Bagpipe Girl toots her horn


What a shock it was to open Wednesday's Wildcat and see the word "bagpipe"! To think that such a liberal paper would even print something remotely connected to Anglo-European culture! I had to check to make sure Sarah Garrecht was still the Editor-in-Chief. Yet as I read Chris Sinclair's letter ("Come out Bagpipe Boy"), the sadness I've felt so many times once again fell upon me. He is so misled, to think that we live in an age of "social tolerance and political correctness." Open your eyes, Chris! Don't be deceived by such phony labels! The truth is and I think we all know it that such terms only apply to minority cultures.

Wait! Before you start writing a typically nasty letter in response, let me give all Wildcat readers an example: remember the AZ/UK Festival? Of course you don't. Remember the countless jokes about Prince Albert, 22nd in line for the English throne, who came to visit last semester? Now, perhaps, I've rung a bell. I remember it well because I was there, celebrating my Scottish and British heritage with a mere handful of serious onlookers (from a university of 40,000!). I remember the DJ from KAMP radio, with his insulting impression of a British accent, making jokes about the Prince in a live broadcast! Most especially, I remember the letter to the editor printed the following day, titles "Prince Missed True Arizona" (emphasis added). The author ranted and raved about not offering the Prince a piece of fry bread, or showing him the pretty turquoise jewelry laid out on tables for the Native American Awareness Week. What an ignorant response! And how typical! Don't believe me? Let me ask you: where was that festival? And where was the AZ/UK Festival? And which did you see? I think I correctly anticipate your answers. The Native American festival was intentionally placed in front of the Student Union, where the majority of students and faculty pass by incessantly. The British festival, however, was packed onto the lawn in front of the Old Main Fountain, where there was no adequate space for the Highland dancers or the medieval recreation group to perform where we would be out of the way. As for the "true" Arizona, the Prince saw it, alright: a large state-assisted university that suppresses "white" cultures while hypocritically flaunting ethnic diversity. Prince Albert saw that he wasn't welcome, and neither was his culture.

The conclusion is painfully obvious, and I hope Chris Sinclair and all Wildcat readers realize that something needs to be done about this! Bagpipe Boy is not standing outside on the mall because he's not playing a sitar or American Indian drum, because he's not selling fry bread or beaded jewelry. Such people flock to the UA Mall to expose students to the cultures they are proud of, not to impress some royal aristocrat or high government official visiting the campus. Likewise, last semester's AZ/UK festival hoped to use Prince Albert's visit as an opportunity to expose students to our culture. It's disgraceful to this school that such an event was not successful.

Yet this Bagpipe Girl is not defeated, and neither is Bagpipe Boy. (If you've ever been in a room with a piper and no earplugs, you might know that.) But ask yourselves this: would you really want us to play out on the Mall? I hope so, because there's little I love more than sharing my Scottish culture with others. That is, with others who will forgive my "political incorrectness" for being proud that I'm "white." I can't change the color of my skin any more than minorities can, but your "socially tolerant" and "politically correct" society doesn't seem to accept that, Chris Sinclair. Never fear you'll still be hearing bagpipes. Bagpipe Boy, play on! I'm playing with you!

Amy Drown

Clan Kinkead

History Sophomore

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