May 16, 2012

The Farce of Tea Party Patriotism

The other day I was driving down the road and saw a car ahead that sported an array of bumper stickers and two miniature American flags where the dry cleaning is sometimes hung.  One of the bumper stickers advertized the call letters of the Bay Area radio station that features Rush Limbaugh.  Others addressed conservative causes: Defense of Marriage and gun rights to name two.  It was, however, the message placed in the center of the rear windshield that really got my goat.  It said quite simply, “I’m a Patriot.”

It bothers me that conservatives believe they are the only patriots in the country.  It also upsets me that many Christian fundamentalists believe conservatism is consistent with their faith.  Patriotism has nothing to do with such principals.  Here are a few of its aspects that I believe are worth mentioning:

  • A truly patriotic American will choose the education of the nation’s children as a higher priority than the amassing of weapons sufficient to destroy the world.
  • Patriotism means negotiating in good faith to fix the problems of the nation instead of filibustering away any real chance to solve them.
  • A patriot would rather see fellow citizens rehabilitated than demand a warped justice that is no more than institutionalized vengeance that fills prisons.
  • Patriots will regulate equal access to economic opportunity instead of prescribed behavior in bed.
  • The most patriotic of acts protect the young, old, weak and impoverished and insist that those blessed with good fortune contribute to the cause.
  • A patriotic America will accept good advice in order to leave to future generations an un-blighted world. 
  • Christian patriots will follow the teachings of Jesus—especially the injunction to love one another—rather than the Mosaic Law that speaks of stoning, condones slavery and depicts women as chattel.
What happened to the patriotism of the Civil Rights Movement and social programs, like the GI Bill, that led to greater access to opportunities and national prosperity?  Ditto Heads don’t have a monopoly on patriotism.  In fact, by their protection of corporate interests and the 1%, they don’t have much of a claim to it, at all.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

a patriot would not spend, spend, spend to the point of a $16 trillion national debt, left to your grandchildren.

most people on the dole are scamming the system. don't be so naive.

read Coming Apart by Charles Murray