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Old 10-07-2001, 02:48 AM   #16
War Child
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Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Seattle
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Sigh. We're caught up in a rhetorical war here. My fundamental point was that Roy's essay focused on American wrongdoing for the most part to the exclusion of terrorist wrongdoing. My second point was that to the tiny extent that she did acknowledge terrorist wrongdoing she went out of her way to explain that the root cause of it was primarily American wrongdoing. Her language was more colorful, inflamatory and condemnatory when discussing America and less so when discussing terrorism.
We can quibble about individual quotes but you can't deny the basic precepts of my response.
Fundamentally, you can agree with the gist of Roy's essay but you can't deny that she has a considerable list of grievances with the United States. You also can't deny that she seems considerably less concerned (if she is concerned AT ALL) with the acts of terrorism that were committed on 9/11.
Perhaps I am wrong. Would one of you care to direct me to an essay of hers condemning terrorism?

In the past I've been accused of being overcritical towards the U.S. on innumerable occasions because I disagree with American foreign policy in a number of areas. I'm instinctively put off by gratuitous displays of patriotism, ignorance and braggadocio from my fellow Americans. I tend to be more patient and understanding than other Americans of criticism towards America from other countries because a.) it's often warranted, and b.) I think that it's part and parcel to being the most powerful country in the world. It's a good idea to be suspicious of the powerful.
But now is not the time to lecture to Americans.
When I detect in other nations or individuals the same qualities I dislike in some of my fellow countrymen it upsets me just as much as it does coming from Americans. I don't feel guilty about calling them on it because I'm not being a hypocrit.
When Americans I know dismiss for instance, the deaths of 500,000 Iraqi children as an inevitability I feel outraged and call them on it. I certainly don't choose the occasion of the deaths of those 500,000 children as a prime time to blame Iraq for its hideous misdeeds. Because, factual as that may be, it's also callous, insensitive and just plain wrong to do so. You certainly won't catch me lecturing ignorant Iraqi's of their governments misdeeds when they turn to me with tears in their eyes.

When Roy chose the event of the worst terrorist attack in the history of the world, an attack that killed more than 5,000 Americans as the time to editorialize and lecture America about our foreign policy it made me feel indignant. Where I come from kicking someone when they are down is considered shameful behavior even if they are a bully. Moreover it made me question Roy's humanity. Humanity folks, isn't real unless it applies to Americans too. Even capitalistic pigs are people. This should be especially apparent to a woman made wealthy when many of those same capitalistic pigs bought her book "the God of Small Things."


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