Friday 11 March 2011

India The Cat

"India the cat" refers to a cat that was "owned" (kept and cared for is better) by ex-president George W. Bush and his wife Laura.

India the cat - photo Paul Morse

The Wikipedia authors say the cat was an American Shorthair cat meaning a purebred cat but India looks more like a random bred cat to me. She was an all black cat. She died in 2009.

The interesting thing about this cat is the name, "India". India is a country as we all know and it appears that a group of Indians living in India objected to the name.

Her middle name incidentally was "Willie". Another strange name as this was a female cat. Willie is positively a male name and nothing but a male name being short for "William".

The name "India" was dreamt up from the name of a baseball player, "El Indio" who played in a team owned by Bush. El Indio, though seems to refer to native Americans who have been called "Red Indians".

The naming process therefore seems a bit of a mess. However, there is a journalist in the UK working for the Times newspaper who is called India Knight. She is Belgium. Her father is Belgium and her mother is Pakistani.

So that sort of proves to me that the name "India" is suitable for someone who has a connection with India or Pakistan.

So, I am not sure why this, I presume, small group of Indians objected to the name of a black cat being India. They felt that it was insult to their nation, it appears.

They must have a low regard for the cat, thinking that linking the name of their country to a cat was an insult. Or perhaps there was an element of racism in the argument as India was black? Not sure. That is a very speculative thought of mine.

There may have been a bit of background animosity present. Perhaps George Bush was unpopular with Indians at the time and they felt this was an arrogant American attack on India, belittling their nation. I can see that.

The problem was that it was a US president who named his cat India. Anyone else can and no one knows or cares but when a US president does it, it is symbolic of something or at least that is what these people appeared to have thought.

Perhaps an Indian living in India might leave a comment to clarify the matter.

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