Londoners 2 Percent Less Polite About Terrorism Following Bombings
August 31, 2005 Issue 41•35
LONDON—Findings released Monday by Britain's Home Office indicate that politeness among Londoners has dipped 2 percent since the July public-transit bombings. "Terrorist bombers? Well, I say—good day to them—a tip of my hat to them, indeed, and may they take their leave of our green and pleasant land," said Andrew Capper of Surbiton. "Far be it from me to pass judgment, as I've never met the chaps myself—and goodness knows I'm not without error—but I should think that a few of these terrorists have behaved in a manner that can only be described as rather less than gentlemanly, if I do say so myself, may it please you, good sir." The Home Office cites post-traumatic stress in the sharp decline in manners, the worst since the 4 percent drop during the Blitz of 1940.
Ah, it's funny because it's true. Coincided with the BBC news this morning doing some interviews in Louisiana. This one woman said, "Katrina! Well... she won the battle, but we won the war." And that suddenly struck me as such an American thing to say. Billions of dollars worth of damage, bodies floating in the water, no power or water for weeks; what exactly about that situation makes you think you've won anything? Americans always have to win at everything; even when they've lost they think they've won.
Not "they". Oops. "We," I mean "we" think we've won. Uh-oh...
P.S. I notice reports of quite a bit of looting and even shootings going on, which doesn't surprise me. If the same thing had happened in England, would the British be shooting each other over bananas and stereo systems? Methinks not, but whose to say?