March 22, 2009 § Leave a comment
“This was a degrading remark about our world’s most precious and unique people, coming from the most powerful position in the world,” Palin said in a statement released Friday. “These athletes overcome more challenges, discrimination and adversity than most of us ever will. By the way, these athletes can outperform many of us and we should be proud of them. I hope President Obama’s comments do not reflect how he truly feels about the special needs community.”
And the shit hit the fan. But, besides the fact that Obama made a plump joke and just got downgraded from Messiah to Belsebub, I’d like to take a minute and reflect on Palins statement here. I’ll point out the part I’m wondering about:
“our world’s most precious and unique people”
Isn’t this… well.. Isn’t this a bit like talking about puppies? “You are such a cute little puppy, the cutest and best puppy in the WORLD”. Or babies! “Such a beautiful little lovely baby, aren’t you just the cutest most precious baby in the world!”.
Yeah, what’s wrong with that you might say.. Well. IT ISN’T the cutest puppy and the best baby ever. And the people competing in the special olympics aren’t our most precious people. Every human being has an equal value as an individual, but I’d say that our most precious people probably are doctors and farmers, and scientists, maybe? Our most unique people.. Well, they do seem to live in USA all of them at least.
And think of this, if your kid draws some sort of incomprehensible doodle on a paper and claims it’s a duck, you’ll say “yeah, it’s such a good duck too! What an artist you are!” and you’ll pin it up on the fridge. You might even torture you’re friends by calling them up and tell them about the remarkable doodle duck (and your friends will hate you, and no longer be your friends. Don’t ever call me to talk about doodles your kids made, ok?), and for your kids level of skill (eye hand coordination, etcetera), it might be a remarkably good doodle duck.
But it’s still just a freaking doodle. If you take it out of context, and put it in a museum, people will walk by and say “Hey, isn’t that just a kids drawing?”. Because it’s not art.
Conclusion: Just because you are extremely good at something on your level, with your skills, with your background, it doesn’t mean that you actually are good at it. I suck at math for example. I have a very high level of understanding of logical problems, in comparision to others with my level of math ed, but that doesn’t make me good at math in general. It’s just a way of saying “oh well, it could have been worse”.
So, no, this is not about our most precious and unique asset to the human race, at all. It’s about people who are extremely skilled at what they do, in context of their background. Can please agree on it that there is an important difference here? And that differnece can be simply put like this: In one of the cases you pat people on the head like if they were babies. In the other you respect them enough to put their skills partly in context of both their background, and the real world.
Now you choose.
March 16, 2009 § 1 Comment
The crisis is showing patterns lurking in the shadows
Are we more angry with female bosses than male? It seems like it. People get more upset when a woman is a greedy bastard than when a man is it. Why?
“Sure, you can have equality, but curse you if you turn out to be swines”
Why do people clinge to the idea of the pure and innocent female with superior morals? We all know it isn’t so.
Also, the sudden upswing in old time morals, housewife-ideals, scares me. Last year I breefly dated a guy who asked me “but how will you ever be a good housewife?” because my apartment was in such a mess. I just laughed. I didn’t even understand the question properly, but answered that “hey, why do you think I went to university?”, impliying that I was going to have someone else do that for me, or a husband who cleaned the house, or something. Not until a couple of days later did I understand that he actually meant a stay at home housewife. In this day and age? Is it even an alternative? But it is, again. It’s coming back.
Obama: blame the black guy?
US has a fairly black president. Also, their economy is going poo-shaped. I see a correlation here that is quite ugly. It will be oh so convienient for the US to fall apart while being able to blame the black guy. I think it feels safer, then if they would have to blame a white man, since in heart and soul, many of the US people still consider white americans to be the real americans. Just like we in Sweden consider white people to be the real swedes, even though we have people who are non-scandies that have lived here for three generations.
Did the US need someone to blame?
A mere reading
I read a text about slow reading yesterday and wrote a shorter essay about it. I need to practice that more. To find that way into the text that makes the passive reading into active reflection. Reading is one of the most important parts of writing.
Is there any one who knows how to use the word Hibakusha/hibakusi? I need it for the text. I found a working metaphore now and finaly left the otters behind in the waters where they belong.
I’m applying for a job up in Umeå now, to see if I can spend the summer there. I’ll take a writers class, and hang out up north, write, work and play for the summer. It would be so perfect. I really do hope it works. I feel like I desperatly need to get away to keep my process going. I’m painting myself into a corner a bit right now. And honestly, there is nothing here for me anyway. It feels like I’m breaking up with my city.
January 18, 2009 § Leave a comment
I had too. I’m so sorry, but I had too.
You see, the whole transition of power in the united states from a man who was portraited as stupid to a man who has been portaited as Messiah, isn’t all good.
I like Obama a lot, and I think he can do a lot of good for US and for the international relations with for example Europe. But there is a difference between liking a politician and thinking he might have positive impact vs thinking he will save the world. He wont. He might make it a little bit better. But he wont save it, you or anyone.
My guess is like this, Obama will have power in up to 8 years, depending on if he survives or not (I hope he does, but it’s USA, they have more nutcases per square meters then my wardrobe has lonely socks). The the power will shift back to republican, the “underdog” christian rightwing part of USA will go completetly apeshit and Joels army will launch their first real war on the ungodly, Sarah Palin will push and cheer it on, and war will be upon us, all the infidels who don’t believe in 2000 kcal meals, jesus as the only saviour and the rapture, xxxxl-sized t-shirts and I don’t know, what more do they have? Anyway. I think that independent of how this goes, it will sooner or later go apeshit, and USA will be the country starting it. Most likely they will start it with a comment of “but they are a threat to us by not being like us, so now we have to defend ourself against them”.
Luckily Obama has already shaped a political role as a diplomatic man for himself, so the war rethorics of Bush at least has to be looked over before recycled. Afghanistan will probably suffer a bit from this. Iran might gain something, in other words, Iran might loose something. Remember that all the countries or leaders who lashes verbal attacks at the US, need the US. It’s the visible enemy.
I can feel the same worry about Europe. I mean, we don’t like USA, I’m so sorry, but we don’t. We like the people, but we don’t like the country ok. My own personal grudge is off course the religion, that we for some reason allow christian fundamentalists, but not muslims. I think they both should go. It scares me that someone who is convinced that the fact that science as yet can not explain everything means there is a god, is actually allowed to rule countries. May it be Sweden, Russia, Kirgiztan, Jemen, USA.
Anyhow, back on track. I worry about the fact that much about the european identity revolves about not being like the US. For example, many of our presidents and prime ministers can make coherent sentences, use multi-syllable words and some of them even try to create a system that is favorable for the poor, rather then multi national companies. Not all of them mind you. Still, they have all benefited from the aversion against the states. What will happen now? How will we define ourself?
And, most of all, how will we handle it if Obama turns out to not be all people hope for. Many people in the states seems to be in some sort of mass hysteria, and I’m not sure I’m trusting them to see what their president is actually doing.
I mean, if he would say “lets nuke north korea”, I’m pretty sure many americans would bring out the flag, wave it around and say “YEAH” and not think more about it. “Lets nuke norway!” would get the same reaction, mostly because quite a few people wouldn’t even know it was a different country.
But except for being very suspicious and a bit scared that from tomorrow the world will have it’s blind fold on for eight years until the right wing christian lobby starts wrecking the world to pieces again, I have to admit I’m exited. I reckon that those neo-conservatives wont wake up one morning and realize that they are hated by everyone and if there was a god, he would probably be highly embarrassed by them. I don’t think they’ll suddenly realize just how right wing they are, and just how bad it is. But, at least they’ll have less say for a while. The world is just a little bit safer, for now.