We Americans claim to be a peace-loving people. We hate bloodshed; we are opposed to violence. Yet we go into spasms of joy over the possibility of projecting dynamite bombs from flying machines upon helpless citizens. We are ready to hang, electrocute, or lynch anyone, who, from economic necessity, will risk his own life in the attempt upon that of some industrial magnate. Yet our hearts swell with pride at the thought that America is becoming the most powerful nation on earth, and that she will eventually plant her iron foot on the necks of all other nations. Such is the logic of patriotism.
Emma Goldman (via becauseithinktoomuch)
What makes this more remarkable still is that this foreign leader whom they were cheering so boisterously and continuously just completed a public, ugly conflict with the American leader and has a long record of demonstrated indifference to American interests; yet the super-patriots of the American Right sided so brazenly and publicly with this foreign leader over their own country’s President. Meanwhile, both political parties in Congress are in a frantic competition to see which one can lavish Netanyahu with more obsequious praise; this statement sent out in the name of Democratic Sen. Robert Menendez of New Jersey is typical of the entries. For his part, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid ran to AIPAC to undercut (and rebuke) his own President and the leader of his own party on Israel, something that — as Andrew Sullivan correctly observed — would be inconceivable on any foreign policy issue other than Israel.
In 1857, Fredrick Douglas said, “Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. Find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have found out the exact measure of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them and these will continue till they are resisted with either words or blows, or with both.” President Obama is the one in power, therefore, the African-American community must demand from him support for its just due. For the Joyner’s, Sharpton’s and Harris-Perry’s of the world to call for quiet submission is dangerous and a clear demonstration of the exact measure of injustice they are willing to tolerate. Honest criticism is not betrayal; it’s Democratic.
Patriotism in its simplest, clearest, and most indubitable signification is nothing else but a means of obtaining for the rulers their ambitions and covetous desires, and for the ruled the abdication of human dignity, reason, and conscience, and a slavish enthralment to those in power. And as such it is recommended wherever it is preached. Patriotism is slavery.Leo Tolstoy