Tuesday, June 14, 2011

And Wouldn't that be a Shame

I try to shy away from chains, and it's really changed the way I look at a place like Target, which I used to think of as a "Wal-Mart for picky people." My last visit to the bulls-eye boutique left me feeling irritated with humanity after watching miserable people waddle around ignoring everyone around them and what kind of world do we live in where all these middle-aged people are working at Target?

At least they're neutral on gay marriage now.

There is one chain I do embrace, and that's Caribou Coffee. I can't help but love that homey atmosphere, and if you're thinking what a sell-out I am, hey, if Howard Zinn can love Dunkin' Donuts coffee, I can have this.

Anyway, one of the reasons I'm tight with the 'Bou is they do, sort of, have a political slant: a major shareholder in the company is a pro-Palestine bank.

I'm not anti-Israel, but I am anti-a lot of the things they do in the name of security and "freedom," which is pretty similar to many of my opinions on America. I like the idea of getting a good cup o' joe and supporting people who want their own country back after it was sliced in two by England.

Pictured above: foreign policy

I understand that Palestine didn't, strictly speaking, have to launch a war against Israel to try to get their land back, and that terrorist actions aren't cricket, but I think America should have a little sympathy for people who decide to fight back against those who don't allow them representation in their government. *Insert belabored comparison to American Revolution here.*

I like to think that when I go to Caribou, I'm helping out my Palestinian friends (yes, I do have Palestinian friends). It's an easy way within the system to maybe convince myself I'm affecting a little change.

Sometimes that change needs to be a little more radical. If you recall my recent article on Americans being all for Egyptians taking control of their government, you'll see people are ready for the idea of bucking the system to get democracy.

Not so surprisingly, the EU doesn't feel this way about Palestine unilaterally declaring themselves a state. They're worried it will "
cause disturbances of the kind we've seen in neighboring Arab countries." Riddle me this: what kind of world do we live in where we deny people self-governance because it might inconvenience us, even when the means of reaching that governance is peaceful?

Libya is pretty much the only country in which the fight has come to blows, and the EU has no right to complain about that, so I suppose the only response is, it's ok to get democracy as long as it doesn't inconvenience the West.

Sorry for answering my own question, but the kind of world where this makes sense is the kind of world where people who should be able to save for retirement are wearing red polo shirts and stocking shelves. Maybe they have more in common with the Palestinians than they think.

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