A CASE TO LEARN GEOPOLITICS

Ever wonder why I heckle at Americans doing THE AMAZING RACE?  Read on.

Two things I can count on in the spring: THE AMAZING RACE and NCAA MARCH MADNESS. 

TAR is a great lesson in culture and geography while MARCH MADNESS is the ultimate soap opera: so many upsets, so many Cinderella stories all leading up to the Final Four.  Everybody dances, and unlike NBA, it’s win or go home.

TAR shows us how geographically challenged some of the contestants are.  Given mispronunciation of names are a given, but they should have an inkling of the challenge country’s culture.  And sometimes it’s fun to watch them being exposed to Holi in India or making dentures for the villagers in Thailand or even cow counting in Argentina.

But, as I said, it is a lesson in geography that is needed.

Which brings me to last night’s (as I write this) game between Kansas State and Southern Mississippi.  

I, like most of the nation that finds themselves glued to the dance, was enjoying it with a bowl of popcorn and iced tea.  Following the ticker on the games on TNT, TBS and TruTV since I no longer had cable.  The dance was great.

Until it got ugly.

Freshman player Angel Rodriguez was at the foul line shooting his free throws.  If the band is situated at the goal, it’s common for them to move back and forth to distract the shooting player.  But what came out of the mouths of the band was the chant, “Where’s your green card?  Where’s your green card?”  Not only was this chant racist; it also showed how ignorant the Southern Miss band members are.

They tried to make Rodriguez out to be illegal…but Rodriguez is Puerto Rican, a FULL-FLEDGED U.S. CITIZEN.  This comes on the heels of Republican Rick Santorum going to Puerto Rico winning their delegates and later, granting an interview to El Verano saying that if Puerto Ricans want their country to be a state, they should be an English-speaking state-not knowing that the island nation has had English and Spanish as their official languages since 1993 and it is the U.S. government that want to make it a state, but the people voted statehood down..

Adding insult to injury, Martha Saunders of Southern Miss, issued an apology to Angel Rodriguez but they spelled his name wrong (spelling it with a ‘q’).  

I want to know what the NCAA and Southern Miss is going to do about it.  Where was the bandleader in all this?  Were there other students involved in this heckling?  

And with Republican governors that want to do away with teaching Hispanic culture in schools, last night’s game should be a wake-up call.  Not only are you breeding hate, you’re shortchanging the children in experiencing the culture and knowledge of different peoples that are part of Hispanic culture or any culture that is non-Eurocentric.  You are doing a disservice to your students.

On a lighter note, Southern Miss will no longer dance this year-they were eliminated by Kansas State.

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