Scene in a restaurant:
A woman talks to me, I answer, and she detects an accent. “Where are you from?” “I’m from the Netherlands–I’m Dutch.” “Oh wow! I’m Dutch, too!” I don’t detect an accent, but I’m slightly hard of hearing and it’s noisy in the restaurant and maybe she’s lived here a really long time. “Oh really? Where in Holland are you from?” “Well, my great-grandmother was Dutch.” “Oh.”
This happens all the time. Or they’ll say “I’m Irish” or “I’m Italian”. With great pride.
Sure, whatever. But what gets me is that many of those same people are anti-immigrant and they rail about Europe being socialist or communist and how becoming “like Europe” would be the worst thing that could ever happen to “this great nation”.
You know who you are.
So to all you so-called Irish, Italians, Dutch, Germans, Swedes, etc.: Decide already. If you want to claim you’re Dutch, then learn the language, or at least go visit sometime. And not just to take pictures of yourself in front of a windmill, but to see what being Dutch means to Dutch people. The real ones.
And if you want to rag about everything European, if your view is that any fair healthcare or any realistic safety net, or the idea that you can’t put a price tag on everything, or any sense of it being reasonable that everyone contributes to society according to his/her abilities is “un-American” (said in a tone as if anything not American is the ultimate insult), then shut up about being Dutch.
You can’t have your Dutch apple pie and eat it, too.