Tag Archives: hatred

My Independence Message

Ahh, long holiday weekends. Almost missing the joy of wrapping up work early and beating the traffic, we’re off to Bangkok for eight days of eating. Well, perhaps we’ll do some other things but honestly, it’s mostly eating. Basically, we chose the 4th of July for two reasons. Falling only two days after July 4th, the Muslim holiday of Hari Raya will soon shatter the overly serene atmosphere we’ve enjoyed for over three weeks. Commemorating the end of Ramadan, July 6th and 7th are national holidays in Malaysia and being mid-week, many people will stretch it into a long five-day weekend. As we learned last year, throngs of people leave wherever they’re from and flock to our beach community for some R&R. As vehicular challenged overseas expats relying on buses and Uber for our basic needs, this means either hunkering down at the pool and living on whatever food is in the house or enduring 90 minute bumper to bumper crawls on two lane roads to get anywhere. Always craving real Thai food, we decided to escape to Bangkok for eight days and see what’s changed in seven years.

Train 36

Train 36

Modernization played a role in the second reason we’re leaving on the 4th of July. Originally planning an overnight train excursion two days later, we discovered they replaced the otherwise convenient direct train to Bangkok with a commuter train to the border. Thanks to high-speed trains unfit for Thailand’s rail system, passengers need to transfer at the border town, buy a different ticket for the Thai train (if there are any available) and then hope the Thai train arrives as scheduled. With heavy travel to Southern Thailand where most Muslim Thai people live, we defaulted to Air Asia’s daily non stop instead of fighting the crowds. Planning on attending our first Muay Thai match at the new Lumpinee Stadium, visiting some floating markets, shopping for whatever catches our eye and escaping the downpours at some museums, we’re happy to leave the hoopla behind. Bypassing Bangkok last year on our first trip to Thailand as MM2H holders, we love Bangkok’s controlled chaos more than most big cities but fully understand why so many urbanites with disposable cash flee the noise and traffic for quieter northern enclaves like Chiang Mai (as we hope to do next summer).

Statistically, more than half my readers come from the USA and before wishing everyone a healthy, safe and happy Independence Day holiday, I need to get something off my chest. Understanding I promised to lower the political content on my expat blog, I’d be remiss without commenting on the unacceptably high level of really ugly, vile hatred I’ve seen on American social media towards the entire Muslim religion.

insane

Since Trump turned ignorance and closet racism into an acceptable form of mainstream communication, America is more dangerous than most moderate Islamist nations. Representing a very small cross-section of Facebook, I’ve only got 120 or so friends, mostly childhood acquaintances and a smattering of Bay Area and Canadian friends from our working days. Already forced to de-friend dozens of old neighbors I once called friends for constantly smearing an American who voluntarily lives in a peaceful Muslim nation, I’m absolutely sickened by the racist shit I’ve seen and often pinch myself to make sure I’m not stuck in some World War II Nazi Germany alternate universe.

fascistRearing the ugliest part of technology, too many people use Facebook as a means to validate hatred and while I’m all for freedom of expression, it’s time to take stand and draw the line somewhere before one raving lunatic potentially ruins 240 years of progress. The experiment called American democracy is failing miserably and mimicking some modern version of white supremacy with moronic suggestions like “profiling American mosques” needs to go before it’s too late. Sick of defending myself and knowing I can’t erase ignorance from those blinded by hate, I’m hopelessly ashamed of what America’s become and hope anyone reading this shares my blog with someone willing to preach tolerance as the real “American Way of Life”. My America is black, white, Mexican, Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Hindi, Buddhist and everything in between. Multicultural. Like Malaysia.

 

Happy Independence Day !!

coexistance

Why it Matters to Expats

Always considering political topics off-limits in my little expat blog about retiring early overseas thanks to an unexpected layoff, lately I’ve reconsidered my stance. Knowing the first sentence may send you away, allow me a few paragraphs to explain why I believe the U.S. Presidential election affects expats every bit as much as those living on American soil. Having already lived 80% of one bad presidency on Canadian soil, Diane and I returned to the USA seven years into a George W Bush presidency and found a completely changed nation that we barely recognized despite following all the post 9/11 events from the fear campaign to the Iraq War from the comforts of the Great White Friendly Neighbor Next Door. Eventually accepting a changed world of TSA agents, racial profiling, unstoppable illegal immigration from our Latin American neighbors and right-wing racist attitudes towards everything Muslim, we figured leaving for Southeast Asia would put enough distance between us and the homeland to negate any negative concerns of the New America.

fascismSadly mistaken, the almost inevitable reality of a Donald Trump presidential nomination makes Dubya look like a pussy and everything he did and stood for pales in comparison to a dangerously scary tyrant dead set on rewriting American democracy to mimic World War II Era Europe. Aside from the obvious ignorant comments that mainstream media’s laughed off for the last seven months, Trump threatens every American around the world especially those calling a Muslim dominated nation home. (despite Malaysia’s record as the world’s most peaceful Muslim nation). Examples of the danger? Assuming Trump gets his way, it’s only a matter of time until Diane and I wind of on a Homeland Security watch list that subjects us to unconstitutional scrutiny should we ever decide to step foot in America again. Financially speaking, imagine an American economy that deports tens of thousands of workers doing jobs Americans feel are below them. Watch what happens when the rednecks that voted for “making America great again” wind up working the fields, Indian tech workers and other educated professionals all over the world get denied entry (because they look like Muslims) and expats around the world feel the brunt of a collapsing U.S. dollar and run away inflation.

If this sounds like conspiracy theory crap to you, you’re not alone. I thought so too. So to back up my arguments, I’ve posted a link below to the best article I’ve seen yet to help spread the word that’s written by a veteran journalist with better writing skills than me. Explaining in politically scientific but simple terms, David Brooks of The New York Times answers the question all us expats hear these days as we travel around the world (“Why does America support Trump”?).

whiteNobody saw Hitler as a real threat until it was too late and while we pray Trump won’t go as far as murder, what’s to stop him from making Asians and Jews or African-Americans the next group of “undesirables“? And don’t kid yourself by justifying that “there’s no suicide bomber Jews or Asians”. You’d be missing the point. Trump is a white elitist supported by every hate group in the USA including the Ku Klux Klan, skinheads, anti-black contingency and those that somehow feel Mexicans “stole all the jobs”. He’s the worst extension of a Bush policy that’s instilled a permanent sense of misguided patriotism and fear of terrorism into most Americans. Imagine ally after ally isolating themselves from America and closing their doors to would-be expats.

tradeWorse than that, America gets about 80% of its fruit and veggies from everywhere else thanks to government subsidies of corn favoring lobbyists and big industry. Expats understand why self-sufficient nations like Ecuador, Vietnam, Thailand and Chile are the bread baskets of America despite the unhealthy Cargill products sold to obese Americans (mostly Trump supporters) at Wal-Mart. Nations will slowly begin imposing trade restrictions and protectionist policies that hurt all Americans. And what’s after that? Using some false military action and hollow threats that will somehow be blamed on the Muslim world to force nations filled with those Trump loathes the most into sending all their food to a racist nation with a closed-door policy. Not a pretty picture for your grandchildren.

With Texas’ hundreds of electoral votes “conveniently” included in Super Tuesday, I’d implore anyone reading to please digest the article below. If you’re not American, blast it all over social media and maybe, just maybe, a miracle will somehow deny an ignorant electorate an opportunity to make the biggest mistake of this century.

Please click this link if you care about the future

Hoping this is the last word on the issue (at least on this blog), thanks for understanding and I promise the next post will be something related to our expat life in Penang.

Cheers from peaceful Malaysia