Tuesday, August 26, 2008

沒有根的人, 還是國際公民? ∕ Rootless People, or Global Citizens?

I listened to an interview broadcast by CBC Radio One the morning of August 25, 2008 (the eve of the US Democratic National Convention in Denver) in which two American guest speakers were debating whether US voters would likely elect someone with a strong "root" in the American heartland. The issue is raised because Mr. McCain was born in the then US-controlled Panama Canal Zone and Mr. Obama, in the State of Hawaii (not continental USA). Both presidential candidates spent much of their formulating years living or working in different cities. To me, this is positive as travelling often helps broaden a person's horizon.

However, this mobility was considered as "rootless" by one of the speakers who went as far as saying that only people who have lived and stayed in one place would have the appreciation of and loyalty to the people and land that they seek to govern. The statement strikes me as odd. In these days and age, any leader of a powerful country that worth his/her grain of salt must have demonstrated international experience, not just those gained academically or through the internet, but rather hands-on, nuts-and-bolts, field operation types of experience. In fact, I shudder at the thought of the President of the United States making foreign policy statements and decisions in a personal vacuum, without an intimate understanding of how they would affect the country and the rest of the world. To this end, I am glad to learn that both Mr. Obama and Mr. McCain did have a chance to live outside of the American heartland. Let's hope that whoever is elected will not just have loyalty to the people and land of the United States, but also a good appreciation of the world of which the US is a part.

6 comments:

新鮮人 said...

美國西部大把"鄉下佬"夠住係美國幾廿年囉,
不過連中國係邊都唔知呀!
佢哋夠"根"夠地道嘞啩,
唔通佢哋又可以做總統咩?
提出這個問題啲人根本就係井底之蛙,
亦可能有固執地域和種族偏見心態,
可憐人一群!

微豆 Haricot said...

新鮮兄: 通常來說,這些人是非常守舊和疑外。

tofufa said...

Just wonder if George W. Bush lived and stayed in one place before he got elected?

The Inner Space said...

老布殊是二戰時的空軍
駐守在亞太區打日本仔
小布殊在三十多年之前
1975年老布殊當駐北京
聯絡處處長即等同大使
已經在北京踏自行車了

微豆 Haricot said...

Tofufa: As we know, in political games, the standard changes depending on whether the speaker is on the attacking or receiving end.

微豆 Haricot said...

Space: Thank you for sharing the info which is new/news to me.

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