nontoxicmale 65M
132 posts
6/5/2006 8:14 am

Last Read:
6/9/2006 6:57 pm


I have had my patriotism challenged. There is an individual, whose handle I won't reveal, who regularly spits invective on the US. I realize that there are many things that this government has done that go against the ideals on which the nation was founded. I am not naive to the fact that there are goverment officials whose motivations have nothing to do with responding to the needs of their constituents. Nonetheless, this is no cause for the complete rejection of the validity of national ideals. Freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States need to be upheld. That means internally and externally. The right to life that was violated at Pearl Harbor and the Twin Towers in New York needed to be upheld. The American military has a very real reason for existence.

When I read or hear things said against my country that are intended as insults to our right to exist and protect the freedoms that we are afforded,my anger is roused. I know that abuses happen regularly. There are no perfect human organizations. But we have in place the means and laws that allow us to end and to prevent abuses. Through the rights to vote, speak freely, and assemble lawfully, we can effect changes that need to occur to improve our country. These are rights that don't exist in many countries around the world.

This individual disrespects the men and women in the military by stating that they are nothing more than mercenaries or guns for hire. I spent almost 10 years of my life in the military and I can assure you it was not for the money. I could have made far more money in civilian life. I know that the motivations of people going into the military are not only patriotism. But I also know that the military fosters patriotism and loyalty among its ranks. I, for one, am thankful for the sacrifices that our miltary suffers daily so that I continue to live in a free and open society. There are many ills in this country that need changing. There are still criminals in our government who need to be purged. But I have yet to find another nation that promotes the ideals or provides the benefits that are available in the United States.

There is an old expression, Don't throw the baby out with the bathwater. In other words, don't condemn a whole nation because there are some things about it that you don't like. There is nothing wrong with working to improve the country. There is something terribly wrong with taering down without a plan for rebuilding.

ThaRealLiv 44M

6/5/2006 10:08 am

IT's REALLY SAD, because I think these people create more hatred in tha world than anyone else!! I THink back to pearl harbour. I think of the tensions between two countries escalating to tha point where homesoil is threatened!!PEOPLE SACRIFICE EVERYTHING IN THEIR LIVES just to go over and put their lives on tha line just to ensure that the homesoil is safe! Then people turn around and throw hatred toward these people and say that it is their fault that there is violence in tha world. As if tha tensions of tha war aren't enough! I could just imagine how a soldier would have felt in tha jungles of vietnam, as he reflected back home on all those people giving him no respect whatsoever, after all he has sacrificed to give these people tha freedom to express their views! Of all tha things they choose to express, they choose to throw hatred toward tha people who fight to give them that freedom!! It's truly a self defeating gesture!!
These people are immature, and fail to see the full scope of war! In their minds, it's just people going overseas and killing with no respect for human life!
What they fail to understand is that there is not a human on earth, who doesn't value human life. They value it so much, that they will risk their lives if it is threatened!
This is true of both sides of conflict!!
Resolving war goes beyond expressing hatred!!

ThaRealLiv 44M

6/5/2006 10:09 am

requires more intelligence!!

RevJoseyWales 70M/67F
14393 posts
6/5/2006 1:16 pm

Excellent post. I spent 17 years total service Army. While I am not proud of our current govenment or what they are doing, I am STILL proud to be an American. I am honored to have served and so very proud of our young men and women serving today. Thank you for YOUR service.


SFC U.S.ARMY 1968-1985, Viet Nam 1968-69

"McVeigh had the right idea, wrong address."

"This ain't Dodge City, and you ain't Bill Hickok."

rm_kronotharsis 39M

6/8/2006 1:38 pm

There is more than one individual "who regularly spits invective on the US." I'd say, 2-3 BILLION individuals do that fairly regularly. The "official" American explanation of the global anti-Americanism is typical of the imperial thinking: they are losers, they envy our greatness, they are pathetic junkies who try to avenge their failures by spitting at those who succeed. I remember having this sentiment as a Soviet kid, - any anti-Sovietism must have had been triggered by envy for our Soviet greatness. We destroyed Hitler, we sent the first satellite, the first man into cosmos, shut the fuck up, you little Poles, Czechs, Hungarians, etc. I was able to transcend this impero-centrism. Many Americans so far weren't. They will be helped by some disastrous experiences of national failure that usually establishes more self-reflective modes of thinking. Until then, they can comfortably despise the world-wide hate for America as envy of the losers.
What America essentially lacks is the experience of disempowerment. An encounter of overwhelming force that (encounter) fundamentally transforms a society into an adult. This is where reflection begins, and the previously simple and coherent notions of "country", "nation", "patriotism", "heroes" begin to disintegrate. Things suddenly seem complicated; the "good-bad" "us-them" simplicity of childhood is gone. USA has not gone through this point. Also, having no experience of being an object of force but only a subject of force, America has been unable to reconsider force as a conflict resolving tool.
An epitome of this American "childish" self-centered thinking came in the words of Congressman Murtha few days ago in Wolf Blitzer's Situation Room: "Those responsible for the Haditha massacre, if found guilty, must be severely punished, BECAUSE ACTS LIKE THIS UNDERMINE OUR EFFORTS AND FUEL TERRORISM"... Thus the killings are seen as a crime not against those killed but against the USA whose efforts are undermined. Shooting infants in beds is not a crime in itself; it's the negative effect on American image that is the issue.

Back to the issue of the nOtional crisis. Before I am accused of hating the US, I should be asked, what constitutes the US for me. I've learnt to disentangle "people" from "nation", "nation" from "state", "state" from "government", "government" from "regime"..That's a European thing born in the agonies of the Old World; America still sees "nation" equal to "people" to "state" , - it's all the big us, the big US. Americans too easily herd into a big patriotic pack behind a leader EVEN IF THEY DON'T SHARE THE LEADER'S POLICY. "It was wrong to do that but now that it's done, we must stand firm together". This is a road to hell.

rm_kronotharsis 39M

6/8/2006 2:11 pm

I just heard this bullshit again, - "they want to destroy us" (McCain in Situation Room about the radical Moslems). NonToxicMale interprets my criticism of the American foreign policy as "as insults to our (American) right to exist and protect the freedoms". How on Earth do you make this connection ? Show me my own words that lead you to conclude I insult America's right to exist. I didn't even say anything pertaining to America herself (in those memorable posts), I only debated about foreign invasions taken by the US in 20th century. This is a symptom of an imperialistic mind, - if you oppose our invasion 5 000 miles away from our borders, you insult our right to exist. This imperial mind can no longer locate "us" within the world, - the entire globe is our LEBENSRAUM (life space).
The two empires that never were invaded by foreigners (except the 1812 episode with Brits siezing Washington), UK and US, developed the threat discourses; whether it's the Bours in SOuth Africa or the Vietnamese in Vietnam, - it's an insult to our right to exist. USA has been the most secure nation in the world, never experiencing foreign occupation yet itself occupying foreign nations and taking the lives of millions far away from its borders; when you say "Yankees go home !", they take it as an insult to their right to exist.
If you're too brainwashed by the Bushist prapaganda machine ("they hate our freedom") to comprehend the message of the Moslems (bloodily conducted by the radicals), let me translate it to you:


Ever thought why Switzerland (by far more free than US in any terms) has never been attacked by the terrorists ?

rm_kronotharsis 39M

6/8/2006 2:35 pm

Regarding the motivation to join the army. If it's "patriotism", then there is a strong NEGATIVE correlation between "patriotism" and the income : as one increases, the other recedes. The higher the income, and social status, the weaker is the "patriotism". The closer to the social bottom, the more "patriotic" people get. The most patriotic are the destitute uneducated families without health insurance. Also, taking into account the over-representation of the immigrants in the army, we conslude that foreigners (foreign-born) are the most patriotic Americans.
There are cases like that of the NFL star perished in Afghanistan. Even his motifs seem to have little to do with "patriotism" but springing from his personal value crisis; he felt diminished by comparison with his dad and grand-dad who fought in wars.

Having no medical insurance helps patriotism, huh ?

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