Patriotism Kills: 50 Reasons Why and When I Stopped Being “Patriotic”
I was born and raised here in the midwest USA. My grandparents were all born in this country (in Louisville, Kentucky and St. Louis, Missouri), My great-grandparents immigrated here to escape discrimination, pogroms and other ongoing (endlessly ongoing) European persecution of Jews to come to the USA in the late 1800s.
I feel grateful that my ancestors, four of whom I knew as a child, were allowed to enter this country. Being here as a “native” gave me many of the privileges of a white, educated Jewish girl born in 1954.
Why and when did I stop being “patriotic” (ever notice how that rhymes with “idiotic”)? I get teary when Barbra Streisand sings “America, the Beautiful” because I want to feel good about being an American. But, I cannot and have not since 1967.
My conclusion then and only strengthened since then: Patriotism kills.
Here are the first 50 reasons I cannot be patriotic as a USA citizen.
1) Because Richard Nixon. Nixon and his gang of criminals began to do their dirty work when I was 13 and he resigned in the middle of my undergrad college years. How could I grow up “patriotic” after that?
2) Because Vietnam and all wars. Since World War II—which the USA entered far too late and then did more damage than good in Japan—the USA has had NO BUSINESS being in ANY wars, anywhere, yet we have not had even 2 years without being involved in “military actions.” Disgusting.
3) Because JFK. He was an over-privileged, drug-addicted, adulterous war-monger who has been glorified beyond belief after his death.
4) Because MLK, Jr. A great leader, murdered.
5) Because Malcolm X. Another great leader, murdered.
6) Because Karen Silkwood. Another great leader, murdered.
7) Because the ERA. The defeat of the Equal Rights Amendment (remember that, anyone?)
8) Because government dysfunction and greed. The bought-out FDA and the bribed EPA and the absurdly stupid Dept of Education and the bribed, lying and bought-out Dept of Energy and all the other “cabinet” and “government” departments that do the OPPOSITES of their stated jobs.
9) Because slavery. Should never have and still exists: check out today’s private prisons.
10) Because racism. Is worse than ever in many places and we export it.
11) Because health care. Still no national health care with universal payer for everyone.
12) Because maternal and infant mortality Rates are too high.
13) Because most school lunches. Are horrible.
14) Because deception by government. The “wars” on poverty, drugs, terrorism and whatever else made everything 100 times worse.
15) Because broken promises. Too many to list.
16) Because dishonorable leaders. Many leaders (elected, appointed and volunteer) lie. Then, they personally and financially benefit, and so do their cronies, families and friends.
17) Because Monica Lewinsky. Sex is sex. Lying is lying.
18) Because Vince Foster. Murdered by greed, political gain and selfishness.
19) Because veterans. I see too many body bags, amputees and PTSD sufferers from wars that enrich only a few and do nothing good for anyone else, ever. Enlistees and draftees are constantly lied to so that impoverished/uneducated people (mostly Black and Latino) are shamed and machismo-ed into serving.
20) Because secularism. “God” should never have been added to our money, Pledge of Allegiance and other statements, and public meetings should NOT open with “prayers.”
21) Because Christians. Many still insist that this is a “Christian” nation. Christmas and New Year’s Day are national holidays but no other religion’s holy days have those designations in the USA.
22) Because the military-industrial takeover of the world. Led by USA-owned companies and military.
23) Because Guantanamo. Never helped, never should have existed, and still does.
24) Because Leonard Pelletier Should never have been and is still in prison.
25) Because UC Berkeley. All the protesters are/were RIGHT.
26) Because Lawrence Livermore Labs. Bombs. More bombs.
27) Because Monsanto, Dow, Dupont. Liars, polluters, killers.
28) Because union-busting. Should never have been made legal.
29) Because coal mine owners. Kill miners daily.
30) Because nuclear power plants. Never were and still aren’t safe.
image from http://kractivist.wordpress.com
31) Because transit. We waited over 50 years to have electric and solar cars and they’re still not prevalent. Mass transit in most areas is non-existent or insufficient.
32) Because bees and food. We never needed or should have allowed our land and food to be poisoned. (see Monsanto, etc.)
33) Because Planned Parenthood. Constantly being targeted for doing GOOD.
34) Because health. Autism and cancers are on the rise (see Monsanto, etc.). Vaccinations do kill and maim children and many are ineffective at prevention as well.
35) Because big pharma and others lied. Especially about marijuana and tobacco. Cures exist for cancer but we aren’t provided them. We are overcharged for ALL medications.
36) Because inequality. I grew up in Missouri under “Jim Crow” racist segregation and inequality/discrimination laws. That we have to have civil rights’, gay rights’, disability rights’, sexual harassment cases, domestic violence shelters, rape shield and other “movements” to get common decency in this country to be legalized and people STILL don’t adhere to the laws is terrible.
37) Because sexism. Still everywhere. Must have feminism.
38) Because the children and youth. Child abuse and rape, incest and child molestation horrors in addition to murders perpetrated by teachers, parents, step- and foster parents, group home and youth detention center staff, religious leaders and politicians that are STILL being uncovered/discovered even though MANY knew about each and every incident. Runaways are almost always first abused, then become criminalized/imprisoned youth.
39) Because the environment. This country has many beautiful places that are being ruined by greed, selfishness and short-sightedness.
40) Because Native Americans.If you need me to explain, you’re on the wrong blog.
41) Because Election Fraud in the last five presidential and who knows how many other elections and especially during this current primary season.
42) Because Dick Cheney. If you need me to explain, you’re on the wrong blog, still.
43) Because Clarence Thomas. How was he ever and still on the Supreme Court?
44) Because Anita Hill. We all should have believed her. I did.
45) Because Dr. Jocelyn Elders. She was right. About everything, especially how healthy it is to masturbate and that abstinence-only “sex ed” is not “education” and does not work.
46) Because Bill Cosby. People are still protecting this monster.
47) Because freedom. The USA had such great promise and potential and has squandered almost all of it.
48) Because Nestle’s. Still killing children worldwide by promoting feeding infants formula over breastfeeding.
49) Because Palestine. USA is on the wrong side of this one, too. MUST be a two-state solution, but can’t negotiate with terrorists. Trouble is, they’re ALL terrorists, now.
50) Because 9/11. Was not what we’ve been told. First responders are dying/have died and money “for them” has not reached them or their families. Bush’s planes flew Bin Laden’s family out of the USA. Trade Towers did not fall due only to being hit by one airplane each. The lies go on and on.
Remember: DISSENT is patriotism at its best.