ELL: Wall Street Journal editorial

Toni Waho toni.waho at MANATAMARIKI.SCHOOL.NZ
Sun Mar 31 09:23:37 UTC 2002

Nga mihi nui  - warm greetings in Maori from the Sth Pacific.  Thank you
Doug Wh for alerting us that the enemy of our efforts to save our languages
from sure death is ever present, influential and will, it would appear, not
stop.  While Pierre's comment about the focus by the ELLers on gastronomy is
a diversion from the crux issue and that we ought to be concertedly active
against the enemy, I think the link the racist makes between endangered
languages and supposed inferior culinary taste shows how dangerous the views
are = "Endangered languages = primitive tribes = inferior = backward,
non-modernist but really wanting to all the West has on offer e.g. Big
Macs."  As Doug originally pointed out, no thought is given by the writer
(thanks to Dora for going to the effort of typing it for us all) to the role
oppressive forces of colonisation have played with indigenous peoples minds,
souls and...diet.  If you are ever in Aotearoa (NZ) we have a delicious grub
called the huhu.  Tastes just like peanut butter and (yay) is wonderful
seared in olive oil - hows that for innovation.   I recently saw a TV
programme about a guy that collects rare beetles (from the Amazon) and sells
them in Japan for $10,000 each.   Now that's some beetle.  Imagine if the
humble huhu could fetch such a price - the Japanese would not only pay but
also they would have to learn Maori  before we here would let them have it!
Onward soldiers - our battles must continue and we certainly know the enemy.

Toni Waho (Mr).

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