I just got through reading Martin Horton's reply and clarification regarding my misconceived view of Amsterdam. I couldn't agree more about what he said and apologize fully to him and his country for my ignorance and stereotypes. I recognize that he understood where I was coming from but my comments may have been a little harsh. I admittedly know little, if anything, about Amsterdam except for what a handful of peers have told me about it.
Stereotypes travel fast. I did not mean to imply that all people in Holland participate in wild parties and orgies or that Italy is full of mobsters or that all Latin American countries view risqué soap operas. I was merely acknowledging that these factors are present in these areas of the world and that America is not the only country that should have provoked the ire of that monster God of the Bible. My apologies to anyone I may have offended.
It's ironic the things we perceive about other countries. I have been taught through society and the media that America is a greedy, arrogant nation. Not everyone in America is this way. In the same sense, not everyone in the Middle East is an Islamic fundamentalist who wants to annihilate everyone in the Western world with airplanes and germ warfare. Even more importantly, not all Christian or Islamic fundamentalists want to control the government and shove their theology down our throats. I think it is crucial that we remind ourselves of this often. It's important to look at the bigger picture and not focus too much on a small minority that misrepresents the whole. As humans, we are flawed horribly in this realm of perceptions. We need to remind each other that there are many, many different ways of looking at life and the different people of this world.
If we don't educate ourselves about our differences and how they don't always represent the group they belong to, I fear there will be many more Osama bin Ladens, Adolf Hitlers, and Pat Robertsons leading our world. That, I contend, is not a misperception on my part.
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