The American experience lived Worldwide

The American experience lived Worldwide

how the American way is lived and praised worldwide

Every American child grows up thinking they live in the best country in the world, and that probably has a lot to do with the whole world knowing that the United States is the best country in the world. America does not lead the world in science, or math, or engineering, not even in democracy. However, Americans ranks number one in confidence. If Americans have not reached the credentials to be considered the best than why is it implanted in every American that we are.

Mostly it has to do with how our culture is the homogeneous culture that rules the globe . This culture can be divided by three factors, what you see, what you want to do , and how you expect life to be. This can be broken down through the division of Hollywood and Bollywood. How our government is conducted and what opportunities are available to you.

A stereotypical American day starts with an alarm clock letting you know you can snooze it for another twenty minutes. Followed by breakfast, which includes most of the food pyramid; bacon, cereal, fresh fruit, pancakes, eggs, granola- you name it. It is then followed by a bus ride to high school where you're either the stereotypical nerd or the popular girl everyone hates but wants to be like, or the cool kid who plays the guitar. You are educated and fed and encouraged to follow your dreams. Followed by a nice family dinner where everyone is happy without a worry and get to retire to a perfect slumber. If you are growing up in a third world country where you have to walk for three hours to get to school, eat a bowl of rice a day -if you're lucky- and know that you are the loser of globalization, your dream life is that represented in American culture. Wasting goods is not an option in developing countries, while food always goes to waste in the common American home.

The global culture has become Americanized due to its popularity in the film industry. Hollywood has depicted a frame that labels Americans as care free, adventurous people. A common tv show would show people working for a short period of time and enjoying the best part of life and spending time with friends. Bollywood in the other hand is not part of the monoculture. Even thought it is still a respectable film industry that is seen by millions, not enough people admire or find it as amusing as as Hollywood films. Bombs and explosions attract viewers more than the same traditional dance shown in every Indian movie. People see these movies and dream of a life where excitement and thrill drive human interaction. If you are living in a third world country the idea that drinking water can come from a refrigerator door is so advance for you that it's inability to obtain it makes you worship that idea.

The American monoculture also benefits other cultures by raising the expectations on how life should be lived. Part of being an American is the ability to maintain yourself clean. When an American is not properly dressed or is deemed dirty, they often take shame and try to fix themselves in order to be be deemed presentable. This part of our culture can be seen in the dramatic cultural change in Hong Kong. When McDonalds took over the world they also spread American standards across borders. In the City of Hong Kong, McDonald's bathrooms were still expected to maintain the clean American look- even if it was not the norm or expectation. This made McDonalds stand out and force other local restaurants to increase their hygienic practices in order to attract customers.

American sports are also part of the monoculture. Baseball, basketball, both American sports that is spreading worldwide. Granted it is not as popular as soccer it still holds a growing spot in culture interest . Although it is an American sport Japanese youth equally love and participate in it. This common pattern crosses cultures and language barrier. Much of its contribution should be credited to films and celebrities that Americans idolize. We encourage democracy through our journalistic and media practices. Take for example South Korea who in the 1990’s had strict publishing rules. Where it was not acceptable to criticize politicians, and such news would be censored and scripted. That change during the turn of the century and boy bands became the worlds obsession, naturally some Sourh Korean boy bands formed and rocked the nation. Since celebrities shape the nations youth, journalist help those pop stars to moral standards. When that was published, journalist expanded and held their politicians to a higher moral standard. Their freedom of press was expanded and it all started with boy bands

The monoculture has the ability to change, it is clear that the current monoculture mirrors the American Culture. The liberties and lifestyle in America is something that everyone else strives to achieve. The wealth portrayed by the common American, or even the opportunity of achieving the American dream pushes our culture to be number one.

Cover Image Credit: Smith, Candace. “Boy Bands of the 1990s to 2000s.” NY Daily News, NEW YORK DAILY NEWS, 3 Nov. 2015,

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No, I Don't Have To Tell You I'm Trans Before Dating You

Demanding trans people come out to potential partners is transphobic.

In 2014, Jennifer Laude, a 26-year-old Filipina woman, was brutally murdered after having sex with a U.S. marine. The marine in question, Joseph Scott Pemberton, strangled her until she was unconscious and then proceeded to drown her in a toilet bowl.

Understandably, this crime triggered a lot of outrage. But while some were outraged over the horrific nature of the crime, many others were outraged by a different detail in the story. That was because Jennifer Laude had done the unspeakable. She was a trans woman and had not disclosed that information before having sex with Pemberton. So in the minds of many cis people, her death was the price she paid for not disclosing her trans status. Here are some of the comments on CNN's Facebook page when the story broke.

As a trans person, I run into this attitude all the time. I constantly hear cis people raging about how a trans person is "lying" if they don't come out to a potential partner before dating them. Pemberton himself claimed that he felt like he was "raped" because Laude did not come out to him. Even cis people that fashion themselves as "allies" tend to feel similar.

Their argument is that they aren't not attracted to trans people, so they should have a right to know if a potential partner is trans before dating them. These people view transness as a mere physical quality that they just aren't attracted to.

The issue with this logic is that the person in question is obviously attracted to trans people, or else they wouldn't be worried about accidentally going out with one. So these people aren't attracted to trans people because of some physical quality, they aren't attracted to trans people because they are disgusted by the very idea of transness.

Disgust towards trans people is ingrained in all of us from a very early age. The gender binary forms the basis of European societies. It establishes that there are men and there are women, and each has a specific role. For the gender binary to have power, it has to be rigid and inflexible. Thus, from the day we are born, we are taught to believe in a very static and strict form of gender. We learn that if you have a penis, you are a man, and if you have a vagina, you are a woman. Trans people are walking refutations of this concept of gender. Our very existence threatens to undermine the gender binary itself. And for that, we are constantly demonized. For example, trans people, mainly women of color, continue to be slaughtered in droves for being trans.

The justification of transphobic oppression is often that transness is inherently disgusting. For example, the "trans panic" defense still exists to this day. This defense involves the defendant asking for a lesser sentence after killing a trans person because they contend that when they found out the victim was trans, they freaked out and couldn't control themselves. This defense is still legal in every state but California.

And our culture constantly reinforces the notion that transness is undesirable. For example, there is the common trope in fictional media in which a male protagonist is "tricked" into sleeping with a trans woman. The character's disgust after finding out is often used as a punchline.

Thus, not being attracted to trans people is deeply transphobic. The entire notion that someone isn't attracted to a group of very physically diverse group of people because they are trans is built on fear and disgust of trans people. None of this means it is transphobic to not be attracted to individual trans people. Nor is it transphobic to not be attracted to specific genitals. But it is transphobic to claim to not be attracted to all trans, people. For example, there is a difference between saying you won't go out with someone for having a penis and saying you won't go out with someone because they're trans.

So when a cis person argues that a trans person has an obligation to come out to someone before dating them, they are saying trans people have an obligation to accommodate their transphobia. Plus, claiming that trans people are obligated to come out reinforces the idea that not being attracted to trans people is reasonable. But as I've pointed out, not being attracted to trans people supports the idea that transness is disgusting which is the basis for transphobic oppression.

The one scenario in which I would say a trans person should disclose their trans status is if they are going to have sex with someone and are unsure if their partner is attracted to whatever genitals they may have. In that case, I think it's courteous for a trans person to come out to avoid any awkwardness during sex. But even then, a trans person isn't "lying" if they don't come out and their partner is certainly not being "raped."

It is easy to look at the story of Jennifer Laude and claim that her death was due to the actions of one bigot. But it's more complicated than that. Pemberton was the product of a society that told him that disgust towards trans people was reasonable and natural. So when he found out that he accidentally slept with a trans woman, he killed her.

Every single cis person that says that trans people have to come out because they aren't attracted to trans people feeds into the system that caused Jennifer Laude's death. And until those cis people acknowledge their complicity in that system, there will only be more like Jennifer Laude.

SEE ALSO: Yes, You Absolutely Need To Tell Someone You're Trans Before Dating

Cover Image Credit: Nats Getty / Instagram

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