Racism or just Antilocution?

Not a gap tooth in the bunch, how disappointing.
Not a gap tooth in the bunch, how disappointing.

Grainne Rhuad

Last week, I attended a community event showcasing talent.  It was, at the time our household signed up for it billed as a talent show.  By the time of the showcase, it became something I was barely comfortable being a part of, maybe especially as an audience member.

The theme which was announced after others in my household were way into their practice was “Hillbilly Hootenanny.”  Doesn’t sound so bad does it?  I mean after all Hootenany is a pretty old word from the Scots meaning party or celebration or sometimes meeting (like meeting of the minds).

But, what the organizers came away with was just ugly.  Arriving there I found adults and children alike dressed up like caricatures of Hill folk.  Some wearing burlap, others with their teeth blacked out with wax and confusingly a good many looking and outright acting like the Robinsons of Duck Dynasty.  Note to dumbshits: The Robinsons live in Louisiana; there are no hills, hollers or mountains and they identify themselves as “Rednecks”.

This didn’t stop a total of 3 Duck Dynasty inspired “skits” and from event organizers announcing in public, “If you don’t know how to dress, just watch some Duck Dynasty.”

Now, how is all of this racist?  When you take a group of people no matter their ethnicity and dress up parodying them, it is belittling and does nothing to seek to understand their culture, music, history or heritage.

In fact two acts, one of them ours, failed the dress up bit.  We had a fiddler and a guitar playing traditional jig and reels.  “Where is the outfits?”

“We are fairly confident that our Scots-Irish cousins in the hills dress just like us nowadays.” was our answer.

The other act was a Piper in full regalia that really went above and beyond explaining the pipes and why they were important as well as the songs.  He was ignored during the talking bit and made fun of for his “Non Hillbilly” Regalia.  This is just sad.  Most of the people who live in the hills hail from Scotland and Ireland, they settled in remote places because they were tired and wanted to be left alone and because in many ways it was like home.

There were so many opportunities to talk about this at this event and for some reason people just didn’t get why they were wrong.  “But, But…Hee-Haw!” This was a frequent answer.

Yes, Hee-Haw, which I never watched until the internet.  But I am aware of it, of course I am. It brought bluegrass and country music to the people.  Hee-Haw is Amos and Andy for white performers.  It gave them work when Vaudeville was over, when circuses no longer mattered and when country and bluegrass was being forgotten, it did nothing for the rich culture this music came from.

Hey but that’s not all, I haven’t forgotten the rest of the races.  Last week I came across an article which was just gobsmacking.  A yoga studio, one can only assume down on its luck or full of people who didn’t qualify for hootenannys, threw a “Dress Getto Fabulous and get in Free.” night.  If that isn’t both racist and missing the point of Yoga, I don’t know what is.

Alternet reported: “The poster encouraged attendees to wear “corn rows,” “snap back caps,” or a “grill” (shiny metal worn over the teeth) and offered to provide “do-rags” and other appropriate ghetto wear free at the door. “- Yoga studio in question was in Santa Barbara.

Of course it was in Santa Barbara and since this article is about antilocution I’ll just insert some of my own here: The home of rich bored white folks.

I’m frankly embarrassed.  As a practitioner of Yoga, I was taught Yoga is for everyone.  It really shouldn’t even be for profit, one should be able to do it on their own, as a form of spiritual devotion and meditation.  I do realize that in our group oriented career driven society, people miss that piece, it’s unfortunate but true and it is very good exercise.  I am so willing to overlook Yoga classes for charge.

But, how on earth can one so completely misunderstand Yoga as to denigrate other human beings by dressing up as them to be funny?  This wasn’t a Yogic protest of Ghetto standards and marginalization it was a for-fun dress-up.  Not Cool Yoga studio and Yoga teachers.

Yoga, I found out, in America has a particularly bad habit of this, the same report went on to let us know: “There was a minor uproar two years ago when an Asian-American yoga teacher posted a You Tube video entitled “Yoga for Black People” that some people found similarly offensive, if not downright racist.   The video combined yoga slogans and hip-hop riffs and used mocking references to Black celebrities like R.J. Kelly and Oprah to suggest that yoga culture was often shallow and pretentiousness.  In one typical scenario, the producer and star of the video shouts “raise the roof” with her hands overhead and then slips into a downward dog pose, saying “raise the roof….on the floor!”   The video concludes with a brief meditation in which she substitutes “O-bammmmma” for the traditional “Om” sound.  “

It seems nobody in the Yoga community wants to address this issue.  There has been no coverage of it in mainstream Yoga journals and when people do ask about it typical answers include some reference to detachment.

The practice of detachment that Yoga teaches is completely different from ignoring wrong doing in the world around you.  We are supposed to work on detaching from our own ego, petty worries and body hungers.  This does not mean stop caring and stop speaking up about clearly bad things.

Lest you think that by staying home and not participating in classes and talent shows you are raising a fist at racism I’d like everyone to think about something that has been bothering me for some time, and we have all done it at least once.

Watching autotuned racism.

That’s right, take a crime, insert Black/Asian/any other race that white ears don’t easily understand  saving the day from the crime, stick a camera in front of them, then autotune the shit out of it  and you have comic gold right?

“Ain’t Nobody Got Time For That.” Ring a bell?  How about Antoine Jackson and His “Hide yo’ kids.”?  Think I’m kidding about Asian; I literally took 10 seconds to find this one.  But go ahead, enter any race you like, you’ll see what I mean.

It all seems simply funny at first but what happens is people begin to not take the heroism of these people seriously and that’s a shame.  Because we need people who are willing to stick their neck out for those little white girls that are a “Dead Giveaway.” We really do.

I was just told by someone looking over my shoulder, that the Reverend Al Sharpton said something to the same effect.  Sounds about right and while I don’t always agree with him I do on this. (If he did indeed say it, my fact checking monkey got fired for eating my hoarded Halloween candy)

We are never going to get past “us and them” until we start trying to understand people other than us and what makes them tick.  It isn’t having a fabulous grill and it isn’t growing beards and mumbling about moonshine.

I wonder what would happen if we all actually started celebrating the really wonderful things about people and cultures that we see as different as ours (or maybe that we spent the last few generations distancing ourselves from.)  Would appreciated people in turn be less suspicious and prejudice towards others?

It’s worth a try.

Now, I’ll play you out with something less offensive than the “Hillbilly Hootenanny Talent Show”.

18 Comments on “Racism or just Antilocution?”

  1. I am so glad you are talking about this. Evan as a white male I’ve been impacted by racism starting in my youth. Being clearly polish I had my fair share of anti locution growing up back east. Even more so as my family members chose black men as partners. Being on the receiving end of prejudice and anti locution makes one sensitive to this as an adult. When I see and hear what the dominant culture views as all in good fun I wonder if there experience would be different if they were on the receiving end. I would hope so. But I am not convinced that it would. Sadly. Way to speak up and lead by example Grainne!

  2. Grainne, I’m glad you pointed out the origins of bluegrass as that was the first thing that came to my mind when I began reading your article. I used to love going to bluegrass festivals until the “concerts for profit” people began taking over and commercializing every aspect of it. All these yuppies with bright bandanas around their necks spoiled it for me.

    Hillbillies should never be confused with rednecks. They are simply people raised in remote mountain areas with very little access to the outside world. Redneck is an attitude that can be found anywhere and involves a great deal of sexism, racial discrimination, and a narrow view on education.

    A hillbilly hoe-down or barn-raising generally involves square dancing, which is a very exacting art. Even more challenging is the role of the caller, who has to be as skillful in his articulation as an auctioneer. What a pity they did not incorporate this incredibly beautiful cultural heritage into the “hootenanny”.

    It hasn’t ceased to puzzle me why people think hillbillies are missing a lot of teeth. Okay, so they drink well water, which doesn’t contain introduced fluoride, but mountain water is highly mineralized and does contain natural fluoride. Other than the fact that there are probably not so many that go to a dentist, I’d say the average hillbilly has some very good teeth.

    The whole yoga experience has me completely baffled. What the heck? Mentally and physically, yoga has to be the best exercise around. If more people conscientiously did yoga, there would be fewer needs for psychiatrists and chiropractors. Yoga is also the basis for every martial arts exercise. Making fun of it is equivalent to making fun of football players for skipping rope.

    My perception is that the whole caricature based, commercialized presentation of culture isn’t really racism but profound ignorance; the sort of ignorance that still presents Eskimos living in igloos and rubbing noses for a kiss. With no understanding of what they see, the profit industry cashes in on cultural differences, presenting their mockery as innocent fun. I think a good movie would be a turn-around, mocking the “white like me” who so diligently try to come across as the true intellectuals, heroes and defenders of the “poor, ignorant” culturally, ethnically and racially different.

  3. You’re making a big deal out of nothing, Grainne. The real issue worth crying over, and tears of blood mind you, is the situation in Africa.

    A single African country like Sudan or Ethiopia could produce enough food to feed all of Africa, and yet millions are starving there. Africans toil and spill rivers of blood over nonsensical matters clutching western-made guns in their hands, killing their brothers and sisters in the most horrendous genocides of all time, while unknown parties reap profits that we don’t even know about. Rebel groups, funded by unknown agents, are battling one another and the governments at the same time, levelling African countries, turning the civilizations and the culture of the first men to dust.

    AIDS, a man-made weapon, is ravaging Africa. It is estimated that three fourths of the African black population will be dead by the end of the century. All this is just the tip of the iceberg. The situation in Africa is a thousand times worse than the most horrific myths of Hitler’s crimes against the Jews, and it is happening right NOW. Africans are murdering eachother while white men steal everything from them. Africans enjoy the lowest living-standards on earth, by far. And the little they earn, they trade in for American guns, so that they can kill each other.

    What you are describing isn’t racism, Grainne. What’s happening in Africa is racism. And my heart really bleeds for them. I feel such a deep anger at the fate of my African brothers that I wish I could rip the heads off those responsible.

  4. @Peter there are always tears of blood to cry over something and Africa is definitively one of those places for so many reasons.
    However, if you are say responsible for a household you would be a bad parent indeed if you sent children out to play who cannot even work thing out and play well together. This is what this particular reflection is about. America has so much to fix at home.

  5. America’s inner issues are reflections of its outer behavior. If a parent puts food on the table by selling guns to Africans, with the intention of keeping them busy killing eachother while their gold and diamonds and oil are hauled off by the shipful, his children cannot be expected to treat African-Americans as anything but second class citizens. Perhaps if America’s wealth, the food on the average American citizen’s table, didn’t come from Middle-Eastern and African plunder, Americans could learn to respect Blacks and Muslims.

    Perhaps if the original settlers had not raped, robbed and killed so many Native Americans, the Native Americans would be doing better today, right? And then there would be no need for racial equality advocates reminding people that we are all equal.

  6. Perhaps if the original settlers had not enslaved so many Africans, there would be no racism between black and white folk today. How can African-Americans be expected to respect whites when their ancestors were their hostages? How can white Americans respect people who used to wipe their ancestors’ asses after they took a dump? how can they respect people whose ancestors used to be their basement sex-slaves?

    When the first bricks are laid crooked, the whole structure will end up crooked. Wrong-doing can only result in more wrong-doing, and that’s exactly America’s problem. Every brick of the US has been laid on a foundation of evil actions against others. If America were to stop stealing and hurting other people, it would collapse. In Muslim countries people believe that if someone gets fat on food stolen from another man’s table, his stomach won’t be able to digest untainted food anymore.

    America is cursed and doomed. Nobody likes America. Nobody likes Americans. Everyone has been hurt by America. Everyone is afraid of America, the big bully with the sharp teeth and claws. Soon, Americans will have to deal with global anti-American racism.

  7. It is interesting to me that while a good portion of the article dealt with making fun of cultures black and white and everything in between as well as a good deal of mixing, the focus is still on the separation along colour lines.

    I suppose it is hard to see that antilocution occurs regardless of colour and status. That Irish, Polish, Italians,Germans, Japanese,French, Christ wept! Every ethnicity you can think of has in fact been and continues to be marginalized somewhere.

    In fact you @Peter are practicing antilocution in your statements against Americans in general. Do you truly feel that way about EVERY person who is an American citizen? And if so, why?

  8. I don’t feel any way about any thing, and yet I can empathize with pretty much how any one feels about any thing.

    I looked up antilocution, and it seems to refer to when a majority group gets together to make fun and verbally abuse a minority. So, how can one man’s personal opinions regarding a nation of people be antilocution? And I think the term is a sociological one that mainly refers to people living in the same community. Like the cool kids at any school picking on the autistic kid, or the pakistani kid, or the smart kid. The term implies the many picking on the few, the strong abusing the weak. I’m flattered that you think I’m strong enough to abuse every single American, Grainne, but please. 😛

    Now, racism. The Zoroastrian community in Iran refuses to intermarry with Muslims. Since they are a minority, their choices for life-partners are quite limited, and yet their collective consciousness has chosen a path that risks their eventual extinction in favor of keeping their genetics isolated from other Iranian people. The Iranian Jews, the Kalimis, who are all pretty much gone and living in Israel now, also practiced the same racial-genetic isolation from the general population. The European and American white people who immigrated to Israel in the past 50 years were all (generally) disgusted by the ugly brown people who were living there. They not only refused to intermix and intermarry, but they built a big wall around the brown people to kill them all in isolation. When the original European settlers went to the Americas, they felt the exact same way about the foul-smelling grotesque-looking Natives. They refused to peacefully intermarry and let their mixed-blood children rule the land. The whites, regardless of their nationality, were racist, you understand. Now, white Europeans are 90% from the same linguistic lineage, and they intermarry freely in Europe and in America. But they do not intermarry with Blacks in the same way. (Of course isolated cases occur, but they do not define the general trend.)

    The next step in racism is saying that “Ok. Well, since we’re gonna slaughter these people like animals, why not show them mercy and make them work for us as slaves? Let’s take the moral high road.” This is how the British-American slave owners probably felt. They didn’t think they were abusing black _people_. They thought they were showing kindness to an degenerate animal that didn’t even deserve to live in Africa, let alone the great land of freedom and opportunity, America.

    The Africans were no threat to the British, or the Americans. Neither were the Native Americans, whose general population was eradicated via intentional germ-warfare, after the European elite discovered their weakness to certain diseases. This same agenda is being perpetrated on Africa today, where more people are dying of viral and bacterial diseases than all the rest of the world put together.

    We are not talking about individual people here. I’m sure you are a good person Grainne, and the actions of America reflects no more upon you and your family as they do on me. I’m talking about Nations, whole populations, and the generalized collective behavior that they exhibit. America and Israel are a threat to my survival and well-being, simply because I’ve chosen to live in Iran. They are a threat to 80 million Iranian people who were born here and had no choice in the matter. Iranians never hated or distrusted Americans before the CIA-led coup de etat in the 50s that replaced the democratically elected prime minister with a cruel and military dictatorship. (Read about this in the wonderful book by Stephen Kinzer titled “All the Shah’s men”) Iranians loved Americans and trusted their friendship implicitly in those days. American culture was accepted and embraced in Iran with open arms. So, you can understand that the people were dumbfounded when the man whom they were lovingly embracing suddenly stuck a knife in their back, plunging their country into a new season of imperialist-colonialism and poverty and peasantry. The Iranians said to the Americans, “We thought you were fair and just, not greedy monsters like the British. We were so wrong.”

    Now, there’s two sides here. One side has established its nation and economy on the notion that plunder from all over the world will continue to roll in. This means that effectively, half the world’s population have to live as poor rural peasants so that the other half can live in a high-tech society. It means that Iranian people didn’t have electricity up until 30 years ago, because America took all their resources, not even leaving enough to give these poor bastards electric lighting and telephones. Considering that Iran is one of the richest countries in the world in terms of mineral resources and oil and gas, it is inconceivable that the average Iranian was an illiterate rural hick 30 years ago. It is what America did to feed her own children. Now, America needs to take the food of Middle-Eastern children in order to feed its own, because if it stopped, the United States would collapse, its industries would grind to a standstill, its people would be out of work, all because the American economy is not self-reliant and sustainable. It’s growth happened like a tumor, at the expense of all the rest of the world. And now it _needs_ more resources than there exists on earth, which is why the American economy is going downhill. There is no more resources for them to steal, you know? They finished in a few generations what should rightly have lasted all of mankind for thousands of years.

    Then there’s the other side. My side. The people on my side generally have not plundered other nations since they became god-fearing Muslims. Perhaps the Turks who live in Iran have acted out of line occassionally, but they were brutish clan-warrior people, and the rest of the world must forgive them for how they behaved in their pre-civilized days. Now, the people on my side don’t want to steal anything from anyone. They want to build a self-sustaining self-reliant economy. They want to be like Imam Hussein, on the side of the poor, helping the weak and needy. They have been helping Palestine, Lebanon, Iraq, Syria, etc. etc. Now they’re trying to help bring peace and stability to Egypt and Libya, but America will not allow it. America says that Palestine must stop existing. Lebanon should be annexed to Israel. Iraq and Syria need to be kept in a state of turmoil. And Egypt and Libya need to be completely destroyed before the next step is taken.

    My people, as opposed to _your_ people, don’t want any trouble, they just want to live their lives in peace, on their own ancestral land that their great grandfathers lived on 3,000 years ago. You see, it is inevitable that strife and conflict should exist between the two nations. But while the average American is absolutely ignorant about almost everything, the Iranian can feel the sting of making 500 dollars a month and having to pay 1000 dollars for rent and food. The Iranian remembers when 100 dollars a month was enough money to live like a king for a whole month in the capital city of Tehran. This was just 5 years ago. The average Iranian knows that he is oppressed because of America’s greed. He knows that his children have to eat low-quality food, and less of it every year, and they have to wear rags, because American children demand high quality food, clothes and merchandise.

    If America and Israel try to pull the same shit they pulled on Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Libya, etc. etc. on Iran, by god I will be armed to the teeth killing as many American soldiers as I can. I will gladly send the dead bodies of American invaders to their mothers. I will take joy in their mothers’ tears. I will die before I let my country, my neighborhood, my home fall to ruin. Am I racist against Americans? FUCK YEAH. Am I racist against Israelis? Pfft. I will murder all of their children in cold blood, with a smile on my face, before I let a single one of them set foot on Iranian soil, or I will die trying.

    None of this, however, implies that I will go around seeking to cause harm to random Americans, or that I will refuse to befriend them out of racial hate. But you understand, if they set foot in my home against my will, forcing me to leave my books and take up arms against them, they will find out how much racial hate I am capable of mustering up.

  9. It’s so simple. American children are obese. African children are starving. African children are malnourished because American children are taking their food and eating it in addition to their own. The reason Americans are doing this to Africans is because of their racist feelings of superiority toward them. You don’t slowly starve someone’s children to death if you respect them you know what I mean?

    Now, I can understand both of their plights. The African is growing up in a state of war, where records of births and deaths aren’t even being kept, where there is no literate person to keep any records, where children are given guns and have to go fight battles in order to get food and clothes and shelter, because there is no other choice; the war industry is the only industry in Africa where black people can get employment, and by extension food. The agricultural lands are constantly destroyed by warring factions, there is no work even for farmers. And there is disease, starvation and death everywhere.

    I also understand the American children’s plight, being one myself. I masturbated every day growing up, overfed on the most delicious foods known to man, i played video-games and hung out at the mall and under bridges with my friends. we smoked pot after school, and during school too sometimes, it was cool. I really wanted a BMW 3 series when I was 16. My dad only got me a brand-new Chevrolet Z24, I was so pissed at him that I never even thanked him for it. Then I went to college and it was just partying and having a good time at my dad’s expense for a few years. It rocked. Now I’ve entered the real world and I’m depressed ’cause I know that life will never be as much fun as it was in college and high school. So I just eat and fuck and drink and smoke and try to make the most of a bad situation.

    Seriously, how can anyone defend the American lifestyle?

  10. When an African rebel group takes over a town, they just take all the boys. Then they rape all the women and leave with the promise that they will come back in a few years for more boys and that the town better have something to offer them or they will burn it down and kill everyone. This happens practically all the time. So many women are infected with HIV that it’s just inconceivable.

    White arms dealers need to stop selling guns to these people. Leave them alone. Don’t interfere in their affairs. Let them live in peace. Let them raise their children.

  11. Peter, since you readily admit that while you were in the US you were strongly influenced by materialistic attitudes, it shouldn’t be too hard for you to understand how easily Americans are persuaded by popular views. Grainne was correct in pointing out how mocking culture contributes to the wide-spread proliferation of mean people. Until we erase stereotyping and ridicule of differences, we will continue to have racism, ethnic prejudice and a diminished cultural heritage.

    I agree the US needs to step back from conflicts in the Mideast and Africa. We are doing nothing but harm by being there. How the American people can put a stop to intervention is anybody’s guess as the propaganda machine is constantly looking for and finding ways to scramble people’s brains and reasoning abilities. The obesity problem is a prime example. It’s not so much the amount of food people eat, but what’s in the food that is making them fat, but under-nourished. Cow’s milk, heavy concentrates of meat filled with growth hormones, fast foods, fried foods, processed foods, corn syrup in practically everything and vitamin supplements that contain mostly starch. We are killing ourselves with diabetes and heart disease, yet the glut on products with no true nutritional value continues.

    In order to become a healthy, self-sufficient nation, we must re-educate ourselves. We must look at the problems on our home front and tackle the job of changing our life-styles and attitudes. It won’t be an overnight phenomena. It must take place one step at a time, and one of these steps is a consciousness of our moral and ethical obligation to treat each other with respect and tolerance for our differences.

  12. It is the Americans and Israelis who need to learn to respect others and learn to tolerate black and brown “inferior” people. My racism against Americans is not based on a feeling of superiority, it is based on my disgust at their lack of morals and ethics.

    If I had even the slightest bit of political power, I would call for the extermination of the American race, as a tribute to world peace. We are way beyond the psychedelic 60s of love and respect and tolerance. Today is the day of war. There is war in every country in my neighborhood. It’s too late to hope for peace and God’s grace. It’s either us or them. And I think a few billion Muslims will all back me up on this.

    Racism is only truly racism when it is the strong who are oppressing the weak. When the weak wage war to free themselves from their oppressors, racism becomes impertinent. Would you call a lamb who refuses to get slaughtered a racist because he refuses to let men have their way with him? Would you call an African who hates America a racist? Hate against America is justified and right, just as love of goodness and peace is right. Hate against Israel and the Jewish World Bank and the IMF is mandatory. Without these entities, there would be no war. Or should we all love them and enjoy it as they assrape us?

  13. I just can’t believe the level of hypocrisy coming from America. Are these Americans not the same ones who committed genocide against Native Americans? Are they not the same ones that enslaved Africans? Are they not the ones treating African-Americans as second class citizens today? Are they not the ones plundering the whole world? Are they not the ones responsible for 200 wars and armed conflicts in the past handful of years?

    And yet some among them have the nerve to tell me “don’t hate America, ’cause that’s racist.”

    Excuse me while I LMAO.

  14. We cannot quantify pain and suffering of other people. We truly are very bad at quantifying our own. We can only help alleviate it when we are presented with it. What good would one be doing to ignore the person out their front door and help someone nebulous idea across the world? Not that the idea should not be defended, but one has failed if they step over someone in pain to touch an idea. This is what I believe.

    Now, it would not be racist for an African to hate “America” the ideal and country and government. It WOULD be racist to hate an American simply because of where they were born, knowing nothing else about them as a person.

    Prejudice and racism by definition have to be different. They cross over, but it is very hard to be truly racist of “America” America really comprises two continents, North and South- The Americas. There’s a lot of races in there a lot of countries too. Different governments and cultures.

    Prejudice is unacceptable to my psyche because how can I hold a prejudgement? I do it of course as matter of being human and survival. I have to prejudge whether a wolf is full or starving. But, when working with people I take that and set it aside until I find out more.

    So, when you say you hate “America” who are you hating? Me? Karla? Leonard Pelter? PM Stephen Harper? George Ariyoshi -Gov of Hawaii? President Enrique Peña Nieto, Hashim Nzinga?-Leader of the New Black Panther party? President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner of Argentina? Which American are you hating exactly? There are so many many people to hate.

  15. Let’s see, how ’bout I start with every American (When I say America I mean the United States, not Argentina and the old Inca Empire) so, every American soldier and high ranking military official who was involved in Iraq and Afghanistan. Every politician who was involved in the wars. All levels of corporate-management who gained something from the wars. Every American involved in the arms industry. Every American involved in the higher-levels of Hollywood and the media. I hate every American involved in Wall Street. I hate every American responsible for the sham health-care, insurance, pharmaceutical companies and the FDA. I hate Rupert Murdoch, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Bush Senior, Eminem, 50 Cent, Miley Cyrus, the Backstreet boys, Angelina Jolie, Tom Cruise, and that awful actor who played Thor. All bankers, I hate them too. Let’s just say that I hate every rich and powerful person in the world who has committed terrible crimes and continues to do so for their own personal gain. For some reason, the majority of these people are citizens of the United States of America. How many greedy powerful men do you know from Mozambique and Guatemala who are oppressing the whole world, whose actions affect the lives of everyone negatively all the time?

    I hate the idea of America (err the United States of America, not Peru and Brazil) I hate that a bunch of people stole everything from the rest of the world, built a giant pyramid, and now they’re sitting safely at the top armed with their big guns, while all the rest of the world has to suffer poverty and slavery (unlike you Grainne, I firmly believe that anyone who has to work for a living is a slave) without hope of ever disarming and overthrowing the new pyramid-gods in the cloud-palaces. The level of greed, power, and money that is prevalent in America is unheard of in any other country. This isn’t about hating the mailman or the garbageman ’cause of their American citizenship. It’s about the nation of America as a whole, and what it is doing to the rest of the world.

  16. You are wrong, I agree that everyone who has to work at something they do not wish to is a slave. This would disclose people who chose to work in any given field and love it or work done for sustinence like farming, sheparding, etc. so long is it is a choice.

  17. Ok. What about the 1% who are so rich that they don’t have to offer any kind of labor to society period? In ancient Rome, the 1% were called the masters. The workers were called slaves. And the free men were all unemployed and generally occupied with military endeavours outside of Italy, or otherwise banditry and piracy within the borders of Rome. The distinguishing mark of the slave was that he received food, clothing and shelter in return for his labor.

    The average working-man today earns just enough to buy food, clothing, shelter and transportation to and from his workplace. In addition to these basic needs, the average person can also afford to have a computer, a TV, and one vacation per year. I don’t think I’m wrong Grainne. You might be one of the lucky ones who enjoys their slavery (err I mean esteemed occupation) but you are the exception and not the rule.

  18. I only mean you were wrong about my feelings when you stated “Unlike you Grainne.” I agree with the slavery bit. I have written about it here more than once. Sometimes I call it “Indentured Servitude” because it is my feeling people choose to make a trade. For example:college for serving the banks the rest of your days.

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