Jack is still covering for Wendy who is writing frantically to meet deadlines – –
The current concentration on equal rights and treatment got me thinking back to how I’ve related over my life with folk from different cultures and colors.
I grew up in a small town in Scotland which, when I was a bairn, had really only two minorities – Italians who owned the fish and chip shops and ice cream parlors, and Poles who ran the barber shops. There was one black guy called Gillette (a French name) and that was pretty much it. I don’t remember any anti-immigrant sentiments, although I’m sure they must have existed.
Later as I entered adulthood the first Chinese restaurant opened and my ‘gang’ were regulars. We became friendly with the owner and staff and would often spend time with them after hours.
Even later the first Indian restaurant opened and the same gang became good friends with them too.
We were all mostly ‘folkies’ and sang ‘We Shall Overcome’ regularly, so that tells you something about our political sympathies.
But when Wendy and I married and she came to Scotland she abruptly saw things differently. She encountered a good deal of anti-Americanism and there could be many reasons for that. Regardless of the reasons, it happened and it wasn’t about color or even language!
It’s about planting fear of the ‘other’ in fertile ground. Here in the US it’s been about Poles, Irish, Italians, Hispanics, Catholics, Muslims and on and on.
But in Scotland twenty-five years ago – – –
I have known two Scottish policemen throughout the years; one was a bully all his life and the other was a perfect gentleman. So I don’t doubt that there are good and bad just as in society generally.
We’re a’ Jock Tamson’s Bairns – aye, maybe – – –