Last week I wrote about all the things I miss about living in America. But that left me feeling very unbalanced.
There are a lot of things I absolutely DO NOT miss about living there too. There are some things I really hate about America. So, this week’s blog is the yang to last week’s yin—my counterbalance.
There are a lot of things that I’m able to see more clearly now that I am an arm’s length from America. Sometimes you are too close to see what’s right in front of you.
But before you get all your panties in a bunch, know this…
Disclaimer #1: Regardless of the title, I really do love America. This blog is not America bashing. I’m not anti-American. I will always be a proud American (just read my last blog post). But that doesn’t mean I love every bit of it. There is plenty to hate or strongly dislike. No country is perfect.
Disclaimer #2 When I say Americans, I’m clearly not talking about ALL Americans. I might not even be talking about a majority of them. But ya know the saying, there are always a few bad apples in the bunch? Well, I’m referring to those bad apples. Unfortunately, America has a record-breaking number of bad apples. And they are the loudest and most putrid of them all.
With that out of the way, here are the 8 things I hate about America.
I Hate How Far Political Correctness Has Gone
I am so over how politically correct the US has become. Here, if you are Chinese, White or Black, you will be called that White girl, or that Black guy. It’s not racist. It’s a description. No one is offended.
In Malaysia, a majority Muslim country, we can wish someone Merry Christmas, and if they aren’t Catholic, they don’t care, and they certainly aren’t insulted. Around Christmas, when Santa makes his rounds to the malls and hawker stalls, every Muslim, Buddhist, and Hindu kid is just as excited as the Catholic ones.
Now America has at least 64 terms for different gender identities, so we don’t offend anyone. 64. WTF! Have you heard the words Feminine-of-center, Graygender, Maverique, or Novigender? No? Me neither. If you want to learn about all 64 so you too can be ultra-PC, read this.
I Hate Politics. Period.
Ugg, where to begin with this one? It is a doozy, right?
Real talk, I’ve always hated politics. And most politicians. Even though I’ve never missed an election, I’ve never felt like any of my choices really had my back. I’ve always voted for the lesser of two evils.
Just because I’m living in another country doesn’t mean I can escape US politics. Quite the contrary.
I always try to avoid the topic of politics, but that is becoming increasingly more difficult nowadays. More people ask me about American politics now than when I lived in the US. In fact, I talk way more about it here.
I hate the two full years of horrible commercials about the presidential candidates. The constant attacking, the negative ugliness about each opponent – it’s disgusting. Especially when you know both idiots are spewing their bullshit lies just to get elected.
Here is it possible to turn it off. Now, I get to focus on the few months leading up to the elections and do the research I need before I vote. I’m not inundated with it on the media. It’s not shoved down my throat.
It is so sad that people are losing friends over politics. We are a country divided, and no one wants to reach across the line to work together. It’s my way or the highway. It’s black or white (wait…can I even say that anymore? Or am I not being PC?)
I Super-Duper Totally Hate the Violence
Right now, violence and rioting are spreading through the US like wildfires. There is an angry undercurrent in the US, and things are boiling over. And the so-called peaceful protests are anything but peaceful. It’s heartbreaking to watch, and it is undoubtedly at its most extreme. However, the US, especially the big cities, has never been known as a safe haven.
Even though there has always been violence in Chicago, it’s not like I was walking around scared for my life. But now that I’ve left, and live on a super safe island, I realize that taking precautions and looking over my shoulder was just normal for me there. It was part of my daily life.
There is a lot of gang violence in Chicago. But that doesn’t mean it only affects gang members – it spills over into all the neighborhoods, even the areas without gangs. We are seeing more accidental deaths of innocent people caught in the crossfire all the time.
Malaysia is very safe, especially Penang. The homicide rate in Chicago is more than double the rate in Malaysia.
I Hate the Keeping Up with the Joneses Mentality
Instead of people saving money, they are buying things. A big house with the perfect lawn so the neighbors can see just how nice their stuff is. New cars, new iPhones, the latest of everything.
Of course, there are people all over the world who buy the latest and greatest of everything.
In all of my travels, it seems like people in other countries are happy with what they have and aren’t always pining away for what their friends have.
More people here could not give a rats-ass about all that stuff. It’s not a race to see who can have more, and people are genuinely happy without all the frills.
I Hate All the Rules and Regulations & How it is so Litigious
Not gonna lie, I kind of love the law-less-ness of Malaysia.
It’s not like it’s the Wild Wild West over here – that award goes to America right now.
But here, if you fall down on the sidewalk, it’s your fault. You can’t sue anyone. You fell, and it’s your fault – accept it. Don’t try to sue the city or the restaurant behind the sidewalk, pick up your feet, and take some responsibility. Americans rarely take responsibility for their actions or inactions and happily blame someone else.
When we first moved here, we saw an Aussie woman fall. She wasn’t hurt, just embarrassed. She started screaming at the woman who owned the café. The local woman stopped what she was doing and said, “You fell. You stupid. You open eyes, you no fall!”
And that, my friends, was not only refreshing but hilarious, and it stuck with me all this time. And seriously, no truer words have been spoken.
I know rules and regs are there for a reason. But suing everyone for your mistakes isn’t ok. Don’t even get me started on ambulance chasers.
Some rules are meant to be broken, like red lights. Ok, maybe not those. But if they didn’t make you wait at a red light for 3 minutes each cycle, maybe people wouldn’t plow through them all the time.
I Hate the Sense of Entitlement
Honestly, I really don’t want to hear about how tough it is for people in the US. You can whine all you want but travel outside of America, and you’ll see what tough really is.
Many Americans don’t know what real poverty looks like.
Some think they are too good to work at a fast-food joint; they deserve a better job. They deserve to earn $50k just out of college without any experience. Some Americans feel entitled like they are owed something. Sorry Buddy, you aren’t special, no one owes you anything. Work hard like the rest of us.
I’m not trying to be insensitive and do realize that some people are in terrible situations. I am absolutely not referring to them.
I’m talking about the assholes that are perfectly capable of going out and getting a job but would rather claim unemployment.
I Hate the Lack of a Work-Life Balance
There is an obsession with work that leaves little time for anything else. We relish in being busy and think of that as a high standard of achievement.
Most people don’t leave their work at the office when they go home at night or on the weekend. It’s a badge of success to work extra hours and be soooo busy that you never truly leave work at all.
People have to work longer hours to get things done and to pay for their increase in debt. There aren’t enough hours in the day to get it all done, so we are forced to work longer, which creates more stress.
I don’t miss the stupid unaffordability of healthcare.
Full stop. That is it. I could go on, but really, why?
The Last Word
I don’t want this blog to leave you with a bad taste in your mouth. It was a lot of hate and not easy for me to write.
I haven’t turned into some hateful she-devil. I’m the same sunshiny petunia I’ve always been. But there is some downright ugly shit happening in the world and too loud to ignore.
Anything you hate or dislike about your home country? Tell me in the comments below. By the way, I really love comments, so have at it.