The Amish

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I don't think they're dumb... men. I would just think it's cultural. If it doesn't harm me or others I can respect and appreciate other cultures. However if I perceive something within another culture being harmful in some way, I can't respect that. For example, fgm.

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Originally Posted by Kilajo
It was a men in general thing. I wasn't trying to say Amish men are dumb specifically. lol
From the contents of this thread it seems the Amish are not well understood. I myself have had awkward interactions with them, and wish I had a better foundation of knowledge to be able to understand them better.

I worked in a trauma hospital where a young Amish man had been in a car vs. buggy accident... Imagine my discomfort with his parents standing there in full Amish garb and their tan, muscular twenty-something son in only a hospital gown. Honestly it seemed like I was the one who was most uncomfortable... I can only imagine what they thought of me working with their son! So awkward.
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From the contents of this thread it seems the Amish are not well understood. I myself have had awkward interactions with them, and wish I had a better foundation of knowledge to be able to understand them better.

I worked in a trauma hospital where a young Amish man had been in a car vs. buggy accident... Imagine my discomfort with his parents standing there in full Amish garb and their tan, muscular twenty-something son in only a hospital gown. Honestly it seemed like I was the one who was most uncomfortable... I can only imagine what they thought of me working with their son! So awkward.
Originally Posted by lauraloo
Well thank God they actually let you work on him. I'm sure a lot of times they have emergencies and there is no phone to call the squad. I think they should at least have a community phone for situations like that.
They often have phones in the barn.

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Apologies - I don't know the answer to your question, but I think I understand how awkward you must have felt.

I had a similar situation with an Orthodox Jew (I'm Jewish but not orthodox). I asked him if he would like my seat on the bus (he was elderly and frail) and he didn't answer me. I asked again because he looked very unsteady and he turned completely around so that his back was to me. Then his wife said yes he would like your seat so I got up and gave him my seat, but I wouldn't bother again if the same situation presented itself. If I'm not worthy of a simple response, (by virtue of being female) go ahead and stand there.

I hope you get some good answers here and have better experiences.
Originally Posted by curlypearl
I'd have been like, " ish. Guess not. And had a good sit.

People.


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FroZen

Last edited by Guide22; 06-16-2012 at 04:11 PM. Reason: Edited due to language rules.
I've had lots if interaction with the Amish and from what I've gathered, there are more conservative communities and there are more liberal communities. The communities in MD, DE, and PA seen to fall on the liberal end because they interact with the "English" more. They have phones and cell phones in some instances (but strict rules on when they can be used, and where they are kept). They drive horses and buggies but they will ride in cars for longer distances (again with strict rules governing it).

My BF recently had an Amish man and his three sons do some wood work on his house. He talked to them via phone. When they arrived everyday to start work, they were dropped off in a car by a hired driver for the community (an "English" person) and they didn't act weird or anything towards me or his mother. It was kinda interesting because they were joking and laughing with the BF like they were old chums.

There is a show on the national geographic channel that follows the lives of several ex-Amish folks and they talk a lot about the various Amish communities. It's really interesting because it appears the community in Lancaster PA is much more liberal because they don't cut all ties with kids that decide to leave the community while others completely shun those that leave and cut all ties..and some fall in the middle. I'd suggest you all check it out.


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Yes, we have our own large community of Amish here in NE Ohio, so I'm aware of what you described.

Some people --- tourists, mostly --- tend to idealize them. Locals get along with them, but know they are hardly without issues within their own community.

12 indicted in Ohio Amish beard-cutting attacks - CBS News

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There's an Amish couple (actually, they may be father and daughter, I can't really tell) who I buy pies from and the man looks me in the eye and I've seen him make small talk with women.

I live in TN. Maybe the Amish community is less formal.
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I think it varies a lot, and is perhaps an individual choice. The Amish men around here are often bashful, but nice. Some are downright friendly, while some are cranky.

Just like us.
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Speckla
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They often have phones in the barn.
Originally Posted by claudine19
It's a phone shanty. And they let their girls go to school until the 8th grade. Why not mention some of the more progressive, forward thinking? Like the Mennonites?
I met an Orthodox Jewish couple thru work and tried to shake their hands and was rebuffed. But then I remembered what the issue was and I wasn't offended at all. It's their cultural obcervance and I respected him more for being able to flout conventional norms and adhere to his own moral code of conduct, no matter how awkward or unusual it might be.

Clearly, in this day and age, people w/ these types of customs know they are not going to literally become tainted or corrupted or dirty or whatever by touching someone. But it is a code of conduct the follow to show obedience.

I can deal w/ that. I just we all knew about these different beliefs system more bc knowledge makes it not-awkward IMO.
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I don't know. The sexism of the Orthodox really bothers me.

The book A Year of Living Biblically by A.J. Jacobs really highlights the gender biases inherent in Orthodox Judaism. Did his wife sit in a particular chair while menstruating? What a shame! Now it's unclean, because she tainted it.

I personally find it galling, but if you feel otherwise, we can certainly agree to disagree.

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It's a phone shanty. And they let their girls go to school until the 8th grade. Why not mention some of the more progressive, forward thinking? Like the Mennonites?
Originally Posted by Speckla
Because we're talking about antiquated faiths, not progressive ones.

(No unkindness intended, Ms. Shpeckles.)

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I've known some conservative Muslim men that also don't touch women. So no handshakes or looking directly at you. It is sexist but that's how the culture is and not seen as a bad thing ...men and women are not to be treated the same way. It makes me uncomfortable since that's not the norm here. But since I've been exposed to it, it doesn't freak me out, just kind of really annoys me.
I would say that "really annoys" or even "really, really annoys" is about right for me as well. Any time we're deemed unclean or lesser or somehow (again) tainted, I don't like it, regardless of the culture.

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I would say that "really annoys" or even "really, really annoys" is about right for me as well. Any time we're deemed unclean or lesser or somehow (again) tainted, I don't like it, regardless of the culture.
Originally Posted by claudine19
Oh I've never had the feeling of being seen as lesser or unclean, if anything the opposite. I just don't like that much separation of the genders thing and I just find it socially awkward, especially if the guy is not talkative or really looking at me.
I know what you mean. I guess I see the "lesser" part as integral thinking to the sects or faiths that practice so much separation.
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Not everyone has the same way of life and if it's not one's particular cup of tea then simply don't live that way. Just because a certain lifestyle choice is not your own doesn't neccessarily make that lifestyle choice wrong, weird, and a bevy of other negative things..it's just simply wrong FOR YOU.

I think a lot of times when people aren't part of a culture or a certain religion it's very difficult to fully appreciate it or even comprehend the reason behind certain practices and the justification people feel in their own lives for living that way. Plus, if it doesn't jive with one's particular brand of thinking it's easy to down it and project that something is wrong with the people that practice it.

But interestingly enough when the tables are turned..people get seriously offended when their lifestyle is characterized in a negative way. Go figure.
Marah, I wondered if you'd be appearing here.

I don't know what branch exactly of Judaism you practice, but none of my issues with Orthodoxy are aimed at you. I don't want to share more details about why it bothers me so much, since they may appear out of context later, which has happened before.

Certainly the way you and yours live is up to you, and I understand that you don't expect others to adhere to the same rules. However, other people, including me, are free to express our feelings about it, just as you've done elsewhere, on other subjects. So, please don't take this personally.

Thanks, and Shalom (in the peace sense).

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I don't get why people are bothered. I'm kinda fascinated by it.


Even the man not speaking on the bus wouldn't have bothered me. I'm always amazed by the discipline of others

My co-worker had a Amish nanny until very recently. I loved hearing all the story. she was dropped off my a Amish Cab service. There is also a store that charges the Amish to recharge their cell phones and other electronics.

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