Hah, hah — aren't those Amish quaint?
October 17, 2005
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Joel Stein: What’s Next … With The Amish.
I wrote this letter to Time:
I’m fairly appalled at the patronizing tone Joel Stein takes in his column ‘What’s next…with the Amish,’ as posted on-line Oct 17:
Stein could have chosen to ask how the Amish go about making decisions about new technologies rather than making fun of them or assuming that many are looking for ‘loopholes’ that would allow them to use cell phones and Rollerblades. He might have learned something about how a community can choose how and why to deploy new technologies. But he preferred to ‘taunt’ the Amish with his ‘little bit of reporting.’ (And I would emphasize the ‘little bit’ rather than ‘reporting;’ as far as I know, for example, Amish groups don’t forbid drinking Cokes or require ’28 layers of clothing.’)
Instead, the Amish are played for easy laughs. Sorry, Mr. Stein; ethnic and religious stereotyping is not “What’s next.” It’s an old, old story.