Thursday, March 30, 2006

Sign Language

     After reading once about gangs which use certain hand gestures to identify themselves and/or communicate with one another, I’ve occasionally wondered what messages I may inadvertently be sending (especially as I talk with my hands).  Well, it seems there may be some confusion as to what certain Sicilian gestures mean.  After leaving church this last week, Justice Scalia moved his fingers back and forth under his raised chin, which was interpreted by a reporter for the Boston Herald and, subsequently, the MSM across the country, as an obscene gesture.
     In response, Justice Scalia wrote what CNN describes as a “scathing letter” to the editor of the Boston Herald.  In his letter, Justice Scalia quoted from Luigi Barzini’s book, The Italians: “The extended fingers of one hand moving slowly back and forth under the raised chin means ‘I couldn’t care less. It’s no business of mine. Count me out.’”
     To add insult to injury, the Herald labeled Justice Scalia an “Italian-American jurist.”  Scalia stoutly insisted in his reply letter that “I am, by the way, an American jurist.”  I think that is a particularly fitting response for one who insists that American law, not law from foreign jurisdictions, should control decisions in the United States!


Josh said...

Amen to that! No foreign law should dictate American law. Go Justice Scalia! What a proud American.

Kevin said...

In addition to the foreign law angle, I also appreciated the willingness to be defined simply as an American. I get so sick of the various racial/ethnic/nationality labels: African-American, Irish-American, Italian-American, Asian-Amercian, Hispanic-American, etc. I think this kind of politically correct categorization only serves to heighten any racial tensions that may already exist rather than eradicate them.