Take the Team Russia Challenge!

Anyone who has read this blog for a significant amount of time is familiar with Team Russia, especially its foreign members. These are the folks from the USA, UK, and other European countries who often live as expats in Moscow and loudly insist that Russia is rising while America and the EU are on the verge of collapse any day now. Whatever the problem in Russia, they assure you that it’s either the the same or worse in the West. Don’t let the decaying infrastructure and post-apocalyptic zones fool you, Russia is far richer than those totally gay European countries and the decadent, fast food inundated USA.  If your one of those Russians who complains about something in Russia expect one of these Americans or Brits to inform you that you are a “self-hater,” that the same thing happens in their country(only it’s worse for some unknown reason), and that you should be happy with whatever it is you have.  Learn to appreciate your Russian soul, and if you’re not sure what that means, the Team Russia ideologue will be happy to inform you, even though he might hail from the USA.

For me it is not a problem to talk about the many positive things I see in Russia, or the personal advantages I have because I live here.  Even where things look grim, I see much potential. Unlike Team Russia fanatics, however, I realize that Russians don’t have the same privileges. So that means that when they complain about conditions here, I don’t lecture them and dissuade them from speaking out.  While the ease of doing so varies from person to person, most if not all Western-born Team Russia ideologues have the option of packing it up and going home should conditions in Russia reach a catastrophic situation.  As much as they want to claim they are a part of Russia, or that they fit in better here, I don’t know of any who have actually traded in their original passports.  I think we need to change that:

THE TEAM RUSSIA CHALLENGE!

Are you a Westerner who honestly believes that Russia is far better for its citizens than your home country? Do you expect your original home country to collapse into Mad Max-like chaos any day now? Do you want to put your money where your mouth is and become a real Russian? Take the challenge by joining Team Russia for real! All you have to do is renounce your current citizenship, handing in your passport in the process.

That’s right! No dual citizenship, no parachute, no “living between two worlds.” You’re so fond of lecturing Russians as to how privileged and lucky they are to be living in a country with its own national “soul” and a “historic mission.”  Would you not want that privilege for yourself?  Why would you want to hang on to your original passport, which will surely only block your soul’s assimilation into the larger, collective Russian soul?  Give it up and become a real Russian!

Yes, yes, I know you might have family back in your birth country, but you can still visit them so long as you can suffer through the horrors you constantly tell your Russian friends, students, or audience about.  You know, horrors like the fact that Detroit exists, or those non-stop three-mile long gay pride parades which snake throughout every major street in cities throughout your home country? If you can still stomach the sights of the decaying, due-to-collapse-any-day West for periods of up to two weeks, you can still visit your family.  You’ll just need to apply for a visa just like all the other Russian citizens, many of whom have family abroad.

So why are you still holding on to that little booklet of decadence, consumerism, and gayness which is your original passport? Stop being a cheerleader on the sidelines and get in the game! Russia needs you! No seriously, it really needs you because its own propagandists write like 14-year-olds.  Give up your old, shitty Western passport and become a Russian citizen ASAP!  

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