An off hand comment, intended as infantile bathroom humor by a male coworker:
“Ah, man. My coat’s going to smell like a sewer. Luis is in the bathroom taking a dump, and he always stinks it up.”
I cringed a little, grossed out, but keeping my work game face on said, “Luis partied last night, maybe too much tipping..” making the universal glass tipping motion toward him.
“No,” he said straight faced. “Too much beans and salsa, you know all that Mexican food.”
I gave him that sidelong look, you know the one I mean, that long suffering look of Mothers everywhere for when their kids say really stupid shit. Not irritated so much as tired.
“Luis isn’t Mexican. He is Venezuelan.”
He grinned his goofy apologetic grin, shrugged and smiled at his own stupidity, “Venezuela, Mexico, like I would know the difference, they’re all the same to me. They all speak Spanish.”
He walked away too quickly in his lolling gate, almost bouncing like a cartoon character, for me to point out the very obvious. More on that later.
Jesus, it almost tied together my two separate essays I have on hold.
The lack of cultural and geographic understanding and why tribal pure states will no longer work. Sounds strange but the source is the same. Intentional ignorance.
Dude, they aren’t even on the same sub-continent. One is Central America, one is South America.
I bet he can tell the difference between the French and the Spanish, even though they share not only a Continent, but a border. I bet he even knows about their History and Culture to the limited degree he bothers to retain room for that kind of thing in an X-Box world.
Euro-centric history is so very Lame. Everything in the World has been White-washed, to the degree that people don’t even know they don’t know. Ancient civilizations, rich in their own traditions, languages, religions, and yes, FOODSTUFFS are bypassed in a sweep of irrelevance. Their histories for us, their existence at all, is only as bit-players in the story of White Supremacy and Colonialism.
I wanted to explain, “Well, tell an Irishman he is the same thing as a Scott, and you’ll get an earful. Celtic languages and all…”
I thought about the many Clans themselves amoung the Irish. I thought about the fact they still are half under English Colonial control, and the war of the Christian subsets. I thought about how you NEVER better equate a Scottish Douglass-with-two-esses, who became known as the the “Black Douglasses” with the ones with one S.
I get the same irritation with those who see all “Indians” as just homogenous “Indians.”
People see America as the only diverse place. Its not their fault, its the White-washed history they have been taught.
Every Nation in existence today is a melting pot of more than one tribe who has lived there.
Germany tried that pure-stating, as Israel is now, but this World cannot be pure-stated.
This makes the old sound-byte of Zionists all the more wrong. To go on a sub-tangent:
“They say we are being exclusive, but no, its like we are the only people they want to prevent having self-determination….”
Your land is made of many, many “clans” of people, among both Israelis and Arabic people.What right does any one subset of them have to alienate or harm the other Peoples there. The rest of the World compromises.
Do these people think Mexico is a land of ONE people, one ideology having self-determination? However corrupt, it has long been a country of “compromise” among the many tribes or clans for the good of the whole. The only non-compromise there is by the favoritism granted rich white Americans who exploit it, they and their companies are granted passes via struggle for a piece of our Exceptionalist pie. But we still don’t run their Countries, the United Peoples there so.
Venezuela is not Mexico. Both are DIVERSE.
As Scotland. As England. As Ireland, Poland, Russia, Chile, every country that exists in our modern times. In fact, many tribes or peoples were “broken in half” when those lines were arbitrarily drawn on some General or Statesman’s tables after a War or “Purchase” of their lands. Hence half the clusterfucks in the Bananistans.
There is no ethnic/religious group that has sole self-determination. If you believe that, your knowledge is so societally limited. The World is far too small, and populations far too big for any place to create a “pure” nation, for and by, one group of people. Not only do varying indigenous people populate every land, but the advance of travel and overpopulation has created a situation where EVERY land is a melting pot with added immigrants.
See, without studying History and Culture beyond the purview of Modern History, they cannot make that leap. ESPECIALLY Americans.
However, if you make the mistake of calling them “The Jews” or “Israelis” or even “Zionists” supporters of Zionism always cry diversity.
They complain, “People lump us together as if we were of one mind. Its not fair!!!”
Of course you are not, there are many kinds of Jews. How would you feel if one of those groups decided to exclude your group forever in Israel? If your homes were taken or razed, you left out of the political process, considered suspect, and kept in walled concentration camps?
I’m sorry, that diversity is ignored among Zionists who want a “Pure State” of “Self Determination.” If solely for the fact that it does not accept any one of the Other indigenous Tribes, that they brand universally as the “Arabs.”
The only place one mind exists is in those who accept Zionism for Zionists, that being the only test of acceptance, all other division between you are ignored in that case.
This is why Israel is becoming hated. It is truly asking to be what no other land is, for no other reason than hatred of anyone not “in” their group. They are succeeding in what we damned Darfur for.
The other kind, the KKK. militia types, will always be fringe out there, but they hate everyone. Jews, Catholics, Blacks, Hispanics, Gays… they are not the danger. No one would ever let anyone do that again to you. (or any of the others) But we are letting it happen in Palestine. By those you support.
This is why America is hated too, not only for enabling them, but for being generally so dismissive of Everyone Else’s culture. We CHOOSE to know nothing about it.
We put everyone in one box, “He’s Mexican.”
Zionist Israel puts everyone is one box too, that isn’t Jewish, “Goya and Arabs.”
And as diverse as both groups are, consider our “Americanness” or “Jewishness” to make us a sole entity, all while claiming our diversity. Makes your head want to spin doesn’t it?
We remember the difference between Sicilian and Italian, but not between Nahuatl and Totonac. We don’t care to know shit about anything but US history and Western European History. We treat them as stereotypes.
How we treat them here; how we treat them abroad, all wrong and elitist. They know even those of us who try to get it, are incapable of shedding enough cemented prejudgment to understand their long deep cultural histories. They look at us a bit condescendingly, like little brothers or sisters trying to read the Encyclopedia at 5. Cute that we try, but beyond our ken.
They take our generous tips, the “trickle down” and still would like us blighted off the planet as we the American, white elitists, would like to see our own uber-rich goned. We make sure to know their names to assuage our guilt, but still exploit the people. Our ignorance staves our guilt. They were nothing before us, after all.
Sure, we may not all be “They’re all the same to me,” but truly, none of us, me included are far from it.
We have no innate blood/bone/deep understanding of World History. Local World History.
It may be time to shut up and listen to each other.
It may be time to beg forgiveness, too.
It may be time to just stop doing what we are doing.
It may be time to learn from the cultures of man, yet eliminate the tribalism itself.
We have to be one people, man.