We have actually started writing final papers and studying for final exams. Which means that in a couple weeks when we have finished all of these things we will be 2/3rds of the way done with the program. Then we will be moving onto independent study, which is wild because in someways it feels like we’ve been here for a very long time but in the back of my mind I’m still pretty sure its still the end of August. That may have something to do with the fact that the weather here is very similar to Massachusetts in August.
Well, clearly, I am not doing my work right now because I am taking this time to procrastinate and share a funny anecdote. This has nothing to do with my own personal political views, I just feel obliged to report on what I’ve seen in Sri Lanka as a response to the US election. The Sri Lankan press really doesn’t need to worry about being labeled as biased, so they have decided to make this election a battle of good vs. evil, but it is not as one would have guessed, Obama vs. McCain, no one has any idea who McCain is. It’s always Obama vs ‘that Alaskan woman,’ as I always hear her refered to. When the debates show up on the Sinhalese news, which I clearly don’t understand, but I can see Obama and McCain, my host father always just says Obama is fighting with that man again.
I’ve seen quite a few articles that have made Obama out to be the second coming of Christ, or as I’m in Sri Lanka a Bodhisattva I guess. However, the other day we all gathered around the Sri Lankan paper, The Island, and read an article that had a huge picture of Sarah Palin and then in huge letters it warned, THIS WOMAN COULD BE THE NEXT US PREZ. Now I don’t know how the article just totally dismissed McCain but he was a non-factor. It was just future president She-devil, Palin.
Now once again these are not my own views, that is just actually how the article presented her. They called her things like a gun totting flesh provider, which once again this is a Buddhist country so killing for food is pretty much the same as just being a straight out murderer. Then they said something like she hated human rights, and then something about her being an egg cracking mother. I guess in the past they thought that mothers should never crack eggs because of some symbolism about taking the lives of an infant.
Anyways, on the next page was a cartoon of Palin with guns and drills slung across her back pushing a baby carriage and then an arrow pointing down at the baby said McCain, so maybe they just figured if he got elected she was going to push him off a cliff, I don’t know. However, the best part was the end of the article where it just basically said if Obama doesn’t become president it will be the apocalypse but sometime US voters are to “obtuse” and so then they might not vote for good over evil. Also, I’ve heard, however, that US newspapers are showing articles quite similar to this, but I just thought it was funny here to see how into US politics the Sri Lankans are, and also just funny to see what a press that doesn’t have to worry about shrouding their bias will say.
I just remembered another absurd political anecdote. The other day I was late, as usual, so I was eating my breakfast in a hurry, when I heard the TV shout, “Americawa!” Instinctively, I looked up expecting to see another showdown of Obama vs. McCain dubbed over in Sinhalese, instead I just saw a picture of Palin. Then I saw a shot of the ancestry.com website, followed by a clip of Princess Diana. No ones was in the room to translate so I stopped paying attention when I heard, “Brad Pitt.” I looked up to see the screen split in two, with a picture of Obama next to a picture of Brad Pitt. Then I went to school, thoroughly confused.
Ok, thats all I wanted to say today, so I’m going to get back to my homework and hopefully not get distracted again by US politicians.