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Old 10-16-2016, 09:59 PM
 
4,740 posts, read 8,811,969 times
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Huntsville has some characteristics of your definition of provincial. The vast majority of people are Southerners (AL, TN, MS, GA, LA). Some people who move here think that Huntsville is "less diverse" feeling than Los Angeles, the population is ~60% white, ~30% black, ~5% Hispanic, with few Asians. So, mostly black and white. Our quality of food is generally excellent (this is the South), however being inland limits the seafood somewhat.

I agree that NASA and Army people add a lot to the area - there are plenty of engineers, physicists, and actual rocket scientists. However, I know an engineer who takes food with him when he travels to France. Kind of blows my mind but he won't eat their food.

At one point (and probably now), Huntsville had the highest air fares in the USA. Some people drive the hour and a half to Nashville or Birmingham, or even the three hours or so to Atlanta. We do have direct flights to Washington DC.

Public education in Huntsville has a checkered record. The City is under a 50 year old Desegregation Order (IMO unwarranted). Long story: Huntsville desegregated schools in the 1960s without incident. The case is from the 1970s after the City 'resegregated' (people moved around on their own) and the NAACP sued. The Feds ignored the Order until recently when the City woke the sleeping dog and requested the Order be lifted.

All students get computers (pre-K to 2nd grade get iPads, 3rd grade gets netbooks, 4th -12th grade get laptops). AP and STEM classes are available. Huntsville schools are still somewhat de facto (not de jure) segregated and student achievement seems to follow - there are some great schools and some failing schools (which may be improving - long story again). Huntsville's suburb Madison missed out on the joys of Federal intervention and has a great school system.

There are two black universities (SDA Oakwood and HBCU Alabama A&M) and the University of Alabama at Huntsville (well-regarded engineering school).

I would characterize Huntsville as very Conservative. Most elected officials at the County, State, and Federal level are Republicans. The Alabama Democratic Party is mostly black and black areas elect Democrats (mostly due to Federal Government gerrymandering). It may interest you to read about Les Phillip: immigrated from Trinidad and Tobago, served as a US Naval Aviator, ran for Congress as a Republican a few years back (first run / didn't win vs an experienced and respected politician).
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Old 10-16-2016, 11:10 PM
 
473 posts, read 360,354 times
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I'd choose Nashville over any area mentioned. It's a city that's on an upswing and it actually feels like things are happening. It's a left-leaning city in a very red state, which is frustrating for a true liberal but probably adds balance for a moderate.

The largest industry is healthcare (not country music!) so you'll meet many highly-educated people. And the airport is actually expanding as passenger volume (and demand) picks up. And the food scene, for a city its size, is amazing. Nashville punches above its weight in many categories.

It's not a big city, and doesn't feel like a big city, but it is growing fast so it has some drawbacks (namely that home prices and traffic are increasing.) It could be worth a look though.
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Old 10-17-2016, 08:16 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh
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OKC is very diverse, affordable, and conservative.
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Old 10-18-2016, 07:17 AM
 
Location: Wonderland
45,100 posts, read 36,318,714 times
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I have an interracial family and have lived in the south most of my life (as have most of my adult kids and their interracial families).

I would recommend, in no particular order, going by your career options, moderate conservatism, and family makeup:

Huntsville, AL
Columbus, GA
Morgantown, WV
Dayton, OH
Houston, TX
Fort Worth, TX
Norfolk/Newport News VA

I have a lot of respect and appreciation for OKC but honestly, I think it has some of the worst weather in the entire world. That being said, it's a very friendly city with what seems to be healthy growth.
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Old 10-18-2016, 08:45 AM
 
Location: Crooklyn, New York
28,275 posts, read 26,292,241 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Juice Malone View Post
I'm white and my wife is Jamaican. We have one 4 year old son that will start elementary school next year. We were both raised in south FL, but currently live in a suburb of the Des Moines metro and have been here for like 3 years or so. We like it a lot better than we thought we would, but would like a place that is a tad bit less provincial without moving to a large city.

I work in the insurance industry and my wife currently works for an energy company, but she holds degrees in chemistry, bio tech and micro biology so is capable of working in many roles.

We do not want to live somewhere super liberal, but it doesn't have to be as red as Wyoming. We are more moderate conservative anyway. I'd imagine cities with a large military presence would fit the bill, but would like some of CD's thoughts on the matter.

Huntsville, AL seems to stick out as the type of smaller city that would appeal to us. I've never lived in the south and I'm not really sure what life would be like for our son there though. He is still 4 or 5 years away from space camp age, so don't see us taking a vacation there anytime soon
I would think somewhere out west like New Mexico or California. Racial animus is not a driving force in Western conservatism the way it is in Southern conservatism. Alamogordo has a large military presence (as you noted) and is relatively diverse. There are some decent-sized cities in NorCal that might fit the bill but it might be harder to land a job there.
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Old 10-18-2016, 09:41 AM
 
4,740 posts, read 8,811,969 times
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Racial animus is not a driving force in Southern conservatism. The economy, jobs, limited government, individual freedom, and law and order are driving forces.
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Old 10-18-2016, 12:12 PM
 
Location: Crooklyn, New York
28,275 posts, read 26,292,241 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reactionary View Post
Racial animus is not a driving force in Southern conservatism. The economy, jobs, limited government, individual freedom, and law and order are driving forces.
Okey-dokey.
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Old 10-18-2016, 10:43 PM
 
217 posts, read 236,117 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluecarebear View Post
OKC is very diverse, affordable, and conservative.
OKC has quite a few interracial families I agree. I have family there and it's one of my favorite states. That weather though lol. They get just about everything except hurricanes.
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Old 10-19-2016, 08:43 AM
 
Location: Dallas, TX and wherever planes fly
1,560 posts, read 2,400,093 times
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2nd Raleigh, Charlotte, Huntsville, Nashville, Indianapolis, Texas Metros, and Atlanta.
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Old 10-19-2016, 08:59 AM
 
242 posts, read 162,954 times
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Houston.
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