From http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/political-animal-a/2012_07/americahating_patriots_and_oth038346.php written by Ed Kilgore
A casual look around the internet for big July 4 statements turned up a plethora of angry expressions of America-hatred—invariably from the super-patriot Right. Read the following exerpts from a piece at Forbes by Bill Frezza, and tell me if you think this man actually loves America:
Why do we still celebrate Independence Day? Is it a lingering habit, a mindless bit of nostalgia, a time to indulge in fireworks and barbecues, devoid of any deeper meaning? Can anyone honestly argue that our nation still honors the values, or practices the principles, for which our Founders fought?
Today, most Americans have been trained to be embarrassed by the “extremist” individualist ethos that made the protection of liberty the primary purpose of government. They have been taught to apologize for the shortcomings of the “rich white men” who led the revolution. A majority of Americans now subscribe to an expansive view of government as both great provider and beneficent leveler. Its primary purpose is to redress unequal or unhappy outcomes, regardless of their source, through wealth redistribution on a scale so vast that it mocks the concept “private property….”
While reading the linked article, the use of the phrase “Private Property” really leapt out at me.
A root argument that started the civil war, this challenge to ones definition of “Personal Property”, one of the real arguments behind the disgruntled nature of many modern conservatives. Personal Property, as it is truly understood and measured by each individuals own moral compass, reveals itself again in our nations history.
One of the biggest argument in todays politics, rooted in the many of the same core values and beliefs, would be this perceived invasion by “Government” into one’s Personal Property. Taking money from my paycheck; to pay for someone else to do who knows what, is not social justice, it is theft. The highlighted words are my paraphrasing the authors, FYI. Supporting this so called Nanny State, as certain forms of media label it and certain persons call it, is just another form of theft that we all endure every day.
Yet, as Ed Kilgore asserts in his response to this article;
Maybe progressives make a mistake in not calling out people like Frezza whose horror at having to share this country with the likes of me and you makes him by any standard un-patriotic, in the grips of a global ideology that is no more essentially “American” than fascism was essentially “Italian.”
the reality is that there is indeed a global ideology at work in regards to implementing a means to “
provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare
It seems quite odd to me, to use one word; that the same Representatives who demanded the Constitution be read aloud on their first day in session, and those who would profess the deepest sense of admiration and patriotism for their Country and the concepts laid out in our Constitution, would be so unwilling to accept how humanity at large has implemented this one virtue alone in the various forms of government which have formed and modeled themselves after the contents of the very document these same "Representatives" would have you believe they would lay down their lives for.
Odd was one word I would use. Arrogantly narrow-minded, hypocritical bull@!$%# might be, in my opinion, a better way to describe it. Also, I apologize for that last paragraph being a run on sentence, I couldn't think of another way to finish my thought.
Strong words there, I know.
Coming from an angle based on a larger worldview, and to again use the words of the quoted author:
If we were still a nation capable of shame with enough intellectual integrity to call things as they are, if we hadn’t debauched our language as badly as our currency, if we had the courage to look in the mirror and see how woefully we have squandered our Founders’ legacy, this Fourth of July would be a day not of celebration but of atonement.
If you were a person capable of shame and imbued with enough intellectual integrity to call things as they are, would you really be able to call yourself a "Patriot" while looking at yourself in the mirror, simply because you chose to uphold some portions of the "Founding Fathers" vision, while criticizing the outcome and effect of other portions of their vision?
Or, to put it another way; is your interpretation of the Constitution the only correct interpretation, considering the fact that other groups of people had interpreted the Constitution in a manner that is slightly different than yours?
Of course, Thanks to modern psychology, we know that the answer to the preceding two questions is, "Yes". A sad yes indeed, but a yes that any one of these "Patriots" would be able to easily reconcile.
Either way, it still seems to come back down to recognizing that the very thing these "Patriots" proclaim to love so much, has endured because it is able to be interpreted and viewed in different ways through the lense of time. What is relevant to life today, on the planet we currently know and live on, is many worlds removed from the concerns and relevancies of our Founding Fathers.
The global population has more than tripled in just the last 100 years to reach numbers very few of these same founding fathers could even fathom. Contending with this change in population brings challenges unforeseen by many and ignored by most.
Perhaps, the argument should be cast, that we as a nation should atone for the fact that we allowed many of our own citizens to become so disconnected and out of touch with their fellow humanity that they would hold positions of such selfishness so closely to their hearts.
"If I cant own the poor people, then fuck the poor people". Is that what it really comes down to?
In fact, I think the quoted author is correct and that we should atone. Atone for having perverted the definition of Personal Property again and tainted it with such selfish origins.
hmm.. I feel like a larger article about Personal Property is in order here.