Monday, February 26, 2007

tired of 'white is right' mentality

i sat here watching the snow fall and my mind started writing a post. after i had been ruminating for a few minutes, i scrapped the whole idea of writing it. why? you may ask- because i am tired. i was talking to my mother today about a variety of subjects- i mean hey, al gore just won an oscar and- for some reason unknown to me limbaugh has been nominated for a nobel prize. you regulars may remember my mother as my partner in crime- she is the mycroft to my sherlock- she gathers intel and i spin it into a post. and- i have been delving into american history again- which causes me all sorts of fits- so onward and upward as i ramble. anyhoo- it occurred to me that much of any progress this country has made has come in the form of technology. technological- not cultural. not that that isn't important but as i am reading about the mentality of the american public and the american politicians of the 19th century (white folks natch), it struck me that these two time periods are nearly identical in mentality.

now, in all fairness, we have made strides. all citizens who aren't felons can vote now- to my knowledge- and can work if they can find it. most people in this country can live with each other side by side- regardless of race, religion or creed- and not worry about each other. doesn't mean that we like each other but there isn't outright violence in most cases. however,

there is a resurgence of white supremacy groups here and the number of folks in the media being overtly racist, classicist, misogynistic, etc., has been growing. racism and classicism has never gone away- we have just learned to keep it below the surface. now, we are reaping the whirlwind because it is coming back out into the open- and it in fact covers everything from the federal policies on down to our local policies. we white americans are fearful and dislike or outright hate folks of other colors and religions. these people are not civilized and are backwards in their thinking or can't learn or better themselves because of race and/or religion. tired of hearing folks bitch about the fact that we have -gasp- spanish spoken in america? well, we also have korean, chinese, ukrainian, polish, pakistani, arabic, german, italian, and so on spoken here. sound like 19th century america? yeah. sounds an awful lot like 21st century america too. get over it- we are supposed to be the melting pot of the world- not the glass of milk. please.

7 comments:

Peacechick Mary said...

I would say this country was founded by white supremacists - rule Britannia and all. So, we have come a long way with still a long way to go, but it's getting better. Actually, the whole world is a melting pot.

Truth-Pain said...

I agree with you posting; almost word for word;... although I don't think people bitching about foreign languages are necessarily isolationists, xenaphobes or even racists. My Grandmother for example, use to hate going to the market in Newark, New Jersey and hear the Russians gatered there gabbing away.... and she was Italian/Jewish :)I think some (most?) people just feel uncomfortable hearing people speak in a language they cannot understand,...

Having said that, there is no denying we as a society have made it easy to progress and thrive in this country without having to learn the lingua franca. Is that a good thing?.... don't know, and personally don't care, but to deny that it is a cultural phenomena that exists as a human condition and not as a negative display is having a bit of myopia.
But as QuakerDave is fond of saying....."thats just me" :)

The Future Was Yesterday said...

You said a lot of things a lot of people need to hear, in this post.

But given the increasingly rapid move Blacks are making (separate but equal), I fear it's going to be like everything else in this F'd up world: a greater division even as we talk the talk of coming together.

Undeniable Liberal said...

It's sad, but obviously quite true that Racism is alive and well in this country.

Carol Gee said...

betmo,well-written post on a very touchy subject. I sometimes think that this awful condition is "catching" like the flu. People are more susceptible these days because of our wars in the mid-east (against people who are very different that us); because of the regular stoking of fear (by the administration's shetoric); and because of the nation's economic perception of a "shrinking pie" (so hard for ordinary people to make ends meet).
None of these initiatives make for a climate of open arms. Sad to live in such a hierarchical culture.

betmo said...

i think that there is a misconception about the whole language thing. not speaking english all of the time does not mean that these folks don't learn english. most immigrants to this country learn rudimentary english in order to stay here. this hasn't been an issue until recently. what the big deal is over spanish- i don't know. we have a southern border with a country that speaks spanish. if you look at the borders of countries in europe- most of them have signs and whatnot in at least 2 languages- usually more. not to mention that their education system produces folks who are fluent in multiple languages. perhaps we should get with the program and learn french and spanish at the very least since we have those languages on our borders. we should also study asian languages as china and india are positioned to become extremely important in our future. i think that it is the height of arrogance to expect that all of the other folks in the world speak 'american' when many of us don't speak it very well. perhaps we should make it a mission to learn our own language before we condemn others for not speaking it well.

Sarah said...

Damn polyglots, taking over our nation!

; )