Timor again (sorry Lou)

Alan Bradley alanb at SPAMelf.brisnet.org.au
Sun Nov 21 17:43:05 MST 1999

From: João Paulo Monteiro
> I asked her:
> - It's curious, most of the small shops here are owned by pakistani
> families, aren't they?

> She was somewhat disturbed, then replied:
> - No, that's a stereotype. You have probably heard that from some-one
> and afterwards "confirmed" it with some casual examples.

> End of conversation. I was left to my thoughts. What could have made
> this bright young woman deny such a blatant reality with such a piece of
> bullshit?

If I had to guess, I would suspect that British racists tend to claim that
the Pakistani "immigrants" are driving "Real British" businesses out of
business, and so on.  Or else, that there's this stereotype that Pakistanis
are all shopkeepers, or something.  I suspect that she was responding from
the habits she had picked up in anti-racism work, where she would have
learned to challenge stereotypes of this sort.  That she seems to have done
it ineptly is something I won't bother commenting on further.

<< end of matters of substance.  Inconsequential material follows. >>
> "liberal" and guilty protestant conscience you throw at it, this

This 'protestant' bit is kind of interesting.  In some of Gary's material
in the last kind of days he gets stuck into the 'Catholic' conscience.
Maybe Louis or Nestor might like to tell us about the 'Jewish'
conscience...  :-)

I've always found it interesting how people's former religious backgrounds
shape their world-views, regardless of us all being notionally atheists.
I've sometimes felt like a bit of an oddity, being an Australian leftist
who is not an ex-Catholic.  Of course, there are lots of us around, it's
just that the ex-Catholics talk about religion so much.

> I guess I will never really understand the englishman.

It's easy enough - they're kind of like Americans.  :-)

Alan Bradley
alanb at elf.brisnet.org.au
(whose ancestors were liberally scattered from Ireland to the Ukraine...)

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