DEFEND WEST VIRGINIA
DEFEND WEST VIRGINIA exists to create a more positive national image for West Virginia. We do this through education aimed at changing stereotypical perceptions. A human interest story illustrating life in our beautiful state and highlighting the success of one of our prominent citizens is an example of the type of message we promote. We also identify critical social, political, and economic issues our state faces and advocate for change. Our apparel and other logo-imprinted items are designed to show state pride and spark conversation that will help us advance our work.
If you’re lucky enough to have been born in West Virginia or to have visited the Mountain State, you’ve seen the natural beauty of our hills, streams, and forests. You’ve also met some of the kindest and most generous people you’ll ever meet. Unfortunately, this kindness and generosity has been taken advantage of over the years.
Big business has raped our natural resources, giving little back in return. People who’ve never even set foot in our incredible state have judged us from afar. They’ve called us hillbillies and inbreds. They’ve assumed we’re illiterate and narrow-minded. We’ve been the butt of their Deliverance-themed jokes.
They might have an entirely different impression if they’d ever bothered to look one of us in the eyes, shake our hands, and get to know us. But they didn’t.
It’s funny how I often have to remind these same people who call me a stupid hick that, no, I don’t live anywhere near Richmond. Clenching my teeth and restraining myself, I gently inform them that Richmond is, in fact, located in a completely different state.
Perhaps you’ve had a similar experience. Perhaps it made you mad or sad or just bewildered at the hate and ignorance in the world. Maybe it even made you feel like righting a wrong. Maybe you felt like screaming at the top of your lungs:
How can you say these horrible things? You don’t even know West Virginia! You have it all wrong!
If you ever fell in love with West Virginia, then DEFEND WEST VIRGINIA is for you.