I have been to the States many times.
Interestingly, ATS has profoundly altered my way of observing this weird and wonderful land. Firstly being a tall Aussie lass, I felt like I was a
petite slender elf moving around the malls, the fatty boom sticks stand out...bless them, but it really STANDS out to a visitor...so I thank you
America for making the Zazzbot feel like she was Elfin and Model-like even for just a deluded month...
How does the rest of the world view America? With partial envy, but mostly fury. Interestingly, Americans view themselves much the same. With a sense
of pride from belonging to a nation that should represent freedom, justice and democracy. Its' own people feel they either are furious at their lot in
life, or envious of those who have more. The sweet part is, no matter how much they complain or attack each other, should someone else attack them for
the very thoughts and way of life they themselves object to, they will be met with a fury and abandon.
"By the rude bridge that arched the flood,
Their flag to April's breeze unfurled;
Here once the embattled farmers stood,
And fired the shot heard 'round the world."
Ralph Waldo Emerson's "Concord Hymn" (1837),
I visited the Concord and Lexington areas of Massachusetts,and meandered to the Old North Bridge where in April 19, 1775 the shot was fired that was
heard around the world. I spent quite some time amongst the very descendants of the minute men who were the first in battle against the British. Their
psyche and pride reflect a sense of timelessness, they speak of their fallen ancestors all those centuries ago with the same pride and loss had it
been their own father, mother or sons. I sat and looked at the Bridge where America began, and reflected...what had this country become since that
shot was heard. Has America become the vision these freedom fighters had for their children's children? What do Americans truly think Freedom is?
When someone fights for their independence they do not take it fore granted. In Australia, we gained ours quietly, and therefore we do not have the
same passion for our 'freedoms'.
What I noticed was that many American communities replaced their British 'overlords' with another form of controls....Before the frothing of the mouth
ensues from my American cousins allow me to elaborate
Nationalism and Religion
Pride and a sense of belonging to a clan or community is what Americans get from these two social controls.
Whilst I am more than happy for anyone to identify themselves with being from one group or another, I was left perplexed as to why only a small
percentage of Americans question the very nature of the identity they were raised in.
After all....Is it natural to be a American? Is it natural to be a Christian, or Moslem, Or Buddhist etc...(lets face it with America I am really
referring to Christians) What is a learned behavior? Why do people clutch so tightly to these identities....Is it because as Humans we don't want to
feel alone....that if I have more people in my psyche set, then we must be right.......
I have traveled extensively throughout the Middle East and would it surprise my dear Americans that the fanaticism of being a American or a God
fearing Christian, actually stands out far more than being a moslem....Ouch I know, but truly it does, they go about their day to day and don't really
mention Islam to you. Where as In the States, being a American or a Christian is very much front of mind at all times. Who is being brainwashed? Who
is more fanatical about that which they were raised in? Lets face it, you are born into a nation and a religion usually, and you are taught to be that
identity from the get go.....The end result in the Middle East and Indonesia (largest Islamic country in the world) is that as a visitor, you really
don't hear about it and have it forced on you.....I sadly could not say the same for the US.
The Gun culture is really odd also for me, where I view guns as things that kill people, sitting at the Concorde bridge, I understood why the right to
bear arms was so important...250 odd years ago, so needed and now we need to consider; what had guns become for the Minute Mens descendants?
Do Americans carry guns because they are fighting off oppressors? Or fighting off each other? I have a police officer friend who is a captain, and she
never took her weapons home...she has four boys, and said..."we Americans have been tricked somewhere along the line into believe these things protect
us and represent freedom, really they just kill us" I thought it interesting. The gun debate is so vastly different, from Massachusetts where they
love their leso marriages and political correctness, to Texans' who shoot the TV with one of their 11 guns, the opinion is so varied.
Why is it varied? Is it a matter of haves versus haves not ?
Why does one part of America feel disinclined to be around Guns, and another treat it like they are collecting treasure? A symbol of freedom.
I pondered that a bit, Why is a gun a symbol of freedom whenit takes a life? Truly, I need no gun or any symbol, to know my freedom is in my thoughts,
and no one can change that. That is the only true freedom, when one unshackles that which they have been taught, and enjoys 'relearning' and
formulating opinions and understandings that are not passed onto them from their parents, because their parents passed it down to them.
Speaking of teaching our kids things.....There is a glaring disparity between areas of the US, I found it to have the best education in the world in
some places, where teachers actually care for students, and in others, I had to teach a lad with only 4 teeth how to spell AC/DC...the Rock band from
Surely Education (not censored and controlled education) should be for all? Is this a socialist view? when "socialism' is bandied as a insult, is it
really people acting as a mouthpiece for others to prevent equality, for truly equality amongst people can only come from the power of learning.
Especially from re-learning. If Americans could relearn their identity, and what makes them who they are....perhaps they would no longer separate
themselves from other countries and use guns and religious rants on each other within their own house. I hope Americans can lead the way in realizing
all people are born equal, fluke puts you on one rock compared to another, and because this sense of earned and fought freedom is so prevalent still
in the US psyche, It would be wonderful for them to lead the way on freedom on a bigger scale than just themselves....and I don't mean by invading a
country for no reason and pretending to make them free
Perhaps we should all "relearn" what FREEDOM means, without money and power controls.
.......Relearning can only benefit the American Adult. They cannot blame a god or a devil, for that which they purely control themselves. The outcomes
of our lives, are a direct result of our own intents and actions. If our intent is to teach all, and provide for all, then America would indeed become
the great country its minute men fought and died for.
Homo- Leso versus Hetro ac, Pro Life/Pro Choice, Women v men, White v Black.....
YAWN and the list goes on...
All the yelling on these social issues...It made my white arse twitch.... everywhere you go, in the newspapers, cafes, bars, someone has a opinion on
these divisive social topics. Why do they come up at all? Who are you a marionette for as you sit and scream on these issues? Why does one skin
colour, religion, gender, sexuality have any impact on you, other than if you fear it for some reason?
These Social issues are by no means limited to the USA, but for some reason, I just hear it more there anywhere.
Why is this? It is because of a sense of freedom of speech that Americans spout their opinion whether its asked for or not? Hmmm, Really what one does
with their Uterus, God or Girly/Boy Bits is really none of my business, its quite boring to think I care....Why do you all care to yell so loudly
All countries have peoples enslaved to a sense of nationalism...whilst it brings protection and pride, it causes great grief around the world, America
is not alone in this, in fact we all stand pretty much shoulder to shoulder exposing our pride of origins.....I wander when someone will stop and
'Umm isnt being a "type" or culture just all made up to make us all feel better about not being alone? A excuse to gain power over another. It gives
us a sense of entitlement'
"I am right...you are wrong, you do not belong"....As we all chant this in one way or another via bibles, koran's etc from our countries and our
religions, I hope that a country as great as America takes the lead to start to question what it means being human, rather than just what it means to
be an American.
That all said Mr Zazz is a Yank...so you produce wonderful as much as anything else .sigh~.......
A big thank you to the ATS ers on all sides of the nation that met up with the Zazzbot and showed her round. Truly your hospitality and friendliness
goes beyond measure....
There were Dego Americans ATSers, African American ATSers, Muslims and Jews, and all other sorts of multi cultural wonderfulness. They came together
as Americans showing a Aussie BOT a great time.
edit on 23-9-2010 by zazzafrazz because: Title needed Lipstick