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That ignorant windbag Pat Robertson’s theory as to why Haiti was struck by yesterday’s devastating 7.0 earthquake, which has tragically taken hundreds of thousands of lives, is not surprising: the country made a pact with the Devil to escape French colonialism, of course! (Crikey. Let’s not forget that this man and his evangelist buddy, Jerry Falwell, once blamed the 9/11 attacks on gays and the ACLU.)
And it’s hardly shocking the Rush Limbaugh discouraged Americans from contributing to relief efforts, at least those linked at the White House “propaganda” website:
Filed under: 7.0 Earthquake In Haiti, ACLU, Christmas Bomb Attempt, Colonialism, Conservatards, Conservative Pieces of Shit, Dead Babies Dead Children Dead People, Death Toll, FOX News is a Joke, Gays, Haiti, Haiti Earthquake, Human Suffering, Intel, Jerry Falwell, Pacts WIth The Devil, Pat Robertson, Politicizasian Of Tragedies, President Barack Obama, Propaganda, Race Dialogue, Red Cross, Relief, Rush Limbaugh, Sadness, The White House, This is Bullshit, Tragedy, Tragic Events
In Rwanda, from where I’m writing, it’s illegal for citizens to ask one another what they are. By “what” I mean, Hutu or Tutsi. The reason why it’s against the law to make ethnic distinctions in Rwanda these days is rooted in the genocide that took place here in 1994. That year, Hutu militias, on government orders, conducted a brutal 100-day extermination of 800,000 to 1 million people, most of them Tutsis. In Philip Gourevitch’s account from the survivors’ perspective, We Wish to Inform You that Tomorrow We Will Be Killed with Our Families, he estimated that the murder rate during those 100 days was 6 people per minute.
Tutsis were the minority then (around 15% of the population) and now. But the difference between Hutu and Tutsi has always been, from what I understand, a false distinction. There wasn’t a perceived difference among Rwandans between Hutu and Tutsi until the late 19th century, when European colonizers (first the Germans, then the Belgians) insisted on that ethnic divide for their own political gains. In the 1930′s, the Belgians went so far as to issue ID cards to all Rwandans identifying them as belonging to one group or the other. In ’94, Rwandans still carried such cards. And if yours said that you were Tutsi then, it soon became your death certificate, too.
Yesterday, I visited a genocide memorial in the town of Nyamata, outside Kigali. The memorial is in what was once a Catholic church where an estimated 2,500 Tutsis were massacred in April 1994. The Nyamata church is virtually untouched from the time of the killings, with the exception that skeletal remains have been removed. Blood staining the altar, bricks walls, and rafters has never been washed away, and bullet holes perforate the tin ceiling in pretty constellations. The ground is carpeted with the dirt- and blood-soaked garments of the victims. You literally can’t walk through the church without stepping on a murdered person’s clothing. Outside, behind the building, there are two mass graves, tombs you descend down into that hold the skulls and bones of 41,000 people killed in the area (according to our guide), laid out neatly on shelves. In some cases, you can picture exactly how a person died, because there’s a huge gaping hole in their skull or it’s hacked nearly in two. It’s one of the saddest fucking things I’ve ever seen.
What’s any of this got to do with me? Or you? I wondered the same thing all yesterday, feeling destroyed by the human capacity for evil on display at Nyamata. Words withered on my tongue. Every thought that I had struck me as gilded and frivolous. What did I know about tragedy? What did I know about loss?
I write a silly blog with one of my best friends. We crack rice jokes and make puns with the word “asian” in them sometimes for the sole purpose of entertaining ourselves. Our bread-and-butter is in the making of ethnic distinctions, and also in taking the piss out of them. We take pride in the cultures from which we sprang, in the ways of our ancestors, in who and what we are. We do this and no one dies because of it. It’s unclear to me why we should be so lucky.
Yesterday, France 24 reported that North Korea executed a trade official by firing squad, “for chopping down and smuggling cherished ‘slogan trees’ on which founding leader Kim Il-Sung reputedly carved anti-Japanese messages.”
The punishment was harsh because the timber smuggled to China included “slogan trees” on which Kim Il-Sung and his followers had allegedly carved messages against Japan’s colonial rule in 1920s or 1930s.
DISGRASIAN hates colonial imperialism as much as the next person, but that kind of punishment sounds pretty colonial and imperial, not to mention, totally F-ed.
(special thanks to Mike Lee for the poster of the Booger King)
“NFL calls off China exhibition game”
“The exhibition game scheduled for China in August was postponed Monday by the NFL, which said it wanted to concentrate its “global resources” on next October’s regular-season game in London…
“Our assessment is that Chinese fans would be better served if our game in China is played at a later date after we have launched our international series of regular-season games and more effectively paved the way for the introduction of our game into China,” Waller said in a statement issued by the league.”
Translation: the Chinese Fan will not be force-fed by the NFL! F- the Colonialists! Power to the People!
Click here for full story.
I like to think of myself as a good reader. I took all of these useless lit courses in college about semiotics and hermeneutics and dialectics; I am also a proud owner of a Master’s of Fucking Around. But when I first looked at this ESPN.com story, I found myself without any critical faculties and reduced to reaching for a very full Xanax bottle:
“Kobe Bryant’s Lakers jersey is the cream of the NBA jersey crop in the United States … and now China. Sales of Kobe’s No. 24 displaced Tracy McGrady as China’s most popular seller.
The Los Angeles Lakers’ star has the top-selling jersey there, while sales of Yao Ming’s jersey in his home country continue to fall, according to results released by the NBA on Tuesday.”
The unmitigated stream-of-consciousness panic attack that followed went something like this:
profound shame not going to the playoffs profound shame i hate the lakers profound shame you’re a booger-eater profound shame shame go away come again another day eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeek
Two peach-colored Xannies later, I took a closer look at the article and received new insight. The piece was far more sinister the second time around. I realized it wasn’t about Kobe at all but, rather, about another subject almost as equally near and dear to my heart. Here are some telling lines:
2) NBA retail sales in China are expected to rise by more than 50 percent this year, the NBA said
3) The league plans, in conjunction with adidas, the exclusive NBA jersey supplier, to open 10 NBA stores in the country by 2008
4) viewing options of NBA games are on the rise as well, with broadcasts available on 51 television stations in China
Then the last line confirmed my suspicions.
5) At 1.3 billion, China is the world’s most populous country
Source: Sixteen Candles
First, the Yankees sent a “delegation” to China. To be expected. They are, after all, the Evil Empire:
“I think the power of the Yankee brand all over the world is what’s driving this”
Not to be outdone by their nemesis, the Red Sox wanted in on the action:
“…Larry Lucchino, who once called the Yankees the “Evil Empire,” said his franchise would like to help increase baseball’s exposure in China.“
Then came that NYT front-page Sports story about recruiting for Chinese kickers which Diana already, uh, discussed:
“Pro Football Grooms 3 Legs, With the Goal of a Billion Eyes”
And today, there’s a NEW STORY about China’s national team training with Major League Baseball:
“China’s participation as host of the 2008 Olympic Games is an enormous opportunity to increase the visibility of baseball in China,” commissioner Bud Selig said.
Well, good golly. I don’t know whether I should applaud all of you for your tacky unbridled opportunism or just barf on my computer.