The Storming of the Capitol and other Horror Stories
I studied International Relations in University and so when something like ‘Let’s storm a government building because we didn’t get our way’ happens, it #takesmeback (see what I did there?) to my IR 205 Intro to US Domestic Politics module and how I took that module literally to be able to back myself up and hate the US for a reason other than the fact that it is a country full of basic bitches. There were so many books on hating America, I couldn’t believe I had found almost a gold mine.
While there was literature on America’s annoyingly interventionist attitude (or, as I like to call it, the ‘meddling kids’ attitude), failing economy, gun violence and overall demonstration of ‘realism’, there was also literature about cosmopolitanism and being part of a single community that grabbed my attention. ‘Perhaps the reason that the US feels the need to intervene in other countries’ affairs is that it believes we are part of one big community and we ought to take care of each other’, I had thought. And then I had LOL-ed. No, the reason the US likes to intervene is that it’s a selfish prick of a country. Don’t get me wrong- that’s probably everyone but not all countries have that kind of defence spending to blow away on other countries’ problems.
As news of the storming of the Capitol spread and people on my social media, those who have absolutely nothing to do with the US by way of ethnic or familial connection started going on about how this brought shame to the nation, I had to ask myself, ‘should I care as much as these guys care about this? Do I care?’ And the answer I got from my insides was ‘No, I do not care’. I have to say, my sister put it most articulately- ‘I don’t care, it’s a bewakoof country anyway’ (bewakoof= hindi for foolish). And she was right, it is a bewakoof country and I find it hard to care because that is a country that has a messed up voting system that allowed for an orange buffoon to become President. Once leader of the free world, the US is now home to brats throwing tantrums in a government building because they didn’t get what they want. The country with the largest defence spending in the world couldn’t defend itself against actual, real life idiots.
This is just another expression of the fact that America is NOT the greatest country in the world, that those who believe it is are greatly disillusioned, how it is NOT the home of the brave (it is home to a man wearing a Vikings helmet, looking like a Flinstone) or the land of the free (it is the land of fascism and treason). It is the birthplace of people who believe they know more about diseases than doctors and feel that their human rights are being violated when medical professionals ask them to wear a mask.
Whenever America has intervened in other countries it has used cosmopolitanism to justify it. I want cosmopolitanism to be real, I want the world to be one big international community where we don’t see race and colour, but even a wishful thinker like me knows that that is not true. We live in a world where the international community exists for as long as it serves national interests, where countries are basically savages, grabbing whatever they can consume. In a world where the international community has basically crumbled, should we even bother caring about the nonsense that went down at the Capitol? The international response tells us that people do care. Leaders have expressed their concerns over how this was a direct challenge to democracy, how this fascist act spells doom for the spirit of freedom and how this is not the America the world knows.
Perhaps the most hilarious of these responses came from the Indian Prime Minister (talkin’ about you, Modi G) who said that he was distressed about the goings-on at the Capitol and as I was thinking it, others had expressed my thoughts exactly — sort out your own issues before you go out being a little bitch to the US. When Bo Jo tweeted something similar, other activists commented the same thing- how come you had no response to the farmers’ protests in India, the largest in the world, but an incident in the US is enough for you to give a response? Sure, the US and the UK have a special relationship, and sure, Modi G probably wasn’t the one who typed that tweet, but it just makes you wonder.
So, we are probably not part of an international community because when it’s one big community, you don’t respond selectively. All tragedies are equal and all support is equal. The crisis in Yemen is never spoken about on the news. Palestine has suffered so many atrocities for decades and nobody cares because Israel is friends with America. This is not an international community. This is a school playground where some countries act as bullies and take away other countries’ lunch for shits and giggles. Okay, probably not for shits and giggles, but you know what I mean.
What astounds me most is that after continual displays of mediocrity at best, there are still people who consider America the place to be. You know these people- the average middle class non-white, non-American person who acts as a little bitch to America. Why is it the place to be? Education? There are loads of top ranking universities outside of America and possibly even cheaper. Job prospects? I can think of at least five people in my inner circle who tried to stay in the US after university but couldn’t because nobody would sponsor their visas. The governance? I have heard of multiple stories of towns in Florida electing cats as mayors. The people have more faith in pets than they do in other people and yet here we are, dying to be one of them. The culture? Do you really need to be in America to see American culture? The music, film, theater, language, art, fashion, etc. has made it out into the world thanks to globalisation. On an average day we have a ridiculous amount of interaction with American culture. I can see it in today alone- I woke up to the alarm on my American iPhone (made in China), lit a candle from American Bath & Body Works when my dog farted, made a milkshake for my sister out of American Oreo cookies, liked memes on American app Instagram about an American debacle, and then rewatched American show Brooklyn 99. Don’t need to go to America to experience American culture at all.
What is it about the American dream that still draws people to it? James Trustow Adams (1931) described it as ‘that dream of a land in which life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement’. With the amount of racism, Karenism and ignorance that prevails in the US, the American dream is nothing but an American nightmare at this stage. So, why do we still have in our midst people crazy about the US, almost serenading the country, having this desire to be associated with the US? Imperial residue, that’s what it is. This belief, that somehow, just because America has white people, it’s probably better.
If the storming of a government building by a bunch of brats isn’t enough for people to realise that the pedestal America is on is too damn high, perhaps there is no hope and perhaps this inherent white supremacy will continue for generations.