Grouping and Labeling People and Races
It is difficult for some people to distinguish “an individual” and then think they are nice or not nice unless they have actually befriended him or her and actually know them, then it’s different. Instead what (some) people like to do is group people together and brand (stereotype) them as such and such “type” or “group” of people.
For example in Ecuador Norte Americanos are branded as being $$ loaded. Even when the north American resident tries to pay the local rate for things and live like the locals, we’re somehow still $$ loaded. Oh, and the whiter skinned you are and the lighter your hair color means you are even more loaded. $o if you have blonde hair and blue eyes, you must have more money than the brown-eyed brunette gringo.
Further extrapolating this erroneous idea as truth, here’s a comment from a Cuencano on a gringo website found at the bottom of an "ugly article" written about gringos. He comments, “We like the affluent and High Class North Americans, not the economy ones who try and save a buck.”
Oh really? That’s nice to know.
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To be content makes poor men rich;
Discontent makes rich men poor.
Poor Richard's Almanac by Benjamin Franklin
It sounds as if this man is saying, "the more money you have, the nicer I can be".
Beware of little Expenses: a small Leak will sink a great Ship.
Poor Richard's Almanac
Once in awhile some of the Ecuadorians come out of the wood-work and say how they really feel about us gringos. The best way to get an Ecuadorian to say how they really feel is for a gringo website writer to write something distasteful and disrespectful towards other gringos, grouping them together and labeling them and then publishing this rude and disrespectful attitude on their website.
You see, when some local Ecuadorians see this happening it gives them the courage to come out of their shell and say how they really feel about some of the gringos living in Cuenca, anonymously of course.
Notice in his wording the commenter uses “we” and “us” a lot, as if he were speaking on behalf of all the Ecuadorians. Now, let’s deduce what is actually being said here.
Silence is not always a Sign of Wisdom, but Babbling is ever a Folly. -- Poor Richard's Almanac
Do Ecuadorians Like North Americans?
- If you are affluent we will get along. (better not come on a small budget or pension if you want to be liked)
- If you speak Spanish you are nice. (if you want to be liked in Ecuador, you better learn the language.)
- If you are high class you are nice. (better have sophisticated tastes, dining in and staying in the classiest of restaurants, hotels and rental homes.)
- If you are educated you are nice. (better have that degree and bring it with you)
- If you are well-traveled they like you. (Better lie and say you’re a world traveler.)
- If you are open-minded they will like you. (whatever that means…open minded about what?) Maybe opening your wallet, and without complaining to boot!
If you'd be wealthy, think of saving more than of getting:
The Indies have not made Spain rich, because her Outgoes equal her Incomes. --- Poor Richard's Almanac
Clearly this Ecuadorian says he will not get along with you if:
- If you are concerned about your personal economy.
- If you don’t speak Spanish.
- If you don’t stay in the posh hotels and eat in the ritzy restaurants.
- If you’re not open-minded
- If you complain about his country
- And finally, if you have never traveled outside of the US before.
None but the well-bred man knows how to confess a fault, or acknowledge himself in an error. -- Poor Richard's Almanac
We don’t mean this in a bad way but these disparaging comments coming from a supposed well-off Cuenca business man sounds childish and uneducated at best. People with manners, class, and diplomacy don’t talk like that. It sounds like this man has an agenda, just like the gringo man who wrote the defaming post about a majority of the gringos who have moved to Cuenca.
Industry, Perseverance, & Frugality, make Fortune yield.
Poor Richard's Almanac
Not all Ecuadorians think like this man, obviously. We're not even supposing such a ridiculous assumption. In our four plus years of living in Cuenca, we've only met a few unkind folks. The majority of Ecuadorians are very polite and pleasant.
Food for Thought
Can you imagine just for a moment, if we gringos moved to Ecuador and treated all the workers and employees that only make $300 to $400 a month, and all the uneducated folks and indigenous people with the same kind of disrespect that he is referring to of some of the lower economy gringos? What do you think would happen? Imagine just for a moment. The President would or might just rightly kick these foreigners out of this country to avoid an uproar!!
What he and maybe others, who believe as he does is not doing is looking outside their own agenda box; it is difficult for some Ecuadorians to look ahead into the future and see that the gringo who comes here with the “smaller economy” as he calls it, are actually the ones who keep this country stable by buying and selling with the local (majority) small merchants, where as the “affluent” as he puts it, don’t shop in the Mercados and small mom and pop businesses as much; They’re just helping to make the rich, richer and greedier.
He calls the smaller economy folks the complainers, but in all actuality it makes the most sense that the complainers are the better-off, because things are not up to their standards of living that they are used to back in the states. The majority of gringos in Cuenca are probably on the smaller retirement ($1200 to $2500) pensions, not the bigger one’s ($2500 to $4000 or more).
What the Ecuadorian man does not know/understand is the smaller pension retirees can also afford to eat in the classiest of restaurants and stay in the posh hotels and rent expensive housing (and they do sometimes) but because of principle and economic restrain they choose not to. Instead, they choose to come to this beautiful country of Ecuador and live as closely to the Ecuadorian level as much as they can out of respect for the country and out of principle from their own conviction.
Diligence overcomes Difficulties, Sloth makes them.
Poor Richard's Almanac
We think any open-minded, well-read, good mannered person would understand this concept.
And here's another Cuencano that mysteriously came out of the wood work and commented on the same "ugly article" that belittles most of the gringo population that lives in Cuenca with this comment.
There it is, in case there were still a couple of holdouts that think we're just making this stuff up! Now you’ve heard it from the horse’s mouth! Is there more than one horse that feels this way? Sure there is, but they all have personal agendas. The way we see it, it is very much their problem; we have ignored it up to this point just because it is not something we should take with much importance.
We’re only writing about it now to inform our readers that not everything and everybody in Cuenca Ecuador is as it seems. We strive to bring our readers information they can use for the good, not fluff that won't help them. Some things should be brought out in the open so we can behave appropriately as we do not want to feed into other people’s presumptions and agendas.
Pardoning the Bad, is injuring the Good
Poor Richard's Almanac
Source: Poor Richard's Almanac by Benjamin Franklin
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We're an Expat Family of Five, Living Frugal, Healthy and Happy Abroad. We live in Cuenca, Ecuador and travel the Ecuador coast whenever we get a chance. We just adventured throughout the country of Panama for five weeks! Come along and enjoy some of our experiences with us!