Archive for January, 2009|Monthly archive page

Cultural differences part 1

In Uncategorized on January 28, 2009 at 20:22

This is the main reason why I think that we as Danes should refrain from participating in international debates. It seems that our more than 1,000 year old culture with a mature degree of understanding satire, jokes but also empathy and compassion makes people feel less worth. Take a thread I made on a foreign message board.

I was very happy reporting that I had seen this TV-series and in the last episode there was an operation for cancer performed without anesthesia. I wasn’t criticizing the procedure because I am well aware that there were no options back then. Anesthesia were developed some 30 years later and this operation was conducted around 1812. It is described in an article (should not be read by minors). It couldn’t be done in another way.

But somehow this insulted the American readers of the board, because I mentioned that a mother recently received a prison term of two years because she let her daughter undergo an operation which are against the law in Denmark. It was a comparison of how far our superior technology has come if we are prepared to make use of it.

Sadly it was interpreted as an attack on less developed countries, genders, religion or an etnic minority. Some people accept that religion has a cost. When I then mentioned that there is a proposal made by someone in Danish politics to forbid such operations on both genders then it really turned ugly.

Suddenly I promoting a racist country and running a KZ-camp in my backyard.

That was what I was stating. I wrote that I was not a general supporter of such laws, regardless of the fact that circumcisions has been judged unlawful on children in several European countries. I believe that every adult has to decide what he or she wants to do with their body. Do they want to have tatoos, circumcisions, even being neutralized as the Synanon church members did, then it is up to themselves once they are adults. There shouldn’t be any limit. I do find that they regarding male circumcisions failed to realize that it is not conducted in such a civil manner in other parts of the world as it is done in the US. Over there they just poke and make it bleed where the European version often is a removal of the entire foreskin.

Well, I have no reason as an ordinary Dane from social class 5 to doubt what the health care authorties and politicians decide. Our constitution supports our state church, where there is no stand on that issue. There maybe heathens who believe in other Gods. I have no problem with that as a private person, but if our politicians pass a law that forbids both male and female circumcisions to male in order to secure both genders on a equal level, I will urge people to accept it. However as I have stated above, I think that such a law shold apply to minors only.

Just the suggestion that I should have anything against Jews or others is stupid. As most Danes I don’t care about the present conflict. I didn’t know that they were at each others throat. Our media doesn’t cover it. We have more important domestic issues like early retirement and whether a person can be called a “perl” by our policeforces to discuss. It isn’t like it is WWII down there. We are only talking about 1,000 lives lost, which is about the number of lives lost in ordinary peak traffic in Europe on a typical month.

Why all that drama? I really don’t know, but it meant that I have joined a Danish movement supporting non-intervention.

I have realized that I as Dane am living in a rather superior culture and there really is no society that comes even close to our way of living which is second-to-none in so many aspects. So that why I have chosen to stay of conversations with foreigners in the future.

Victim of mistaken identity

In culture, family on January 27, 2009 at 20:13

It seems that I am victim of mistaken identity. Somehow another Dane with the same name as mine has made a post on an American message board, I have never heard of. Because the poster of this message board mentioned my name in a thread, the moderators banned me from the board – forever.

But I am not the person he is talking about.

I have made a search on our database of family-names down at the city hall. We are about 640 people in Denmark having the same name and I am not even related to a fraction of them.

So thank you, whoever you are. You took a decision for me.

I had come to realize that the world has changed, so differences in culture are too huge to overcome. I was going to write a farewell to the people who had helped me a lot with advice with my daughter and her possible incarceration at a continuation school (See my previous post). Rather than explaining what the difficulties consisted off in this post, I will create a blog entry on that issue.

Regardless of the incomprehensible decision of the moderators, I am grateful for the help I got. If someone from the board reads this bring this thank back to the posters.

Who I am

In family on January 26, 2009 at 21:56

My parents moved to Denmark. I am born and raised here. While I on paper is a Dane, I regard myself as an immigrant because it takes more than 2 generations to fully be regarded as an etnic Dane.

I have two children born in 1993 and 1995. I am married to a beutiful wife.

10 years ago my wife got very ill and since we have struggled to manage daily life.

I have done many things in my life that I regret and some of them was to involve the authorities when we needed help. We got too much help. We have made being a close family our priority number 1. My children had many things on their mind, but unlike most teens they have not turned to drugs or similar things. They have taken their share of responsibility in our home doing their chores without complaints – most of the time.

2008 was a tough year. In the spring our family coach approach us with a “suggestion” about sending our daughter to a continuation school (In Danish “Efterskole”). However these schools are used for criminals and our daughter hadn’t committed a crime. Her problem was that she didn’t interact with her peers like most young Danes.

We appelled her “sentence” and we all were in a state of shock by the though of our daughter leaving the house premature. The illness of my wife has brought us close together and this was breaking our family up. To make matters worse, the school in question has a ban against cell phones the first month regardless of the fect that professionals from the health care system have warned against such ban due to the risk of suicides.

The school was also in another part of Denmark and people who lives in Denmark knows that we don’t have to go more than 20 miles from our hometown before we are regarded as strangers. People who have left Copenhagen for Jutland knows that it can take up to three generations before they are not recognized as the people coming from the “Devils Island”. The local citizens would avoid them while at the same time talking about them behind their back.

We confronted the family coach demanding what it would take for her to avoid her banishment and incarceration. The price was that she entered the social life. Until that drinking and dating wasn’t on her mind. Now where I had some time talking with therapists I realize that the concern was that my daughter was about to develop herself into a nurse for her mother. It was a necessary step for her to be kicked out into the party life.

In most countries it would be of some concern letting a 15 year old drink alcohol and stay out late, but it is not the case here. In fact newer research shows that the youth in criminal court is the one who has chosen not to hang around peers drinking because they want to preserve their own culture. Second the parent corps of nightowls are patrolling the streets securing the town for young people like my daughter.

So she entered the party environment and she had her mistakes ajusting to the 14 unit per week limit recommended by our health care department for females. As parents we were scared but it turned out well in the end and most important at all we avoided the continuation school for her.

2008 both challenged us as family but it did also cause emotional growth for my daughter and she is well on the way to be an independent adult person ready to challenge the world.

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