Assigned Reading

Russia is not Jamaica. Maureen Dowd, NY Times columnist

As Michael Specter, the New Yorker writer who has written extensively about Russia, observed: “There was a brief five-year period when we could get away with treating Russia like Jamaica — that’s over. Now we have to deal with them like grown-ups who have more nuclear weapons than anybody except us.”

We will have to examine this some more, later. Do you find the comparison offensive? Does America deal with Jamaica like a grown up?
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5 thoughts on “Assigned Reading

  1. It is insulting but hardly news, isn’t it? Goes right back to the Manifest Destiny and Munroe doctrines, some 150 years old now. The “getting away with” part of the statement is certainly revealing. And it is rather questionable that “national adulthood” should be measured in terms of one’s possession of nukes, weapons that could destroy human civilization in its entirety. Meanwhile, I’m trying to make sense of why Jamaica was singled out to represent the global “small fry” and cannot help but linking it to the hullabaloo about Usain Bolt’s celebrations. While others have also been involved (such as, appallingly, Jacques Rogge), the controversy started with an American sports commentator. What are they saying then, that those Jamaican upstarts should accept their symbolic victories with a sense of humility appropriate to their size and world status?

  2. i think it’s a role that Jamaica (via some Jamaicans) has played to more than once. the little friendly (read harmless) dreadlocked teddy bear of a country which is like Sancho Panzo to the US’s Don Quixote. remember the Red Stripe ad campaign some years ago that had a licky licky looking tame character who kept popping up here and there. to their credit enough Jamaicans objected to this stepnfechit character (as Marlon James would call him) that the campaign was cancelled…

    but yes Veerle could be right in terms of the timing. how dare this little upstart mongrel beat us at our own game on such a visibly global stage?

  3. Yes,indeed, the comparison is definitely offensive and odious.As a consequence,this writer seriously takes umbrage with this absurd and somewhat grudgeful comparison.Quite frankly,such a characterization was uncalled for, and the sole objective was to slap Jamaica in its face, and supposedly an attempt to put us in our so called place, during our period/moment of glory and euphoria for its brilliant,bold and audacious athletic and global super star Mr. Usain “LIGHTNING” Bolt and his celebrations during the 100m race and post race.I concur totally with the sentiments and perspectives echoed by Veerle.This comparison of treating Russia like Jamaica is nothing short of the arrogance of power,juxtaposed with American ethnocentrism,white privilege,the psychology of entitlement,bad-mindedness and jealousy as a consequence of Jamaica’s stellar and scintillating performance and achievements in the Beijing Olympics,where the marquee and blue ribbon events that are/were traditionally stamped USA have been denied them by the BLACK GREEN and GOLD. Indeed, the relationships between states are not necessarily symmetric and in most instances are asymmetrical,specifically, when it comes to small and micro states, as a consequence of the political,economic,military, and historical configuration of power. But guess what,the world is constantly changing and such asymmetrical configurations of power in various spheres of life are not absolutes.So,guess what, world dynamics are constantly and dialectically changing and influx.Consequently,Americans must realize, and be cognizant of the fact that this sense of hegemony and absolute dominance in various spheres and areas of life including sports are constantly under assault by various countries and regions of the world, including micro states such as Jamaica, as the world experiences a flattening. Certainly,such circumstances,situations and experiences are occurring as we speak with respect to the rise of Asia and the Pacific century in terms of economic growth.This competitiveness is also inevitable in various sporting disciplines, and Jamaica among other countries, are now realizing and experiencing this with respect to her victorious performances at Beijing.The American sense of dominance and hegemony in all spheres of life is no longer, and it is full time that this be comprehended by various and sundry Americans, that the world is changing right in front of their very faces.KUDOS to the BLACK, GREEN and GOLD.We Jamaicans have an attitude, and if you do not like it, so be it.We little but we TALLAWAH!

  4. Mr. Jacques Rogge’s appalling and disheartning statements with respect to Mr. Usain “Lightning” Bolt suggests and totally indicates that he, Mr. Rogge ,needs to be separated from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) post haste/instantaneously.

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