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Old 06-24-2010, 09:22 PM
 
Location: Fort Smith, Arkansas
1,466 posts, read 3,696,254 times
Reputation: 1045

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Quote:
Originally Posted by 31st State View Post
Thanks for the heads-up - Edjarhead. I will never move to a community that does not have a Reformed Church. That is priority one when I retire - find a good church (Reformed).
What is a "Reformed Church"?

Quote:
Secondly, the last time I was traveling through that area of Arkansas we got pulled over and the cops admitted it was because of our California plates. I couldn't believe the officer admitted this to us; we were in a class A motorhome and he said he was checking for drugs. And, they were not friendly.
There are a lot of drugs transported across Arkansas on I-40. I am assuming that is what you were traveling on. These drug smugglers are not locals, but usually traveling from Cali, Texas, Florida, North Carolina, etc. The police profile, and it is effective.

 
Old 06-24-2010, 09:40 PM
 
Location: AR/OK
85 posts, read 195,111 times
Reputation: 51
Bro, have you stepped foot in Los Angeles? Did I mention the insane road map or even LAPD. LAPD makes Fort Smith PD look like angels. Wherever you go, good luck. Try not to let PTSD take over your opinions of another city and publically talk nonsense about someones home.
 
Old 06-24-2010, 09:53 PM
 
Location: Charlotte, NC (in my mind)
7,946 posts, read 14,599,851 times
Reputation: 4457
Quote:
Originally Posted by edjarhead View Post
In fact, I do not recommend getting an opinion on Fort Smith from anyone who is native to this area. Fort-Smithers simply do not realize that this place is the butthole of America. People who transplant here quickly realize what they have and done, then figure out the culture and economy make it very difficult to get out once you're here. I honestly think that is how so many people ended up here in the first place. I can't think of any other reason people stay.
Totally agree and this is one of the worst things about living in Fort Smith. You pretty much have to pack up and leave without a job if you ever want to get out. That is what I had to do. Fort Smith has an interesting reputation regionally...lets just say if you have a Fort Smith area address on your resume and you are applying in OKC, Tulsa, Dallas, KC, etc...it looks real, real bad.

As for Bible Belt....I am not sure what percentage of Fort Smith residents attend church, but I know most of those who do are very in your face judgmental about it. So while the percentage of those who attend regularly may be lower than one would expect given the town's reputation, it definitely has one of the most vocal fundamentalist Christian populations in the entire country. They will sure let you know you are going to hell if you live your life differently than what they see as a Godly way to live. This is why Fort Smith has the Bible Belt reputation it does....and the fact religious extremists run the town and stifle any economic growth opportunity that comes its way.
 
Old 06-24-2010, 09:57 PM
 
180 posts, read 326,855 times
Reputation: 275
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Foosball View Post
What is a "Reformed Church"?
Oh gosh, don't get me started on that... I've had some PARTICULARLY unpleasant dealings with so-called "reformed" churches. Yuk.
 
Old 06-24-2010, 10:01 PM
 
Location: Fort Smith Arkansas
6 posts, read 144,345 times
Reputation: 88
A Reformed church is a particular kind of Protestant church. I'm not here to persuade anyone to go to any kind of church, I'm simply pointing out that a closer look at the protestant churches in Fort Smith shows a peculiar lack of diversity for a city this size in Arkansas. I've spoken to several pastors in and out of Fort Smith and found that they agree. People use "Bible Belt" as a pejorative but I've lived and several great communities in Arkansas where the local church was healthy and positive. I visited a lot of churches in Fort Smith and honestly people around here are just rude. They're rude everywhere you go here. I am grateful for the few folks I have met who are decent people.

I don't agree with the massive emphasis the police seem to put on catching pot runners on I-40 when half the town is tweeking. I don't expect the police to be nice to me, in fact I don't expect much from anyone so trust me, for me to take the time to let the world know how much it sucks here is saying something. I learned a long time ago that the secret to happiness is low expectations. And I'm miserable here....the only reason I can see for people to defend this place is if it is their home. I understand that. I was actually born in Poplar Bluff, Missouri. Now there's another super crappy town for you. But I have memories from childhood and all that crap so there's nostalgia there for me. But I'm able to put logic before my misty-eyed memories of simpler times and be honest about how horrible it is to live in Poplar Bluff. I'll never live there again either.

Fort-Smithers really think they got something here man. And it's just kind of one of the crappiest places in the world. I understand everyone loves their mom and their childhood home and all that, but I'm telling the world it sucks because it doesn't just suck here....it sucks so bad its just unacceptable.

Last edited by edjarhead; 06-24-2010 at 10:13 PM..
 
Old 06-24-2010, 10:11 PM
 
Location: Charlotte, NC (in my mind)
7,946 posts, read 14,599,851 times
Reputation: 4457
Quote:
Originally Posted by edjarhead View Post
A Reformed church is a particular kind of Protestant church. I'm not here to persuade anyone to go to any kind of church, I'm simply pointing out that a closer look at the protestant churches in Fort Smith shows a peculiar lack of diversity for a city this size in Arkansas. I've spoken to several pastors in and out of Fort Smith and found that they agree. People use "Bible Belt" as a pejorative but I've lived and several great communities in Arkansas where the local church was healthy and positive. I visited a lot of churches in Fort Smith and honestly people around here are just rude. They're rude everywhere you go here. I am grateful for the few folks I have met who are decent people.

I don't agree with the massive emphasis the police seem to put on catching pot runners on I-40 when half the town is tweeking. I don't expect the police to be nice to me, in fact I don't expect much from anyone so trust me, for me to take the time to let the world know how much it sucks here is saying something. I learned a long time ago that the secret to happiness is low expectations. And I'm miserable here....the only reason I can see for people to defend this place is if it is their home. I understand that. I was actually born in Poplar Bluff, Missouri. Now there's another super crappy town for you. But I have memories from childhood and all that crap so there's nostalgia there for me. But I'm able to put logic before my misty-eyed memories of simpler times and be honest about how horrible it is to live in Poplar Bluff. I'll never live there again either.

Fort-Smithers really think they got something here man. And it's just kind of one of the crappiest places in the world. I understand everyone loves their mom and their childhood home and all that, but I'm telling the world it sucks because I think it's important for people to know just how much everything sucks here.
I do agree with all of this...that is why I left Fort Smith. Looking back, I experiences some of the best memories of my life in Fort Smith. That said, I don't let that nostalgia cloud the truth that Fort Smith really is a horrible place to live. While it was fun at age 17, it would be miserable at 25. I always say Fort Smith is best viewed at 70mph in a rear view mirror. There is literally nothing there. Those who try to say there is haven't been to a real urban area or even up the hill to Fayetteville, Arkansas.
 
Old 06-24-2010, 10:57 PM
 
236 posts, read 476,906 times
Reputation: 155
This was a very humorous post. Glad to see people being honest about the city or state they live in. As we all know, no place is a bed of roses. I can tell by this post Arkansas is not a good fit for you. May God bless you wherever you go!

Quote:
Originally Posted by edjarhead View Post
I want you to know just a little about me before I begin. I am a 34 year old honorably discharged US Marine originally from Cabot, Arkansas. I moved to Conway, Arkansas before enlisting in the military and lived in several cities in Arkansas and Missouri before ending up here in Fort Smith. I have a very wonderful girlfriend and I am a Christian.

I came here to go to school because the degree I am earning is not offered anywhere else in the state or even many other places in the entire region.

My expectations were positive when I decided to move to Fort Smith. I have a couple of good friends from the area who are wonderful people. I am a big Delta Blues lover and I particularly enjoy any variety of live Blues music. Fort Smith is supposedly on of the best places besides Memphis for that kind of thing. I enjoy living in the Bible Belt, relaxing outdoors, and being able to find a good job (that last part sounds like a 'duh' but just give me a minute). The Fort Smith Chamber folks would tell you that Fort Smith is the perfect place for that kind of lifestyle.

All right, so what's it really like?

THIS IS THE CRAPPIEST PLACE I'VE EVER LIVED. Iraq, Cuba and couple other 2nd and 3rd world countries are worse....so I've seen worse but I think you see what I'm getting at here.

This is NOT a Bible Belt city. People who live here think it is, but they are wrong. There are over 250,000 people in the metro area and there is a very limited VARIETY of churches compared to cities like Conway or even Cabot...towns much much smaller than Fort Smith. I am constantly hearing about how Fort Smith has so many churches, but for a city this size in the Bible Belt Fort Smith does not have that many churches at all. For those of you who are not concerned about this particular subject, I can assure you the church culture in this city will still affect you, and in my observation not in a positive way (which is very sad). I have a wonderful little church that has wonderful people, but it was very difficult for me to find. I have never had such a hard time finding a good church to attend in Arkansas, and Fort-Smithers are just plain wrong when they think this is a Bible Belt city overrun with churches. It is actually a trashy, backwards place to live. The church culture here can be fairly divided into two groups: (1) wacko snake-handling-type nut jobs (Tony Alamo had his compound just down the road for years) and (2) uppity rich snobs who only cross the tracks to warm a pew.

This is NOT a good town for live music, particularly blues. People who live here think it is, but once again they're wrong. Live music here consists of crappy cover bands and fat guys with lots of tattoos screaming at the top of their lungs, sweating all over the place. HEY, if you LOVE KARAOKE, you'll love going downtown. "Historic" downtown Fort Smith is a freaking zoo on the weekends. I came here hoping to catch some cool blues cats, but all I get is karaoke and unemployed fat guys yelling at me.

They can't build a road in Fort Smith. Looking at a street map of Fort Smith, one would probably come to the conclusion that a drunk person planned this town. People who live here will tell you that it is because this is an "Old West" town, but they are wrong (again). I've lived in several cities much older than Fort Smith and was able to figure out their system and get around. In Fort Smith, you have several important roads that have the same freaking street name as other important roads in the city. Roads end abruptly and pick up 20 blocks later, or on the other side of town in the last place you would ever imagine to find it. Roads "just change"....for example, if you go north on 69th street, somewhere along the way it just turns into 70th street. The numbered and the lettered streets are all jacked up; there is no logic and I have observed over and over that even people who were born and raised here have a difficult time finding their way around. It is impossible for me to exaggerate how messed up the road system is in Fort Smith. New Orleans, Dallas, Mobile, Little Rock, Memphis, etc. are all easier to figure out and they're all older and bigger than Fort Smith. And better and every other way, too.

When my family comes here to visit me, I take them to several intersections here where there are 6 or 7 different street lights at one intersection and you seriously have to guess which light applies to you. This is the kind of site-seeing my family gets when they visit me here. This town has the most bizarre intersections and traffic lights. Ever seen a blinking yellow left or right hand turn traffic signal??? Let me tell you this town is full of confused drivers because Fort Smith has not mastered the whole traffic light thing.....they also don't know much about turning lanes. And don't worry about having your alignment adjusted in Fort Smith because the roads are like wagon trails. People who live here are so used to it they think I'm just being incorrigible, but let me tell you the only places I've seen with worse roads than Fort Smith are a couple towns in southern Mississippi. The manholes aren't in the center of the lanes, so it's clunk-clunk-clunk down there road all day long no matter where you go. I am impressed to see that they are starting to install sidewalks in places that should have had sidewalks in 1920......okay I'll move on.

If you come here for a job you're going to starve. Period.

They don't fluoridate the water. The town floods if it rains for a few hours. Most of the neighborhoods should are like demilitarized zones. Most of the historic sites should be demolished. The river front is basically a pasture. There's nothing to do here (unless you like karaoke or methamphetamine woohoo!)

People who live here say "well drugs are bad everywhere." When they say that I kind of want to slap them. Okay, this is freaking crack-head central here folks. And it's no wonder it just gets worse and worse because the native morons think that the rest of the state is rotting from the inside out just like Fort Smith. They are wrong (as usual).

In fact, I do not recommend getting an opinion on Fort Smith from anyone who is native to this area. Fort-Smithers simply do not realize that this place is the butthole of America. People who transplant here quickly realize what they have and done, then figure out the culture and economy make it very difficult to get out once you're here. I honestly think that is how so many people ended up here in the first place. I can't think of any other reason people stay.

I have always been a big supporter of the police. I considered federal law enforcement after the military. Police men and women in general have always had my respect and consideration because I'm a veteran and I know how it can suck to have to deal with people and what it's like to be under incredible stress. That being said, BE CAREFUL WHEN YOU COME TO FORT SMITH! I have never encountered a more unprofessional, inconsistent, and downright brutal police force than what I have found in Fort Smith. The police here WILL BEAT YOU UP! They will taze you, club you, tight-cuff you for hours, and if you are ever so unfortunate to end up in the county jail, consider yourself in a life-or-death situation. They routinely lock up misdemeanors with violent felons, sexually and physically abuse prisoners, and beat prisoners. Got a teenage boy who you think might learn a lesson from a night in jail for doing something dumb a teenager might do?? Do that in Fort Smith and your kid might end up dead, raped or severely beaten. Doubt me if you want, but a suspicious number of people die in that jail every year and my personal experience with the police is frankly like something you would see in "Training Day" or "Boyz N Tha Hood." The police in the surrounding areas are no better. I am not exaggerating when I tell you that as a veteran, my "life-threatening situation" alarm goes off ANYTIME I have to deal with the Fort Smith Police. The whole department should be rolled over and the next chief should be a transplant. They are a disgrace to any uniform.

It seems like every other person I meet in Fort Smith has a severe personality disorder. I was vaguely aware of bipolar disorder, ADHD, etc. before I moved here. Well I'm fully educated now. I've never seen anything like it in my life and I'm not trying to be funny, but I have encountered an inordinate amount mentally retarded children and adults on xanax, antidepressants, and all manner of mood altering substances. Seems like every other person I meet here tells me they are bipolar.

I can't wait to leave this town. I don't plan to ever come back once I am gone. I have been blessed to make some really good friends and see some great things happen in people's lives and my own. I am thankful for God's grace and I don't want to fail to point out that good things have happened for me in Fort Smith, too. I also made good friends in Iraq. That don't mean I wanna live in Iraq.....and I ain't stayin' in Fort Smith, either
 
Old 06-24-2010, 11:08 PM
 
735 posts, read 1,052,425 times
Reputation: 344
Is Ft. Smith known for Delta blues?

Quote:
Originally Posted by edjarhead View Post
I'm just used to meeting lots of crappy, nutty losers in Fort Butthole Arkansas.
 
Old 06-25-2010, 09:24 AM
 
1,661 posts, read 4,358,167 times
Reputation: 1282
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluenoter View Post
Is Ft. Smith known for Delta blues?
Reading the post, I'm thinking not. Apparently it's known for the worst infrastructure on the face of the earth, seriously mentally sick residents, the sickest being police officers, uh.....unflouridated water...yeah, that's bad enough.

IIRC, from past posts, wasn't it also because bchris's father lived there?

If edjarhead knew that....well....I just hate to think what could happen.
 
Old 06-25-2010, 09:56 AM
 
1,703 posts, read 5,544,813 times
Reputation: 912
Just a couple of comments --

The OP wrote: I have never had such a hard time finding a good church to attend in Arkansas, and Fort-Smithers are just plain wrong when they think this is a Bible Belt city overrun with churches. It is actually a trashy, backwards place to live.

Dude, I've always considered 'Bible Belt cities' to be the ones that are trashy and backwards. But that's just me.

I would add that if there's not a Reformed Church in Ft. Smith, that's the fault of the Reformed Church denomination, not the citizens of Ft. Smith. Typically, denominations 'plant' churches in a town.

Anyway, as a child of the Delta, and as someone with blues in my bones, I've never once in my life heard of Ft. Smith as having any kind of real blues history or culture. Not once. Where did you get that idea?
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