And before the Europeans robbed India, the Native Americans were robbed by Europe. However, before that Rome robbed Europe of its riches and so on. It is the tradition of powerful nations to rob lesser nations. Today it is less fashionable. That trend started when the nations that the Allies fought in WW1 and WW2 didn't take over the defeated nations; although it took the Soviets a lot longer to learn that lesson.
Another treatment by these so called superior nations is when they look down on their "inferiors." Also the various political groups go through ebbs and flows of power. The Egyptians were once the most advanced nation in the world, now the Africans are some of the poorest and least advanced nations. Egypt is in better shape, but they have the influence of the English Conquerors to thank for that.
The English and the East India Company did rob and loot India. You only have to look at the source for the crown jewels to see that. But, they left some beneficial influences, like an advanced rail system, advanced technology, and a united government. The Indians had to go through hell to get it, but when they got their independence they were a better nation for it. You can make the save statement about Europe vs. the Romans, and The US vs. Europe.
The problem is that once these nations were considered inferior. There are a lot of Britt’s that still call the US the American Colonies. Our assistance to them in WW2 improved their behavior and attitudes toward us, but you can ask any Englishman and they will all tell you that England won the London Blitz, and England lead the way to victory in Europe and Africa. Their American cousins stepped in later in the war, but if it weren't for the English Europe would have fallen to Hitler. Of course the American attitude would tend to disagree; among those that don’t know history. (I think that American won WW2, but I have to agree that we would have to have fought Hitler on American soil if not for England, but then I am an American.)
France was occupied by Germany twice and despite the best English aid the Germans weren't kicked out of France until the US entered the war. However, France has some strong political allies in the Middle East, they sell their arms there and get a lot of their oil from there. Since France has resisted to help US attempts in that region most Americans don't like the French and they feel that the French have forgotten WW1 and WW2. Americans don't seem to remember that the final victory over England in the US Revolutionary War was won because the French blockaded the British and prevented the bulk of the English troops from retreating, and redeploying elsewhere in the New World.
People and Nations tend to have short memories and they are based on recent events, as well as past prejudices. They also tend to be isolationist by nature and think that they are better than anyone else. Americans are perfect examples of this attitude, as are the Brits and several other nations. US Southerners feel superior to many Northerners, even though the lost the US Civil War. US Westerners feel that they came from a tougher background (the Wild West), so they feel superior. Even New Yorkers feel superior to those people who live in New Jersey.
This is a natural attitude of the people that make up these nations. One easy way to make yourself feel superior is to put down other people, especially those people that don’t look or act like you.
Prejudices do change. The American TV show “ER” is a very popular and long lived show. Early in the series a minor character came in from one of the nations controlled by the former Soviet Union. She was just a nurse’s aid, and due to her difficulty with English she was called Bob, as a bit of a joke. Then one day in the middle of an ER crisis she suggested an advanced medical treatment. The doctors were shocked, what did this cleaner of bedpans know about American medicine; then she the revealed that she was a doctor in her home country. Currently one of the major characters of the show is a doctor from the former Soviet Union. The people of the former Soviet Union were looked down upon during the Cold War; they were thought to be people from a less advanced society that spoke funny. Now they are considered to be regular people (what ever regular means). I see some of this happening on modern television, and television is a huge force in shaping American culture and ideas. In the new NBC series “Heroes” there is a new genetic force in the world that is creating superheroes. The first person to discover it, excuse me, the first SCIENTIST to discover it was from India. He came to American to continue his research, I assume to use the more advanced labs and equipment available here. Then to make ends meet he got the old cliché job for Indians, as a taxi cab driver. His son followed him to America after American agents (from the government or a large corporation) killed the scientist. The son slipped into his father’s life, and even took over his taxi. He did this so he could continue his father’s research. This doesn’t sound like a primitive Indian to me.
I know some of India’s history, so I know that the time of the Sultans and the Thuggies is in India’s past. I also know that Hinduism is still a popular religion and many Europeans and Americans think that pagan religions are primitive ones. I also know that some of the rural areas of India are still very primitive. We have that in the US, and even make jokes about the “inferior Southern Rednecks,” but we don’t have as many less advanced areas as India does. Of course the population of India is larger than the population of the US so I can’t claim exactly which country is more primitive. Most Americans tend to think that India is the more primitive, and they can point to the American Space Program, all the American inventions etc.
However, India is quickly catching up. They are still a developing nation, but India has had the atomic bomb for quite a while now. They have a huge person-power pool that they are just beginning to tap. Now they are entering the American Market. Outsourcing to India is an American joke. Americans are worried about the less advanced Mexicans who cross over our borders to do jobs that most Americans don’t want to do simply because they want a better life and American Labor pay is much better. I think this is really racial prejudice covered with the cloak of Homeland Security.
I am worried about India’s impact on America. I am disabled and can’t work because of my disability. I would like to be a high school tutor, but I can’t compete with India’s tutors that organize into large groups and work for only $5.00 per hour. It may be rich in India, but it isn’t even the minimum wage in America.
People keep calling China the immerging Super Power; I think that India will be as well. My ignorance of India may put me in error with this opinion, but I know that the intelligent labor pool of India will be a mighty economic force to compete against.
As for racial prejudices I laugh my rear end off at the ignorant Nazis and White Supremacist who don’t realize that the Aryan people they are so proud of CAME from India. They are nowhere as racial pure as they think they are.
I have a few prejudices of my own, I tend to like and respect hard working peoples. My biggest problem with Hispanics is that they come to America and expect me to learn their language. I tried and didn’t do a very good job of it in High School, so I resent them a little. However, I have to admire a man who is willing to brave a 5 day hike through the desert, avoid civilian and borders guards that are after them all to get a job that even if I was healthy I wouldn’t want to do. I am grateful to them for that and think that we should have a liberal green card program.
I also like a lot of Oriental people because they have that same “puritan ethic” that I have (or at least once had). From what I know of India’s people I see the same ethic. I may laugh a little at their accented English and seeming attempt to parrot American culture, but if you think about it that isn’t very funny. India’s education system may be less advanced than the American one, but America’s education system is lagging behind that of the Europeans, and we both look like fools when compared to the Japanese. If India’s education system was so poor then why do so many of them do well in American colleges? India doesn’t seem so primitive now.
Americans pride ourselves on having an advanced Space Program. Only Russia, and China have even come close to our program. The EEC has needed help with their fledgling space programs as had Japan. Now China has developed a Manned Space Program on its own. I forget when India first launched its own satellites, but it was before China tried. India seems less primitive now.
The US became a stronger power than many European nations because of our rich natural resources, or vast lands, and our larger population. A lot of America is still empty land, we have nowhere near the density of India’s population, and India is not a small country either. I don’t know about the state of their national resources, but the US is having problems with our own dimensioning resources. India doesn’t seem to be that far behind America.
America is a more powerful nation, and better accepted in the Western World, but there is a lot we don’t know about India since they are not Westerners. I do know that they are a nation that is behind the US in some areas, and I don’t think that they are more advanced than the US, but then I am fairly ignorant of India. I do know that India is rapidly advancing itself to the technological level of the more powerful western nations.
India may be looked down upon now, but in 20 years that is going to change. Already they are competing in the American market, and no one seems to realize that India is doing this from well over 1,000 miles away. Japan hasn’t done as well in that area. When India improves its trade network and gets all of its population educated to the “western” ideal they are going to be a powerful nation. Be patient my Canadian friend of Indian descent. Already America is going to India for our tech support, and now Indians are starting to teach American children (they will probably do a better job then many American schools can do). It won’t be long before Americans lose their prejudices and accept Indians as a people that are able to compete on the same level. At least America hasn’t robbed India (recently).
Answered By: Dan S - 10/7/2006