The Anglo-Saxon Monolith?
The Euro -Guy; Dispelling the Myth
In discussions on multiculturalism, there is often a notion that the "white-European male" is some kind of monolithic creature that has dominated the affairs of westward expansion. It is often said that this homogeneous culture has raped and pillaged its way across America enslaving here, killing off there, and exploiting all other races. While that in itself is debatable, it is not my point today. What I would like to talk about, with your indulgence, is what makes up the "White-Anglo Saxon?"
When defining Anglo-Saxon, it is already important to note that it is composed of two parts, Anglo, and Saxon. Without going into history too much, let's note that the Saxons came from mainland Europe, invaded England and established themselves as the ruling class a very long time ago. Europeans have an extremely diverse cultural history of heir own. The Mongol invaders, the Moors in Spain, the Turks to name but a few, were non-European cultures that came and imposed their culture on the central European cultures. There never was a "pure" European culture or race that came to America and "imposed" itself on everyone else.
Now lets fast forward to the settlement and immigration of the Americas. It is true that the "pilgrims" represented a homogeneous group, although they were primarily bound together by their "extreme" religious beliefs, they represented a group of "Anglo-Saxons" who were white and from similar socioeconomic classes. After them came the Spaniards, the Portuguese, the Italians, the Slavs, the Russians, the Irish, the Dutch, etc. Each of these groups came with their own agenda. They settled and brought their individual cultures to the Americas. It can be said that the Spaniards for example are as different in every single way, from the "Anglo-Saxons" as are the Japanese from the Chinese, or the North Africans from the groups from the West African shores. In other words, there was never a "monolithic" presence of white Englishmen in the Americas. It is also fair to say that there is no "African monolith, or Asian monolith." The only exception to that would be the Japanese culture that prided itself in maintaining racial and cultural purity for thousands of years. The folks who made up and still make up the majority of "Americans" are as different and varied as any group of individuals that have ever populated a country.
As we move forward through the American experience, it is important to note that the colonies, were in fact English settlements, and therefore, the "ruling" class that emerged throughout the Independence movement and the subsequent formation of the United States was dominated by white English, upper class citizens. These men held almost all the positions of power. I wish to note however; two things, first of all, the American experience does not only exist in the thirteen colonies, (I am referring to Canada, and southern US, the Spanish colonies), and second, our history is full of examples where underrepresented groups were included in decision making and recognized for the first time in the history of the world. The Declaration and the Constitution are full of "inclusive" language; the Founders recognized the need to acknowledge the valuable contribution the various immigrants were making towards the formation of our nation.
I believe it is critically important to understand that with the exception of the West African slaves, ALL immigrants came to the United States willingly, voluntarily.
Some time ago, America was described as a "Melting Pot," this meant that the people and their cultures were blending and that the "synergy" of the new combination of cultures and knowledge was better and stronger than the individual pieces. They agreed to speak and teach a common language, English, so that their children could understand one another and work together and live together, for the common good of America. They thought that by giving up some of their own culturalistic individuality, that they were creating a better community for us all.
Recently, a movement has been started by some disaffected portions in some groups in our society that wishes to move away from the "melting pot ideal" and towards a more "mixed salad" approach, where distinctive layers of cultures are all part of society, with each individual layer having equal "value." This in itself is not a bad idea, but in its implementation or execution, some important values are being misplaced. When we begin to give away the strength of our synergy as an American people, and try to place importance on selective parts of individual cultures at the expense of other cultures, then we are giving up the very strength of our nation. It has always served the American people well to come together, to give up some of their cultural idiosyncrasies. After all, America is the place where in 1998 more than 3 million people left their own countries, left everything behind, to live in the greatest country on earth, the United States of America.
So next time you hear someone telling you that the "white male" is some kind of monolithic entity, look at yourselves, think about your own heritage, how pure are any of our bloodlines?
nothing but hippies, punks, dopers, and wannabes here....
the 'silent railings'(credit to Sherry Hurry for the use of her coined term) of an over the hill '78er.
I remember when...The bus driver for the Bad Vilbel morning bus...gosh what a story...we used to meet at Tex Russilo's house about 630 in the morning...go down to the basement and put on some Nugent or equally rocking music...then at about 645 the bus driver would show up and we got stoned together, in the basement...it was cool, then we would all stagger out to the bus, all the proper and prim kids were already on the bus...waiting for us, hands folded in their laps and abject fear written across their faces, they knew what we had been doing, and were worried that the bus driver would drive off the road somewhere...but you know what? We always got to school, on time, safely, and without incident. Of course our small band Jim Elton, Tex, Goober, Dave, or later Jeff, and a few others would get off and head to the stones for a "pre-school" bowl, the one at Tex's was breakfast for the mind, the stones was social...then rush back to the Front Steps for a last smoke before first period. I remember when...
I guess if you hang around the front steps long enough, people you don't even know come up to you and try to bum smokes off of ya. Don't ya know my ration card only gives me 4 cartons of cigs a month, and this is June 2. I went to Shit Park yesterday and traded em for 100 mandies and 10 grams of some kickass chokin red. Course Joanne was all over me, but I'm looking for Carla Danzer, she said she would roll me a primo 3 paper cone! Anybody seen her? And Where's Siggi anyway? Still in the U-Bahn at the Miquel-Addickes Allee?
Da Benitos Pizza, I gotta tell ya, to me, it was the best in Frankfurt...It is located at the northeast corner of Dornbusch. The exhaust fan is ( I was there in February 97 with Laura Lerch....mmm Laura Lerch) strategically located at the top of the stairs going down to the U-Bahn station at Dornbusch, (which I believe is the station that Tom Solovieff lost his leg at?, anybody seen him?) anyway, the smell of pizza would hit you in the face when you got of the U-Bahn, transitioning from downtown, the school, the px etc to catch Strasse 13...now if you planned well, you had about 12 minutes before the next strasse, ( you remember strasse 22? that damn thing was like making love with a condom on....got ya as far as Gibbs, and then what?) (course the "Currywurst" at the Schnell Imbiss in front of Gibbs Kaserne was the best in Frankfurt too. And if you were gonna walk to the 97th General Hospital, it was the right place to eat first.) Also if you walked from Gibbs to Atterberry? (Friedberger Warte) you could walk through the morgue at the 97th and scare the shit out of yourself...)Years earlier I would go to Betts to the roller rink...who remembers? That was my first..and last... experience with Boones Farm and exercise...a whole new meaning to the term Technicolor burps. At the Friedberger Warte we caught the 34? bus..right guys? Usually hopping, and there were only three stops to BV so if there were no checkers when you got on...you were ok...Here's the trivia quiz....What was the name of the stop that was at the city limits of Fkft and BV? The announcement went, "Stadtgrenze..."
Hey Adam, remember stealing those Mercedes flags from the dealership in BV? Were we camping at the rifle range....? I remember when...John Harrington.....