13 July 2009

A Few Things

  • When will we know the names?  Word from the Hague is that the Waki list will remain under wraps.  I have said before, the names need to come to light.  We are getting closer to two years since the election violence.  Still, those who were most responsible for inciting violence have not had to answer for their actions.  Hopefully the names will be released soon, but with a year to get a tribunal in order it seems that it will be some time.
  • The whole Michael Jackson death spectacle was strange to see from here.  First of all, it was equally as notable in Kenya as it was in the US.  I watched a dance special on NTV to the music of MJ.  They had specials in the newspapers, radio and television.  Conversations moved towards his passing as he was held up on an Obama like pedestal.  On the American side, it looked as if all stopped.  It was certainly the case here.  I cannot understand the connection that people feel to a man who lived so far away, but it exists.  Maybe it is important to have an escape.  For so many here that is through music. 
  • The MJ hoopla makes sense through the lens of the comment last week.  One of the teachers from the school where Michael and I spoke told us that America is “heaven.”  American exceptionalism has always seemed to be a silly concept in my opinion.  I have always felt it conceited to make such a claim.  When one puts himself at the top, then the rest are inherently inferior in his view.  Since President Wilson, this view has been held by many.  In the past election, McCain tried to demean Obama by criticizing his support for the concept.  Regardless of the theory, American does have an exceptional place in minds of the people throughout the world.  Somehow, people think that America can solve all of the world’s problems.  Here, people strive to go to America to find heaven on earth.  Hearing someone say this made me feel like pulling an Adam Sandler and shake the mans cheeks saying “Do not go!”