My Place

Soon my time at Black Vatican U must come to an end. I know - I've said that before, but this time, I mean it. Once this thesis is defended and I've taught a class or two, I will have mined this place for all it has to offer me, aside from future letters of recommendation. As I plan for this departure, I am troubled. I don't know where to go.

You see, I have plenty of experience in living where I am not wanted. Not me personally, but me as a liberal, a Democrat, a non-Christian, a queer ally, and one of those damned elitist academic types. After almost a decade of being a politcal and cultural outsider, I'd like to find a place to live where my views are closer to the median.

I want to teach, either at the secondary or post-secondary level, without having to constantly pander to fundies and fanatics. I want my taxes to primarily fund social programs that build local communities, and not the defense budget. I want to live in a place that respects and supports the arts, multiculturalism, and the practice of the world's religions. This place should have ethnic diversity, and it should be celebrated. I have no idea where this place is.

In fact, I've been thinking for years now that this place is no longer in the U.S. Throughout my adult life I've been consistently stepping to the Left, while much of America has been stumbling to the Right. Even as we elected a black Democrat to be POTUS I knew it was too little, too late. As the GOP and the Teabaggers shriek about Socialism and Fascism, I find that he's nowhere near as far Left as I'd like. I want him to socialize medicine, empower labor, regulate the hell out of banking, and put the nuts of the corporations in a vice. I'm not just marching to a different drummer here - I'm in a completely different parade.

When I try to match an actual country to my fantasies about this place, I always end up looking at places like Sweden or Holland. Do I really have to learn a new language and move overseas just to live among my kind?

6 comments:

Mayren said...

the answer is most likely - yes.
It would also take having your degrees translated and exchanged for their international equivalent in order to be certified as a teacher there, which may require that you take another year of classes to fulfill requirements.

----
I'm sure you'll land on your feet wherever
you may go. I think if you dig deep enough
you'll find that towns surrounding decent
but more private colleges to be a better
feel but not as challenging.

College towns in general at least give you
some kind of scholarly atmosphere.

Perhaps after you have taken your pilgrimage
to Tibet and come back you will find your
perspective?

Amber said...

Ashland, OR embraces the arts (it's one of our major industries), multiculturalism and all the world's religions. And your sister lives there, so you know it's cool!

His Sinfulness said...

Thanks ladies. I am just really fed the fuck up with the conservatives around here. Well, around everywhere in the U.S. actually...

Andrew said...

As much as I would like to tell you to dig in your heels and work for your democratic ideals my personal experience in that realm isn't always the most encouraging. To leave this country to its fate is a sad alternative. You say you want to teach secondary or post secondary without interference from right? There are places in this country you can do that and as I see myself beginning the long process of settling I'm looking for them too. Leaving the USA is not something I can do. Even if its changing my goals and reassessing my ability to enact the type of government I've never been serious about flying the white flag and getting out. Its a matter of pride and determination, this is my country, I'm going to make it better for the next generation. I'm not going to judge you or tell you what to do, but I am going to tell you what my opinion is. Best of luck whatever you choose to do.

His Sinfulness said...

I don't view it as surrender, Andrew - it's more a question of finding the right niche. Ducks don't live in the desert...

Raksha said...

SERIOUSLY YOU NEED TO COME TO GERMANY WITH ME. We can start our own Black Vatican Expat Enclave! It'll be awesome.

Plus, Germany's not that hard to learn for English speakers....

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