Citizenship in the Nation
(no name) ((no email))
Fri, 7 Feb 1992 18:14:00 MST
I can understand you perpective on the citizenship of the Nation Merit
Badge. I beleive it comes from your cutural/historic background, which is
very different than the short history we have here in the U.S.
In Europe, you are comming together into a big community. This after many
years of nationalistic tendencies. (Not to say the U.S. is not
Nationalistic, but hear me out.) Europe is an area with many different
countries and cultures packed into an area smaller than the U.S. there has
been fighting, etc... between groups which do not trust each other for
longer than the U.S. has existed.
In the U.S. we are not much better, we have our Yankees, Texans,
Californian's, New Yorker's, etc. and We have fought amongst ourselves.
The Civil War and the Michigan/Ohio War (How many of you are aware that
Michigan and Ohio fought a war? Michigan won, Ohio got Toledo - sounds
fair to me begin from Michigan.) We had are Indian wars, our war with
Mexico, and of course our Eurpean wars which spilled over.
The big difference I guess is that we have always been one big country
(except for Texas and the land we took from Mexico). I may hate a New York
accent, but that has no impact on how I feel about the person. We have the
same horrid goverment, the same money, and we all have the freedom to move
anywhere in this country we want (as long as we can afford it). Our
international exposure is generally limited to Canadians (except for
Quebec, they are not that much different from us-at least until you learn
something about Canada) and Mexico. Mexico has a very different culture,
but most Americans are do not know are care much about it. Besides, they
have never been a threat, we had very little trouble with them in our only
war with them. Until recently when everyone started moving to L.A. and San
Diego (since WWII), very few people lived close enough to Mexico to feel
S. America is on the other side of the Caribean. Europe and Africa are on
the other side of the Alantic and Asia is on the other side of the Pacific.
After a while, we have just become the center of our own world. In Europe
when you travel any diance you end up going from one country to another.
That makes World Citizenship Important. In the U.S. you can drive 3000
miles from one ocean to the other and never leave the country.
Yes we have many different people, cultures, etc. in the U.S. But we all
tend to assimilate sooner or latter. If you do not beleive me, check out
the statistics on Hispanics in this country who do not speak Spanish! I
believe the number climbing close to 50% but I am not sure. Of those who
do speak spanish I speak it better than some.
To put in another perpective, our states tend to be our communities. When
asked, "where are you from", the answer is Arizona, Michigan, and in some
cases (bigger cities such as New York or L.A. -Americans are not know for
their geography knowledge). Even when I was in Colombia people could see
without asking that I was from the U.S. (being 6 to 12 inches taller than
most of them and having blue eyes means your a gringo!) they would ask
where are you from. They wanted to hear Michigan, Kentucky, etc... not
Our Nation, the U.S. is our mini-world if you will. Your European
community. The other difference we have here is the cultural experence.
In Europe you travel a little to experience culture. In the U.S.
(traditionaly- not a ture anymore) all you had to do was go downtown.
Detroit has more ethnic groups than there are European countries.
Besides, if it were not for the U.S. we would not have so much fun with our
silly congressman and those clowns who call themselves President and Vice
Sorry to be so long, I got carried away. But it is one of the biggest
proeblems we have in this shrinking world (and American are among the worst,
if only because of our open society we have no excuss). We just do not
know that much as a people about the rest of the world and the people of
the rest of the world. We have our own mini-world to live in. It like
those clowns talking protectionism. Any half-wit fool can see that such
actions will hurt more than help. Those others who keep saying buy
American, good luck. So many products are made with components
manufactured in many differenct countries that soon there will no longer be
a product 100% made in any one country.
P.S. sorry about any garbage, it is raining here in the deserts of Tucson
and I am getting line noise.
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City