Does anybody have any stories about any kind of abuse (verbal, physical, being spit on, etc) traveling ANYWHERE in the world due to America's poor standing/reputation at the momement (due to Iraq , Bush's poor World diplomacy, and other reasons) ? I've heard of a few and am wondering how wide spread they are. Please leave any stories you know of or were involved in personally here - thanks, Zoom
I know they pay a lot more for lots of visa around the world. That's a shame, because the americans who travel outside the US are the americans who have a more open vision on the world.
I traveled with a canadian and several people asked him specifically if he was not american. That's just one sign.
not in china.
people in china r all putting their hearts into earnning money.politics? they'd rather care about the price of the real estate or the poor medical care system.
The way I see/heard it is that 99.9% of all people realise that the US-Americans who travel aren't the U.S. government.
U.S. soldiers and officials stationed abroad are another matter, though. They are fair game if you have an issue with Bush Junior and Co, be it that you throw raw eggs at an abassador, spray abuse on the walls of an army base or attack the soldiers with bombs and weapons.
Thanks for the answers from all. t_maia, I took a look at your page and see you have a heavy interest in Islam/Middle East. Well, I'm a Travel Photographer and have concentrated quite heavily on Arabic/Islamic countries since 1997 (numerous visits to Morocco, Tunisia, Egypt, Jordan, Turkey, and UAE). On my next trip I want to vist Oman, Yemen, and Syria and not have any problems. I understand that the people and the Government are thought of as seperate in Europe and some of the Islamic world but I have also heard that the very bad situation due to the Iraq occupation by the USA (very predictable outcome by anyone who had ANY idea about Iraq - Even Bush's father understood in 1990), the crazy horrible destruction of Lebanon, and Bush getting a second term in 2004 (even though it has now been widely proven that the election was stolen by the Bush crowd) made some people think that the Americans really aren't thinking clearly (which I agree with, half the country, at least, really misunderstands A LOT of things about the world). I did hear someone on a radio travel show here call in and say they were spit on in Rome as an anti -American act but who knows EXACTLY what happened - they said it was an anti American thing - maybe they were being rude, who knows. When I travel I try to keep the American thing low key but can't really do anything about the accent or passport. Maybe a few small Canadian flags here and there would be good insurance. Thanks for responding, Zoom
Most people, regardless of where they live, realize that people are not governments. Abusing people just because they are from America or wherever is just another form of racism. After living in west africa, sausi arabia and myanmar, I can say that in all that time was only ridiculed once for being an American and that was in a border town in saudi and it was by a group of teenagers riding around in a jeep looking for something to do at night. Most of the people in the middle east, africa and asia were very neighboorly and I cannot count the number of times we were invited into homes for tea or coffe. People are curious about Americans and want to talk and understand, not throw stones as you seem to believe. After 9/11 the square in downtown Nairobi was filled with thousands of Kenyans who had a mass prayer vigil for the people that were affected by that terrible act. You seem to have a very cynical view of your homeland and people in general. Its a beautiful world out there, if you let it be. Next time you travel try and make friends instead of just making photos.
I think people with an Arab complexion have a far harder time travelling (in particular to the US) then US people travelling elsewhere. Nothing like being picked on constantly because everyone thinks you look like a 'terrorist'.
I wouldn't worry about it. Be a decent person and any other decent person will give you respect.
Thank you Peter, i have to agree with you 100%. Now jekalo, to begin with I've been traveling heavily for decades and have a lot more friends outside of the US then inside. Since I also have a small apt. in Paris and live there part time (but have not been lately) I have many French friends in Paris so have a very ACCURATE idea of how America is thought of in France. They tell me because I ask and they know I can handle it (handle the truth) because I don't connect myself to the average American and the way they think. Not to be a rebel or anything but because I just don't/can't relate. I was born in the US only 6 years after my parents immigrated from Europe so I wasn't raised in an American Centerist household. I also have friends (and some family) in most European countries as well as Morocco, Egypt, Jordan, Turkey, India, Indonesia, Singapore, Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Peru, Mexico, Canada, and a few more countries if want to think hard for 5 more minutes - oh South Africa is another. As far as 9/11 is concerned I was in Istanbul when it happened and I know good and well how much MASSIVE sympathy for the USA and shock at the act itself there was during that period. Not only were our Turkish friends (my Girl Friend and Mine) outstanding , the people that worked at our little 3 star hotel and roof top restaurant were so caring and deeply disturbed at what had happened. We were back in Paris after a quick stop in Greece and people were so very kind everywhere - I saw the reaction. It was Cowboy Bush that eventually ruined those good feelings the world had towards America.
Yeah I know it's a beautiful world out there, we've been invited into many homes also but you know, in all my lifetime we've never had a "leader" anywhere close to the macho arrogant, America - is - superior, careless person like Mr. Bush. It is A FACT , spoken about often here, that the USA is disliked more today then any other time in recent history. I don't blame them. I hate Bush and his policies as much as they do SO i don't want even ONE non American to make the mistake that I somehow support the idiot - that is a nightmare to me. And even though I'm a big guy (Over 6 feet, around 200 Ibs) I still had a heavy White "French Cafe" style coffee cup thrown at me in Casablanca by some angry nut because there was some friction going on between Israel and the muslims over a tunnel near the golden mosque in Jerusalem (this was 1997). First of all I'm not Jewish but because I looked like a westerner this guy took his anger out on me. Luckily this heavy cup hit my leg (came MUCH too close to "The Family Jewels") and if this cup had hit me in the eye, teeth, or head I would have been in VERY big medical trouble. I don't need for it to EVER happen again (maybe that's why I'm so touchy about this subject)
BTW, please don't make such lite of Travel Photography (or Photography in general. How would you buy your next car, pick your vacation hotel, choose a travel destination, or choose new furniture for your home/apartment without Photography?) because we get very little respect from the Airlines and Airports as well as many people thinking they have the talent because they own some new little pocket digital camera - not so. I've looked at MILLIONS of photo's and it ain't so easy. It's our photo's that help keep the travel indusry going but no one ever connects our photo's to filling airline seats or filling hotel rooms (I must say that hotels are much more helpful giving us rooms with great views when we tell them what we do). Maybe someday the airlines will realize that without our pretty photo's their airplanes might just be half empty to many vacation destinations. How many people would go to Hawaii if they NEVER saw one beautiful photo of it? Think about that one before you say "just making photo's" to a pro photographer next time - it's NOT appreciated. You know, Dentists don't just "DRILL HOLES". Sorry, but this lack of respect for travel photography has been going on forever, I've gotten into plenty of arguements with airlines cause I was carrying SO MUCH film in my carry on, and yet I put people in their seats. Anyway, that's about it, no hard feelings, Zoom
PS. With all that said I still think I'm going to invest in some small Canadian Flags for my Camera bag, Suitcase, and maybe some T-shirts. Now a days I respect Canada's political views much more than America's so why not - just a show of support and minor safety feature. It's not a nice feeling to be embarrassed of one's country, believe me.......
[ Edit: Edited at Sep 3, 2006 11:06 AM by Zoom ]