“Former UF Linebacker Channing Crowder told The Palm Beach Post he didn’t know people in London spoke English” reported Alligator (25 Oct 2007).
He is the Football (American) player of the University of Florida. Although I have known that people (even American themselves) made joke about general knowledge of American people. I had a feeling that it’s not the case with the University Going people.
But signs are everywhere. The sports American usually play are American Football, baseball and basketball. Keeping aside the basketball two other games are just American games. The so called World Series they hold are just their own teams with little bit of some other countries involved.
The News that goes on their channels is mostly local news, news about the accident here or there, what the Hollywood celebrity is doing.Very less of the news is global. Yes they do have very good documentaries aired regarding stories around the world, but these are very less part of their main news portions. Even most of the world news is about middle east, little bit about the Afghanistan and somewhat about the Africa.
You hear names of East Asian Countries (thanks to Indian Economy and Pakistan’s problems they do know that Asians are not simply Japanese, Chinese, Taiwan’s or Koreans) , India and European countries during the market news, unless ofcourse it bigger news.
My roommate was little taken back to see that CNN did not gave a good time coverage to 18 Oct bomb blast, although a day later they increased their coverage. But that means when every one in Pakistan was panicking what was going around, CNN did not cared.
Is this Arrogance? I think no. It their culture of living away from everyone. It might be because their country is by land very little in contact with anyone else.
Or it might be because America it self is so huge and each city in itself so complete that they did not care much about outside.
Or it could be that because in America ‘Me and My Self’ is more important than anything else,
Or because in past when settlements were established man/woman only cared about their surroundings to survive. This have made them accustomed to only give importance to themselves and things around them.
Their small towns are much better than many cities. In them you can find everything school, post-office, their own news paper, small radio, a local channel, local police and sherif, ….. So complete little world that they dont think about outside world.
Point is they dont need outside world. I mean why a UF-Football player needs to now that London even exists. He can believe that only America is The World and play to his best strength against his own America citizens, earn a draft and then after some age retire with lots of money. Or he can play bad, finish his degree and start some white color job.
His economy and family is not dependent on any foreign thing, well oil is there but American Govt. has good control over it.
At the same time I have met and seen many intelligent people. The Testimony about the Pakistan in-front of Senate Committee (I think) was clear showing how much they know and understand about Pakistan. I was little amazed that they knew so much; although some questions were usual dumb ones, but many were good piercing ones.
Their universities are hub of research about everything that exists (or existed) in the universe. And I have heard researchers in these universities know more about different societies of the world than the people who are living in them. Many of their newspapers are universally quoted when any political/economical change is coming. (Washington-Post and Newyork Times reports are notoriously used by Pakistani Pundits which politician could be getting up and whose time has ran out; definitely ran-out means in the American Clock)
Is it the capitalist thinking or mass economy based media that thinks its best for profit by just keeping people in the illusion of their own importance? I still dont know.
But I know harms of this media-dominance, which only knows that culture is what American culture, hit songs what are are English hit songs, fashion and in-thing is what is going around in their own surroundings.
When the era is defined by the names of the people who are famous in America. When Great depression Period in economy is only when it was depressed in America. You can bet people acceptable to them even in other countries will be which are closer to them. People who eat and wear like them, whose phrases and emotions are like them.
It is unfortunate but true that if world has to change for better, Americans will have to change. Change to tell their govt. that they do not need to live under “Capitalist-Iron Curtain”
This will greatly challenge the other cultures and their histories. Because unfortunately no one except developed West is cataloging the history. If this is level of dont-care from our side, how can we call American to be Arrogant if he does not know that Pakistan existed before 9/11.
In this only cultures of those people survive which honor them, save them, catalog them, research them.