Friday, April 18, 2003
Brian Weatherson ponders those deep cultural divisions between us and the US.
One of the things that takes a while getting used to in America is that the place doesn't close down for Easter. Virulent Memes says that Good Friday is the quietest day of the year, and that's a pretty good impression of just how much the country does close down back home. And today (that's still Holy Thursday here) is the busiest travel day of the year in Australia, by far I think, but barely registers in America.
This is strange because by most measures America is a much more religous country than Australia. It would be impossible to have an atheist President here for instance, but it was barely comment-worthy that we had an atheist PM all through the 80s. It's just Christian holidays don't count for as much. It'd be nice to think that's a sign of tolerance towards other religions, and maybe at some deep level it is.