Friday, May 18, 2012

Us and them

Nationalism is a funny thing.

One the one hand, we have people running around telling just about anyone that has sensory input enough to listen that their particular part of the world is the best things since sliced bread. That the people who happen to live in their particular neck of the worldwood are something special indeed, and that they are that on very specific grounds. That they are ever so eager to tell you all about, should you happen to look as if you have ears.

To say that they are quite vocal about it would be to silence the quite vocal people of the world by comparison - it is, after all, quite hard to live up to their example.

Suffice it to say you hear them before you know them. Especially when international sports happens.

On the other hand, all this loudmouth talking flies out the window under certain very specific conditions. For instance when it comes to poor people. These people may quailfy as a true, bona fide, one hundred percent, chop of the ol' block members of the oh so celebrated national community, but every special treatment that citizens of this particular part of the world deserve by virtue of belonging - suddenly doesn't seem to apply anymore.

Am I really my brother's keeper?

One would think that all this loudmouthing about "us" being special would translate into a sense of solidarity with others of the "us" category. Especially when it is obvious that there are people among us that could use that solidarity right about now.

One would think.

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