Huggers Wanted

31 05 2009

I was watching a news report that talked about how some schools are banning hugs, or hugging among students. According to this news report it is all the new rage… hugging is new?

That was one of those times when I felt the Alien that I am. I come from a planet where we show affection. I used to hug and kiss (in the cheek) all my friends since elementary school (that is as far as I can remember). We hug and kiss our friends, specially if we haven’t seen them for a couple of days. With family we do, every time we see each other.

I guess the way we show affection is pretty much cultural. I have had to get used to not kissing and hugging people here, and when I visit my planet I feel awkward the first couple of days, when everybody wants to hug me. Then it all comes back and I feel that warmth of the embrace, the affection, and since I am the one outside the planetary circle, the hugs for me tend to be longer, as if we were trying to make up for lost time, or as my Mom would put it, “recharging my batteries”.

Have you heard about the Free Hugs Campain…if not here it is

 

Hey you don’t know what you are missing, hug somebody today!!

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Who is a real African-American?

21 05 2009

I came across this news story and could not believe it, a man got expelled from a university for claiming to be African-American. This is absurd!!!

What was the problem you may ask, well he is white. This guy is a white man from Africa who became a US citizen, how should he call himself? In this era of hyphenated nationalities or ethnicities what is right and what is wrong?  Who is a real African American, a Black American or an African that became American? Who makes the rules? 

Paulo Serodio says he is.

Born and raised in Mozambique and now a naturalized U.S. citizen, Serodio, 45, has filed a lawsuit against a New Jersey medical school, claiming he was harassed and ultimately suspended for identifying himself during a class cultural exercise as a “white African-American.”

After Serodio labeled himself as a white African-American, another student said she was offended by his comments and that, because of his white skin, was not an African-American.

According to the lawsuit, Serodio was summoned to Duncan’s office where he was instructed “never to define himself as an African-American … because it was offensive to others and to people of color for him to do so.”

You can read the rest of the story here

His was instructed to never define himself as what he is African-American, because the label here in the US has certain parameters that never accounted for other possibilities. African Americans can only be black? How about a black person from Europe, that comes to America, could they be European American? they certainly do not have the African American culture. How about a person of Asian descent, that is also Latino? What can they call themselves, they look Asian but have the Latino Culture. It is 2009, we have an “African American” president. The world is getting smaller by the minute. Isn’t it time to open our minds and our hearts and stop the bickering?