Yet another weird SF fan

I'm a mathematician, a libertarian, and a science-fiction fan. Common sense? What's that?

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Yet another weird SF fan

Wednesday, June 09, 2004

What If Something Happens to North America?

Rich Lowry, while discussing “The Day After Tomorrow,” wrote:

    The makers of "The Day After Tomorrow" revel in the prospect of our civilization being brought low, humiliated for its sins. In the film, desperate Americans flee illegally across the Mexican border to escape the weather cataclysm. Get the irony? After the disaster, the Dick Cheney-like vice president apologizes, essentially for the fact that his country has been running a modern economy lo these many years: "We were wrong. I was wrong." Even with America's economy destroyed, even with millions dead, there is a bright spot. At the end, an astronaut comments from far above our frozen continent: "The air has never been so clear." All the SUVs are buried under the tundra!
After reading that, I started wondering … what if some catastrophe caused Americans to become a wandering people similar to the Jews? There's already a resemblance between antisemitism and anti-Americanism.

But wait, there's more. The usual response to unwanted minorities is to say “send them back where they came from.” This was tried with Jews, except there is disagreement as to where we came from. According to Amos Oz:

In a recent interview, the liberal novelist Amos Oz confessed he's haunted by his father's observation that, before the Holocaust, European graffiti read, “JEWS TO PALESTINE,” only to be transformed in our time into, “JEWS OUT OF PALESTINE.” The message to Jews, noted Oz: “Don't be here and don't be there. That is, don't be.”
If Jews are part European and part Semite, we'd have to be dismembered to go back where we came from … and a large fraction of Americans are just as mixed.

On the other hand, we Jews got used to being a wandering people …


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