Honestly, let's just stop apologizing for our great state

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Nebraskans have always had a bit of an inferiority complex about the flatwater state. We’re four-lane desolation to be endured on the way to the spectacular Rockies or lush croplands of Iowa and Illinois. Sure, we’re not as flat and boring as eastern Wyoming, but that state rewards hardy travelers with Yellowstone Park.

The state received millions of dollars in free publicity with its “Honestly, it’s not for everyone” campaign.

“Nebraska,” asked a concerned late night host Stephen Colbert, “are you OK?”

It’s no wonder we’re so hopeful about the sheen returning to the Nebraska Cornhuskers football team, added to success of their volleyball schoolmates to bring our young athletes to national prominence.

But many residents aren’t all that anxious for the rest of the country to find out everything we have going for us.

There are quite a few, according to a recent WalletHub analysis http://bit.ly/2F6XuTZ of factors that make it a good place to live.

Nebraska is No. 19 of the 50 states and District of Columbia when it comes to affordability (29), economy (17), education and health (13), quality of life (32) and safety (20).

We’re No. 2 behind Iowa because of our low housing costs, a major factor in our ranking.

Other data that gave us a high ranking in education and health included the quality of our public school system, high school graduation rate, share of population 25 and older with a high school diploma or higher, share of insured population, quality fo public hospital system, premature-death rate, number of people with fair or poor health, life expectancy, low-birthweight live births, share of obese adults and physically inactive adults.

Nebraska received high marks for our economy based on unemployment and underemployment, economic confidence index, share of population living in poverty, median debt per median earnings, population growth, income growth, building permit growth, wealth gap, general tax-friendliness, entrepreneurial activity, job opportunities, foreclosure rate, bankruptcy rate and food insecurity.

Long before our current self-deprecating advertising campaign, a popular T-shirt featured a downhill racer stranded in a cornfield over the words “Ski Nebraska.”

It’s that ability to laugh at ourselves, while embracing the opportunities and relationships we have here that make Nebraska such a great place to live.

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: