Re: Capatrioalismby rchiav (Deacon)
|on Sep 16, 2001 at 23:04 UTC||Need Help??|
I understand your view but I don't agree with it as a whole. Though this may be a dissenting opinion, it's not an argumenative one.
First, I'll state what I agree with. I agree that some people are not genuine in their flag waving. I agree that what the cop said was a little disturbing. I agree that we need to tolorate people who burn a dollar or a flag. My reason for that is that tolorating those actions are, in a way, supporting our freedom.
What I don't agree with is the implication that a good percentage don't mean it. That people are now patriotic only because they feel like they should be.
I think our nation, rather our people, have become so accustomed to the freedoms we have and the quality of life that we're allowed to live that they take it for granted. From this, a good number of people have focused their sense of national pride on our economy. So in that regard, I also agree with you that we have much more economic pride than national pride.
The transistion, or the leap of logic that I don't feel bridges the gap is that because people didn't have a concious sense of patriotism before Tuesday, they aren't genuine about it now.
My thoughts on why this doesn't bridge the gap are varried. First, how many people do you know who have had a significant event happen in their life that refocused their thinking on what's important? dragonchild posted a node about how this event has caused significant changes for him. I belive that when we become so accustomed to to things like our freedom, safety, and life itself, we tend to not appreciate, or activley support the institutions that have given us these things. In dragonchild's case, it was the institution of family that was once again appreciated. And for many Americain's, I belive that they have been refocused on the belief of Nation.
I can't speak for everyone, but here's how it has changed my thinking. Before Tuesday, I was concerend about the economy and other things that now seem somewhat insignificant. Sure, I love this country. But did I think about showing my patriotism every day? No. Did I really appreciate what luxuries I've been afforded by living here? No. Do I now? Most of my waking moments have involved some slight nausia over the tremendous scope of the events on Tuesday. They've also included a great appreation of the lifestyle I've been allowed to live, a more true empathy for others living abroad who've been subjected to this on a more consistant basis, and a strong sense of patriotism which supports our Nation in whatever needs to be done going forward.
It's not that I didn't belive in our country. It's not that I wasn't a patriot. The fact is that I didn't have to think about it. Things have been good. Too good maybe. We didn't have to think about threats like this or what protection our coutry has provided us within our boarders. But as we all know too well now, we aren't as safe as we've felt. And I think many Americain's have, as I have, refocused on the love of their country and stand behind our goverment. I'm proud of our armed services. I'm proud of those who have helped in NYC and in Washingon. I'm proud of those who it seems prevented the 4th plane from crashing into another building. And I'm proud of this country for comming together.
I feel almost helpless because I can't do more to help. I've volunteered to go to NYC to help set up a lot of computer systems again, though there were more volunteers than needed at my company and I wasn't chosen. I'd guess for a lot of Americains, they feel just as helpless. If that means putting a flag up in their car is the only way they feel like they can contribute, that's fine with me.
And though I don't think it was right for that cop to ask where the flag was, I only chalk it up to misplaced good intentions. My belief in our country and our people makes me belive that most Americain's truely belive in our country and are now forced to deal with it on a daily basis. Though there's most definately people as you've described, I don't belive that most Americains are disingenious about their current flag waving. Their love of country has been supressed, but not completly forgotten.
And to add a quotable quote -