Knowledge of the world is available to everyone; some have more difficulty getting it than others, say, like people in the highlands of Papua New Guinea. The point about Americans is that they have as much access to knowledge of the world than anyone in a developed country with telecommunications infrastructure and freedom of the press. They play a major role in the world, but seem to know the least about what really happens in it. This could be for many reasons: maybe no holidays; maybe it puts your career at a disadvantage to head off for a year or so. Or maybe its not a cultural imperative.
maybe maybe maybe
Americans have a bad rep at most countries because: (1) most of them don't speak a foreign language & expect others to speak English, (2) they are often loud & obnoxious, (3) they tend to get drunk & do stupid things, (4) Bush's foreign policy, (5) _______________ "fill in the blank". I know some Americans are nice, but to my shame, when I'm travelling overseas, I won't volunteer my nationality to the locals.
Just a thought, I think 1, 2 and 3 can apply to many native English-speaking Westerners, not just Americans.
Sh*t, how'd I end up in this conversation again?
I think we should diss the Martians. Coming to earth on the big, clunky spaceships and asking people to take them to their leader. Who do they think they are? Do they really think humans have nothing better to do that to drive some green, antenna-ed sucktion-cup family to Washington or London or Ottawa? They could at least have the foresight to buy a map!
So I say: down with Martian tourists! Let them visit Space Mountain and be done with it!
Ottawa? Like Martians would bother with Canada. They'd only worry about the first class countries - like Russia, USA, Japan and France.
The author of this thread needs to sit back and take a look at his own views for a second. Yes, Americans tend to be a little isolated and arrogent (The triple A's-Arrogant American A$$holes, I call'em). I've run into them everywhere, just as I have many other nationalities. I believe there should be some sort of push to get the darn isolationists out into the world, like said above, maybe they won't be so liable to blow them up.
I've surprised more than a few people in my travels with my nationality which is quickly followed up with, 'Wow, most Americans are X,Y, & Z'. Let me ask you, how is that stereotype any different from the one you're judging us for having?
And you're right, there should be world-wide push for passports and travel. The world is no more yours than anyone elses.
EVERYONE should travel more....the more you see, the smaller the planet gets.......
What?? America is not the center of the universe!!! Thats what we learned in my school in Texas. I guess teachers should travel more.
It's true most Americans don't travel beyond their own borders, some of this has to do with an old "travel America first" campaign and some of it has to do with the fact that there is so much to see and do right there in the U.S.A. from the Grand Canyon to the beautiful Northwest coast and desert Southwest and so on and so on. America can be a great place to visit or a nightmare for foriegners and natives alike. You have to use a little horse sense and do your research before you travel. My wife and I are teachers and have been for the last 28 years and have traveled a bit and taught in Nigeria, Saudi and Myanmar as well as in the U.S.. We believe, and our experiences bear it out, that most people are good, hard working and honest, yes even the Americans. You need to look at the people, not the governments to get a real picture of a country. Keep on traveling without any preconcieved notions and you will have a much better experience. Happy trails, partner.
Well said Jekalo,
I'm encouraged to see teachers who travel, as I said in my earlier post. Sounds like you have a very healthy attitude of how to view the world and I'm sure your students benefit greatly for it. This is what we need!
Everyone should travel more.... yes. But before that happens, people should be taught to THINK more first.
i think more people from everywhere should travel more often but a lot of the americans i have met should have just stayed home coz their minds were too closed to appreciate anything they experienced. this has been my experience with most people from english speaking countries (except canadians and the irish) so many times i have been so ashamed to be asutralian and have stopped speaking english whilst abroad coz i didn't want ppl to judge me as being another stupid brit/american/australian/kiwi who can't speak another language and wont try to learn. If u go to another country and spend the whole time comparing to to your own (and saying how your country is better) then this is a sign that travelling is not for you and you should stay home rather than going overseas and giving your country a bad name.