A couple of weeks ago I saw a foreigner couple ate a big lunch at a McDonald’s restaurant. Judging from their accent, I can tell that they are Americans. Apart from their Caucasian nose, the interesting thing I see from them is their antic behavior. They clean their table after eating and put burger wraps, carton glasses, straws and tissues into the bin themselves! It’s a rare, if not weird, thing to do. When you eat at a restaurant, the cleanin’-up-the-table part is usually done by the waitress. You just pay and eat the food. Or, at least that’s what I thought it should be.
Seeing this, a big question popped up in my head. Are they, the Americans, always doing this? Cleaning up the table themselves? Are they really accustomed to do this or that particular couple was just too diligent? When it turns out that all Americans really do this, how does this implicate us? A nation we often labelled as liberal, have no rules, secular is more ‘civilized’ than ourselves. At least in this cleaning case.
U.S. of America, to most other nations, is regarded as the bad guy. Many bad titles are attributed to this nation. The citizens are no exception. Whenever there is a war and there’s no one claimed to be responsible for the atrocity, blamed American, or Zionists if you will. Though ones often have no idea what the definition of the Zionist is.
Is it really that bad being American? I don’t know, but if I can walk in an American’s shoes for one day, maybe I would feel this way:
You call us being too exaggerated when it comes to security. We protect our building in your country with maximum, multilayer, and heavily-guarded security. As a matter of fact, you made us to do so. Whenever there is a war you point your finger at us, throwing stones and harsh words at us. Even if sometimes true that our country wage war in an oil-rich country, doesn’t mean that all wars are ours.
Now that we have turned into something you wish us to be – cautious with verbal and physical attack – you put the paranoid label in our forehead and accused us distanced ourselves from your people. Being too exclusive, you said. What’s with the labeling? Why is it so important to distinct us from other foreign countries? Aren’t we the same community of the world?
You call us out of control just because liberalism philosophy we believe in. You blamed us for teaching drugs abuse and free sex while you are the one who should responsible for your own deed. You criticize us for legalizing marijuana, but our crime rate is decreased. Why marijuana is killing your country? Ask your authorities about why they only arrest the users and give a hefty bailout, but let the big dealers run free.
If free sex is American product and against your belief, then why so many teenagers kill their babies through abortion? They had sex because of their own will, no Americans involved, I guarantee. Oh, you must then put the blame on Hollywood for offering sultry films to them. Why not submit a petition to have government filtered foreign movies, like what happens in China? So you can only watch 34 movies a year. Or you want a restriction like in boring-as-f*** North Korea where most of the TV shows are praising the president and the greatness of the country?
You call us chauvinist while you are the one who always dishonor our country and dictate us to act like your proud nation and badmouthed us for not complying your unilateral rule in almost daily basis.
If we only care about our citizens’ need and you hate us so much, why are you still able to use Apple products while we can easily embargoed your country and government will face anger by the tech-savvy and gadget-reliant people?
To sum it all, what makes you think Americans are all the same? Just in case you forget, the faults of our country, the mistakes it did to any other countries, do not represent us as an individual. Blame the authorities, the policy makers, the president or anyone in charge if you feel dissatisfied, but please don’t stab us when we meet in the street just because we’re Americans.
Author is a proud Indonesian and have no professional or private relationship whatsoever with America.