• Aug. 17, 2007 – A Reply to: Patriotism a Dirty Word.
Posted in Commentary
What does this mean in the long run? Well, eventually, as history has shown, a crisis will shock the very foundations of society and survival as a nation will be in peril. Such a crisis will force the nation to unify if they are to survive. We got a glimpse of this unity in the immediate aftermath of 9-11, when the country temporarily forgot its political differences and came together as a nation to defend freedom. Our nation will face another one of these great crisis, just as it has before (eg. WWII/GD, Civil War, Revolutionary War, King Phillips War) and it will remember what it is like to be a whole nation again, with all of the fixings that come with such a condition: renewed patriotism, renewed sense of direction and values, and things like “duty, honor, country” will be an ingrained thing once again.
So fear not, while there will be troubled times ahead, our nation will reform back into what you are longing for. We will just have to put up with some hardship in the meantime, but guaranteed, we will be a patriotic nation under God once again!
I found an interesting article in City Journal that appears to verify everything Weebork is predicting above. Scary stuff, but we are even seeing it here in Greensboro, NC.
• Aug. 17, 2007 – Comment on: Patriotism a Dirty Word
Posted in Commentary
1) SF: “There are many types of “patriotism,” Brenda. There’s blind following of national authority figures, there is xenophobia and jingoism. There is even — believe it or not — principled dedication to following the Constitution. Not all of these sorts of patriotism are concurrent in their outlook or outcomes.”
BB: Patriotism is none of the above SF. Patriotism is the deep seated love of country and countrymen and a desire for their freedom, liberties and peace for which you are willing to give all you have to give in order to preserve. Patriotism is being able to get beyond ones own determinations of what is right and find and agree on what is right for the brotherhood which makes up the nation.
The things you describe above are just manifestations of what some would claim is patriotism, but which are in reality the antithesis of patriotism. There is no love for countrymen in any of these, there is only love of self and ones own beliefs and goals regardless of what is best for the nation as a whole. These things are divisive and corrosive and are blatantly evident today. These things are also extremely dangerous to the people of the nation because if not put aside for true patriotism they will become the downfall of the nation. No outside enemy can ever defeat us, we can only defeat ourselves. And, I believe we are now in the process of this national destruction.
2)SF: “There are some good points to having a drafted armed forces, particularly in time of war. Unfortunately for the boosters of the draft, we haven’t engaged in a real “war” in the classic sense since 1945. And don’t forget, the last time we had a draft, it was far more of a burden on the poorer classes than on the wealthy. IMO, if we’re going to have a draft, it should be 1) ONLY for a true defensive emergency, rather than to facilitate the building of an American Empire that we’ll never be able to maintain, and 2) ONLY if the wealthy and powerful have no more means of avoiding it than the peons.”
Southern Fried we haven’t engaged in a so called “real war” since 1953 actually with the Korean War because that was the last war where the combatants were defined as such. War today is what we are in now. We are the only defined combatants fighting an enemy who hides among the population. This is the “war” of the present and the future.
If 9/11 was not a “true emergency” then I simply don’t know what a “true emergency” would be. We were attacked on our home ground after decades of being attacked on foreign soil and doing nothing about these attacks. If I am reading you correctly you do not consider 9/11 a “real emergency” and therefore we can not agree on what one would consist of. Perhaps the bombings taking place on your own street?
Besides, realistically, in an “emergency” is entirely too late to draft and train an army.
I have blogged on this before but will outline again what I would see as a draft into national service: All (males and females who are able bodied) to be drafted into national service for a given number of years, and having a choice of how to serve. Either in the Armed Services, Peace Corp, Volunteer teaching mentoring programs in the ghettos, volunteer medical services in our hospitals and clinics, whatever. For this they will be paid a salary adequate to keep them in what ever place they are assigned, and if they pursue advanced education during this time this too shall be a part of their pay. At the end of the service they will receive advanced education to equal the years served.
The important portion of the draft IMO will be three months of boot camp. No one will be thrown out of the service due to bad behavior, they will instead be punished. Discipline, responsibility and integrity will be learned and Lord only knows our youth today could use a dose of these. I have spend time on both college campuses and military bases with young people and believe me when I say there is no comparison with the two groups. The college campuses are populated with children who have the bodies of adults and perhaps significant intellect but who have the common sense of unruly children. I loved my years as an instructor with these students but I was not then, and am not now, blind to the fact that campus life is detrimental to both the mental and physical well being of those who attend college before they have matured. This is not to say they do not eventually mature but it is a long hard road in comparison to having some discipline instill early on.
The above is my idea of what our youth need and what our country needs to do with our youth in order to prepare them for the future they will be faced with; the future that I am afraid is swiftly coming at us and for which we are woefully unprepared at the moment.
This would also take care of your stipulation that both rich and peons serve.
3) I won’t get into a discussion of religion with you or anyone SF because it is hopeless. I will state a fact, the founders of our country then and the leaders all down thru the decades to the present have always begun any public meeting with a prayer to the one God of all men. This God has been removed from the public domain and the lack is evident in our schools and on our streets. You mentioned the 1950’s, then do some fact checking and compare the stats for crime, poverty, illegitimacy, drug use, whatever for then and now. I am not saying that removing God from our public life is the sole contributor of the rise in all our ills, but surely replacing God would do no harm and just might do some good if the Ten Commandments are taught. And this is as far as my discussion of religion will go. I will still pray for One nation under the care and blessing of our One God.
The draft was far more of a burden on the poor than on the wealthy. Yes, but that has been the case throughout history. The officers usually come from the middleclass or well off but the foot soldiers ranks are filled with the poor and lower middle classes. This is also the case with the Volunteer Army that we now have in place. (The rich quite simply have all things better than the poor SF. Even in Socialism this is true because man being man there are ones willing to work harder and smarter to get more and there are those unwilling or unable to get more. Blame God for giving us all a freewill to choose our course if you need to place blame for the inequities of life.) Drafted or Volunteered the outcome is the same, has always been and will always be. That is, until the “war” comes to our own streets and then rich and poor alike will be it’s victims. Our soldiers are now in Iraq and Afghanistan and other hotspots around the world so that the fighting does not come to our streets, but remains on others. Our soldiers understand this, it is only segments of our population buying into the demagoguery of politicians who don’t seem to realize that it is there or here. 9/11 was the first step in the enemy coming to our streets and we took the war right back to them. If we had not then 9/11 would have been followed quickly by more assaults on our cities.
• Aug. 16, 2007 – Patriotism is a Dirty Word in America Today
Posted in Commentary
Patriotism is simply not part of our lives anymore. First we did away with the draft which was a huge mistake. Eight weeks of boot camp made men out of boys. It also instilled a love of and appreciation of country. The draft united the population with an identity as Americans, as veterans, as Airmen Soldiers or Marines.
After removing the requirement for national service for young people we than took the flag , the national anthem and God from our schools. What we have today is a people divided and viciously attacking each other over every little social issue that comes up. This is the result of the disconnection from the bond of being Americans.
We do as a nation look for it; we want as individuals to belong to this group called Americans who can think and feel and believe with the good of all as its unique characteristic, but it eludes us. Go back and read your history books or just talk to older Americans and you will learn that the people had this “something” during two world wars and a terrible depression. So what happened? Some would say Viet Nam happened. But people 58,000 dead is a relatively small number in our history of wars. (see: http://members.aol.com/usregistry/allwars.htm ) This was ostensibly the reason for making our s an all volunteer army and doing away with the draft. By Dear Lord was the price we have paid of disconnection from our unity as Americans worth the turmoil and strife and discord we live with daily as a nation today. Was it worth disbanding the one common denominator the men in our nation had one with the other? Was it worth discontinuing the one common song and pray our children and our citizens had in it’s public gatherings. I think not.
I think not because we as a people are looking to replace this connection, and looking in all the wrong places for something that had been so easily available to all with a single united service to our country, a song and a prayer. Now we turn to gangs or clubs or associations. None of which offer universal goals and beliefs thus leaving us with gangs and clubs and associations that are at odds with other gangs and clubs and associations.
And after 9/11 we had this spirit of oneness, this patriotism back for a short time. It felt so good. We were united in purpose and we looked for and found common ground in our goals to care for the wounded, the dead and dying and the grieving. We were also united in seeking out our enemies and the perpetrators of this crime against Americans. Then somehow we lost that spirit again. We backed off and went about our lives; those still involved and the survivors began in-fighting over a “fitting” memorial (which hasn’t yet been built because it hasn’t yet been able to regain the spirit of honoring those who died over the selfish wants of the survivors and developers and politicians.)
I wonder will we ever again be “One nation, under God”? BB