tell people I go visit my cousins who live in Alabama every summer. Despite the negative connotations that many associate with the state, a lot of people fail to recognize the beauty of a state that is often overlooked. For starters, did you know that Alabama has beaches? Alabama is situated right above the Gulf of Mexico and the coast is dotted with white sand beaches, warm blue water, and adorable oceanside cottages that look right out of a fairytale. The beaches are gorgeous, but I will admit, I have been stung by one too many jellyfish when I go out to swim. Moving away from the beaches, Alabama of course has arguably the best college football and some fantastic tailgates. Also, surprisingly good seafood; my number one suggestion is Wintzel’s Oyster House in Greenville. Alabama is also incredibly rich with American history, with some incredible museums and memorials that delve into the history of civil rights and honor American legends such as Rosa Parks. You can also visit MLK’s home, which has since been turned into a museum. However, there are plenty of stereotypes about Alabama that ring true. Yes, everybody in Alabama does say y’all, and every person over the age of thirty loves iced tea, just ask my grandma. Alabama is also a deeply religious state with 86% of the adult population adhering to Christianity and more churches than you could count. However, not every church in Alabama is as conservative as most probably assume. For example, the church my grandparents belong to raised nearly $300,000 in 2020 in order to legally take down a confederate statue that was located near their church. At the end of the day, the state “where the skies are so blue” gets way too much negative attention, and I cannot wait to visit Alabama again this summer.