Monday, December 29, 2008

Commentary: Adventures in Higher Learning

So a very dear friend of mine (yes, I DO mean YOU Stormy!) saw my last post on my Adventures in Higher Learning this semester and wrote me a fairly long response on it. I was so tickled pink and thoroughly amused at his response that I asked his permission to post it. So here it is in all its glory!

Just thought I would comment on your rant in this form, as a comment on your actual blog would likely go on for too long. First off, I think it is safe to say that no one can rightfully accuse you of not having patience and understanding, for the simple fact that you didn't stab anyone throughout the time you've spent with these pompous, self proclaimed eternally held-down by society, %*^$!'s. Granted, I'm white with about a third mexican, so I don't really qualify as a minority in any sense of the word, but there are so many things about the matter that irritate me. I'll just pick up lines from your post, and SoC them.

"decolonize ourselves from the food industry's manipulation and corruption. They are enslaving us and we need to demand justice and human rights! For example, the WHITE MAN made blacks eat soul food and southern food, and that's yet another subtle way that the white man is killing off minorities!"
- Hey, hon? They're called "aisles," they have different food in each of them, and you don't need to show racial identification to go down any of them. Now I can see light in the theory that there is a multi-national conglomerate backed conspiracy to kill off millions upon millions of people via food. McDonalds, KFC, Burger King, Wendy's, the list goes on. But in the end, if you eat it, it's your fault. Besides, until you grow, slaughter/harvest, prepare, and serve all your own food and drinks...yeah, you're padding someone's wallet. Welcome to the system.

"I personally have been lucky enough to find a delicate balance between being vegan and NOT making my family and loved ones feel inferior. So I'm taking this opportunity to inspire you to start on your quest to uncover yourself and reclaim WHO YOU REALLY ARE!"
- Modest, isn't she? If this is how she portrays her "family and loved ones" in her mind, I'd hate to see her opinions on her enemies. (Of course, as open minded as I try to be, I'd kind of generally hate seeing her opinions on anything as they seem, at least from the samples you've provided, so hypocritical and painfully...whiny.) Besides, and my facts may have expired here, but I recall several times over hearing the theory that it was evolving man's move to a more carnivorous diet as opposed to feeding on the plantlife of the regions, which helped to lead to the restructuring of the skull to accomodate a better functioning brain. (The enormous molars used to breakdown heavy tubers and the like were toned down as teeth more adept at tearing were gradually built up. The resulting cranial room left room for the brain to develop. As I said, though, this theory may have been disproven in the past few years, as I've been out of the evolutionary science loop.) And on a final note for this little bit...If your food defines you, you may need more than a menu change. Eating healthy, changing your lifestyle, that's one thing, but I doubt switching out chitlins (spelling?) for a tofu casserole will lead to a massive spiritual breakthrough. Of course, if it does, hey, grats.

"He started out by saying that my Americanization and being a 2nd generation Korean American threw him off because I was "challenging". (Read: He can't or doesn't know how to deal with his me, who probably doesn't fit his idea of what an Asian should be.) He told me he wasn't quite sure of how to handle me because of this."
Ok, this one is going to take awhile. Let's start off with the 1st part, Americanization. I don't agree with half the shit this country has done, especially in the past decade or so, but the fact of the matter is, for all that's wrong, there is a lot right, and there is potential for it to get better. Going around talking about "Americanization" is not going to improve anything, it's merely a stereo-typing. And think about this...(Well, *you* have, but ignore the choice of words, I rant with the habit of forgetting who I am ranting to sometimes.) The freedom you have to bad mouth this country non-stop, *within* this country? Try that in China, or Pakistan, or Iraq. But make sure you've handled your final arrangements and said goodbye. And the ability to move outside of your caste and pursue education, career, etc? Yet another part of Americanization. Every time someone screams racial prejudice or harrassment, and someone actually does something about it, yet another part of America.

It's taken some time for these very freedoms that are a part of America to form, (and obviously there are other countries that share them as well) but that is proof in itself that there is more than just a stagnant pond of filth by which to define America as a culture. Granted, there is some real shit in this country, true racism, mindless cruelty, corruption, sexual abuse, biggotry, and more, but there is filth in every country. It is the true effort, vision and determination to work through it and seek a better future, that defines a society as successful. There have been many great leaders who have worked to this end, throughout the world, and in America, and millions upon millions more, who, even though nameless in history, have worked just as hard for those ideals. Just remember, everything you do here, that you couldn't elsewhere, is proof of your "Americanization." (This rant brought to you by an idealistic white guy caught between utter disgust for humanity and still harboring hope for it.)

*Phew* Ok, next point. "Challenging?" What, the "Sarah Palin cultural identity Spin and Speak" didn't have the same data on people of Korean descent as what was right in front of you? Seriously, I would think that a part of working in a group with someone is to actually FRICKING GET TO KNOW THEM! Especially when working on, of all things, negotiations, as your subject. But saying that, in my opinion at least, is akin to saying, "I'm too caught up in my own self-righteous delusion of fighting racism to look beyond what the sterotype says about you. I'll just accuse you of being a corrupted sloth of society to accomodate my own inability to grasp reality." Yeah, real winner there.

"Surprise #2? His critique of a weakness of mine was that I either could not, or would not, or DID NOT, hear the MINORITY VOICE. That's right, me, I don't hear the minority voice."- ... (Er, ok, looking back on your actual post, I just realized that you had that response to it too, but...yeah. What more can I say, when silence says it all?)

Well, I'll bring this lovely little rant to a close here. As I noted above, ignore some of the pronoun uses, as it isn't directed at you, like I said, when I get going sometimes, I forget to what audience I am speaking. And yeah, it's ok to pretend you've never met me before. ><

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