Those Obnoxious Americans

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Americans should spend more time actively learning about our—and our neighbors'—origins through the vehicle of travel. It's fun, the food is usually great, and you come home a more compassionate and empathetic community member.

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In all seriousness though, it really is amazing to see where we come from—it gives us a feeling of importance. So instead of just taking a DNA test, staring at statistics, then putting the file away with old Verizon Wireless bills, let this be a starting point. Get out in the world and see the cultures that made America the way it is today.

What I

You can see our multicultural ways manifest around the corner, around the county, around the country. Just think about it—even our dinner plates speak to our many identities have you ever eaten multiple ethnic cuisines in a single week—or day?


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This is a country built of rich cultures; we had better do our best to consciously recognize and enjoy them. I have learned many things during my travel endeavors so far, but by far I feel like my sense of nationalism has definitely been heightened.

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I have fallen in love with every country I have been to thus far, each unique in their own way. But, living in the USA for the majority of my life, I realize we truly do have just about everything right at our fingertips. Don't worry , I'll explain Currently, I am living in the Philippines, where when you go to the bathroom, you not only have to bring your own toilet paper, but you also must throw the paper in the trash not the toilet due to limited water treatment systems.

In the beginning, this was such a strange concept to me, since obviously! Fast forward to now when I'm two months down the road to living life like a Filipino, and it has just become an everyday habit in my life that no longer seems abnormal Sorry mom, when I come home I may be fighting this force of habit for a little while. You want Thai? Order it quickly from your phone and you'll be slurping noodles in 30 minutes.

Dying to have that latest album? Buy now and listen instantly. Our culture is obsessed with convenience and accessibility—and we don't realize how fortunate we are to have access to so many things so quickly. Some places I've traveled to, men and women blatantly do not have equal rights. I have been places where there truly is a hierarchy entirely based on gender, and yet it never ceases to surprise me.

We often look at the culture from the surface level and begin to create stereotypes based on our observations, rather than our experiences. At home, China already has a problem with street defecation, which dovetails nicely with the endemic public-spitting problem that makes most visitors openly retch thankfully, open-retching is also socially permissible. It seems that, when they go abroad, certain members — not all of them, it must be said — of the Chinese populous are taking that problem with them. Chinese visitors to the US are apparently going to rise by percent.

Or maybe they just used the foreign currency to wipe their arses with. In Thailand, the tourist invasion has been a political issue ever since a low-budget Chinese film called Lost In Thailand created a mini-boom in Chiang Mai tours. Chinese tourists also often stop in the middle of busy intersections — just to argue among themselves about directions.

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Some hotel and guesthouse operators are turning them away because they say Chinese tourists often rent a room for two, but stay overnight in a group of four or five. In the Maldives, one hotel started taking kettles out of the rooms of Chinese tourists, because they kept using them to boil instant noodles in.


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    What I "Hate" about the US itself

    This behaviour that typifies Americans abroad is usually described by others as loud and obnoxious. You may wonder "Are these Americans themselves aware of their behaviour?


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    Awareness of how personal actions impact others seems to be a weak point for Americans in general. This translates to the perceived ignorant persona Americans abroad present.

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    We come from a cocoon where we are made to feel that the world revolves around us and although we pride ourselves in being a "melting pot" of cultures, identities and backgrounds, we are not very knowledgeable about the plights and issues or even existence of other nations unless they fall under the American radar.

    But then when we go abroad, we appear to act like we know everything and appear to want everyone around us to know that too. So where does this behaviour come from? Identifying the valued personality traits in American culture gives a clue as to why the perceived loud and obnoxious behaviour manifests in Americans abroad. For one, American culture emphasises the individual, and that connotes the uniqueness of each person. Because each person is unique, they have unique opinions and thoughts. So in order to have such unique interests represented, speaking your mind and speaking up are very important.


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