in these days in my country there is a strange tendency that makes me feel unwelcome in my own homeland. sometimes, when i think about it, i almost start crying. it’s a way down on a slippery slope and i can’t feel i can do anything to stop it.
it came to the surface in a conflict with other guys from my university. they are big supporters of the hungarian national football selection. this wouldn’t be a problem, but hungary is much more succesful in any other sports than football. it also never happened in this country that the supporters of the waterpolo team, the wrestlers, the swimmers or the hammer throwers, after a competition went out to fight each other on the streets or destroyed subway cars. this is only associated with the football supporter “culture.”
but this friend told me how exciting it was to go to romania for a match and how they saw the romanian suppoters and policeman hating them, and how cool it was to get into a fight with them. i did not understand what the point was in this. so i asked why do they need the football for this. can’t they go there to fight just at any time, and the government money wasted on stadium building can be spent on (ex.:) education.
they were outraged. (ok, i love teasing others…) because they think that this is part of whi they are, and to hate the other nations around us is a crucial part of our national identity. (sic!) unfortunately many youngsters in these days find themselfs unter the influence of these ideas.
but i never could feel this way since the most interesting things in this world are the cultures; the culture of my nation and the culture of others. does this mean that because hatred is not part of my identity, i am not hungarian? i love my country, more than one could suspect since i look a really passionless person. but i really do. i’m full of pride when i read a book of a foreign author and see hungarians mentionned. i think this is the way to look at ourselfs. to search what is the perception of other nations about us, then shape this picture to the better. i was reading a few days ago Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway. though it is not a really important moment in the novel, once therre is a scene when people drink Tokay. (or Tokaji 🙂 ) it is indeed one of the most famous product of our country, and why not to be happy when i see it mentionned. but i want to go further. i want to know our history, literature, music, fine arts as deeply as possible. and guess what i want this about other nations… i’d bet those, who hate romanians, serbians, slovakians so much, never had read the tinyest piece of their literature ever. they actually know nothing about them.
and it’s all about the way you approach others. i’m positively sure that i will be welcomed when i go to belgrade next week-end. because i could never hate anybody there and somehow people can sense this.