Sunday, November 15, 2015

Our Sudden French Patriotism

Ok, people.  Stop trying to make our sudden French Patriotism about racism.   There are viable reasons why this terrorist attack in Paris has stirred so many hearts in the US, and it isn't about race or class or favoritism in skin color.

War is horrific.  Terrorism is horrific.  Killing is horrific.  But there's are reasons we are so stirred by these horrific events in Paris, more so than many other horrific atrocities.

1.  Progeny.  Yes, the USA is very multicultural.  We have immigrants from all over the world here.   Probably every country.  I think people of European origin here are probably in the minority now compared with ppl of non-European ancestry.  But our country itself has only 3 parents:  Great Britain, France and Spain.  Yes, we fought them all to gain our independence, but we still have a filial loyalty toward them.   They are much more "important" to us than the rest of the world.  We feel more connected to them and ARE more connected culturally, in art, language, food and drink. 

Yes, we have many other cultures and  traditions here now.   They are all wonderful.  But that doesn't change who our nation's parents are!

2.  War and Peace.  Second reason: there are civil wars and border wars going on in Syria, Lebanon (Beirut), Iraq, Egypt, Kenya, and many other countries.  The list goes on and on.  Yes, these wars, and the terrorist activities of various groups in them are horriffic.  But nobody is surprised when bombs go off there killing innocents.  It seems like an every-day occurrence to those of us who live in non-war-torn countries.  It isn't that we don't care.  We simply can't keep track of all the bombings.  I'll wager it would take a week of the news staff at any major news network to tally all the suicide bombings in one of these war-torn places and give us a count of the bombings and a total body count.  It is simply normal human nature (and not a grand racist conspiracy) for most people to tune it out when there's another such bombing.  You'd go insane if you thought about all of them.  And maybe that's indeed one of the reasons so many ppl are going insane?

When something like this happens in a peaceful country, especially one so beloved for their art and culture, it sends out much bigger shock waves.  And many more people are inclined to speak out and show their support.

3.  It could have been here.  Because of our ties with France when we hear if horrific events like this,  here in the USA everyone recognizes: "It could have been here again."  Of course people are going to make a stand and show their support.  It is only natural.  This is their 9-11, and we will show our support and sympathy.

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