Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The good, the bad and the alien

This started in the bus, because of the local Public Transit's obstinate attempts to stress that there is not as much bigotry in this area as one might suspect . To answer my question about the foreign language advertising on the local buses:
"It is the way to celebrate the city's diversity" pointed , once , a bus driver.
However, it was not a greeting in Hungarian that drew my attention this time . This time it was the first paragraph of Title VI of the civil Rights Act of 1964 - you know, the one that starts with "No person in the United States... "[1]. No, no person, but the alien. 
Yes, it seems only fair that a non-citizen resident will not have access to exactly the same benefits as the citizen has, but it is the distinction that bugged me. Because, you see , beyond legalese the distinction between person and alien is more like human, non-human...

Or maybe this did not even started now. It is just me again as I start feeling uneasy, as I do each time when I hear the speech about american values floating around as a hot air balloon, a bubble ready to burst. I feel embarrassed for all the people here that had something to teach about values but were too busy working , and teaching and being in the community to waste their time telling one or another how they are not up to this values just because an alien is just an alien...

Or maybe this is the ongoing argument between the white conservative husband and his alien liberal wife:

He says :" Obama ruined the economy"
and adds "and he made abortions legal"
She counters with Roe v. Wade
and how she won't ever impose 
her life options    on others.
He says" They don't like us-
an american is a target wherever he goes.
Remember Mumbai, last year?"
She shouts back:"Kashmir,
you see that's not some 
expensive sweater we have here..."
He bawls: taxation is a sin,
she sights: I pay so much in taxes
and see no benefits like health care 
I could afford,
or a classroom for the poor kids too
with computers but no rain coming in.

Or maybe this started more than  ten years ago, in Germany, at Ludwig-Albert Uni. There I met the first american citizen [ever] . I was studying about mental representations, he studied Neo-Marxism. I shut him up, but my only argument was that I grew up in a communist regime. He taught me that geography does not equal knowledge. You see, this is the american way, though you never use the words "american" and "way". You just keep your mind open so you can question and use your reason before jumping to conclusions. So you go back to the library and read ... Marx, Lenin, Lukacs, Djilas, Tismaneanu... whatever you can get your hands on...so you can think, so you can reason...We can all learn from each other: the aliens, the good, the bad....

Or maybe this did not even start...Maybe it is just a rambling about a child with many gifts that grew up to fast, in the spotlight ...Or about a land full of confusions and people: sometimes good, sometimes bad, sometimes alien...

[1] No person in the United States shall, on the ground of race, color, or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.(Pub. L. 88-352, title VI, Sec. 601, July 2, 1964, 78 Stat. 252.)

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Mumbai City said...
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