October 14, 1997
We have a confession to make. We've been holding it back a long time, but we're feeling so bad we just have to let our readers know: Here at the DO we are American white males.
Alas, we can't yet afford the surgical techniques that would allow us to remove the awful burdens of whiteness or maleness. But over the long weekend we did some soul-searching and decided that we would take the advice of multiculturalists and learn more from the world around us.
Of course, as all good college professors know, Americans are greedy, uncultured capitalist brutes, way behind on our donations to that august world body, the United Nations. Worst of all, we talk loudly and dress badly when dining out in Parisian restaurants.
In order to broaden our pitifully narrow perspective, we decided to take a trip around the world. Our Lear jet is low on fuel, so we traveled courtesy of CNN World News.
Being an Anglophile, we decided to start out in the land of our forefathers, merry old England. We were surprised to run into prime minister Tony Blair, who was in hasty retreat from Northern Ireland. He seemed a little unsettled from his visit, when housewives screamed "Traitor!" at him for his agreement to deal with Sinn Fein. Blair was forced to take cover from Protestant protesters during a visit to a shopping mall in Belfast.
We love the Brits, but we decided to retreat to nearby Belgium for a bit. We were shocked to find that Europe's governing city of Brussels had become home to Italian mafia, Russian and Turkish gangs, Chinese triads, and Colombian cartels. Well, we guess that's why they call it an "international" city.
We decided that we weren't quite chic enough for Europe, so we headed south for Algeria. Once in Algiers we found that the international community and media is finally beginning to notice the fact that ruthless butchery of children and other innocents has become routine. The Armed Islamic Group has called the massacres an "offering to God." Makes American televangelists seem pretty harmless.
While we were so close we decided to visit Libya. There we ran into the two men who were responsible for blowing up Pan Am flight 103, killing 270 people. Despite the fact that the bombing occurred nine years ago, the two terrorists still remain free, under the protection of madman Moammar Gadhafi.
Since we were in the neighborhood we decided to drop by and visit our friends in Israel. We admit our interest was partly spurred by our typically greedy American desire to see the place where so many of our tax dollars went. The airport was really packed, mostly with terrorists who were being returned to their homes in exchange for two bungling Mossad agents. We just hope that if we botch an assassination attempt our employers will also sacrifice national security to get us back.
There's certainly lots to see, do, and learn in Africa. In Kenya for instance, we wanted to learn more about the accepted traditions of wife-beating and polygamy. It seems that Agnes Siyiankoi is challenging the legality of wife-beating and the Maasai tradition of treating women as property. Siyiankoi's father married her off at age 18 in exchange for three cows.
While we were in Africa we hoped to learn more about feminism from the former wife of South African icon Nelson Mandela. Unfortunately, Madikizela Mandela (aka Winnie) was busy in court refuting the many allegations that she kidnapped and murdered political opponents.
We were running out of time so we headed over to South America's largest city, Sao Paulo, before returning home. Brazilians are getting fired up for the forthcoming visit of evil American white male poster boy, Bill Clinton. Brazilians were apparently incensed over a U.S. Department of Commerce publication which described corruption as "endemic" to Brazil. The wording was changed to describe corruption in Brazil as only being "widespread."
Speaking of corruption, we had hoped to have time to visit South Korea, where president Kim Young-sam's son Kim Hyun-chul has just been found guilty of bribery and tax evasion charges. There's just so much to see, and so little time. We'll do another tour soon, and then we'll bring back suggestions for all the ways in which our evil empire could be improved.
And in exchange for all the good things we can import from the rest of the world, we plan on exporting all of the members of the American Trial Lawyers Association.
Quote of the Day!"After four years at the United Nations, I sometimes yearn for the peace and tranquility of a political convention."
-- Adlai Stevenson, "The New York Times," August 14, 1964
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