For Americans: When/if you're cornered and asked, "Don't you love America?"
or "Why don't you love America?" or "Why do you hate America?" how do you respond?
Americans seem really obsessed with this, like they want you to slice off a limb to prove your undying devotion to your country.
Depends on the idiot I'm talking to, OP. If it's someone I have a bit of respect for, or think I can reach, I take time break to break it down for them. E.g., you may want to restate that, fella; I'm from a total Scouting family, Dad broke color lines as an Army Sgt of an all-white platoon in Korea; Grandad's Negro SC regiment fought under the French flag in WWI (and gassed by the Germans for his troubles), and was threatened with lynching back home for daring to wear his US Army uniform in public; my sibs and I integrated several all-white schools and college honors programs--strictly on merit, etc. We are committed to public and private volunteer work. We did/do all that and more because we LOVE the *UNITED* States of America, believe in its promise, and are always committed to making it better. True citizens like us "agitators" see the flaws, love the nation anyway, and refuse to let unenlightened t/fools bring it down without a fight.
To straight-up assholes, I only have a couple questions I always ask:
I'm *thrilled* you love this country like I do! Where, when, and how did you serve? If you did, did you volunteer? Would you have volunteered had you been LEGALLY a second class, disenfranchised citizen? Do your kids serve, or is that something you reserve for poor whites, blacks, Hispanics, and LGBTs who haven't better prospects?
How do you currently serve your country and community (and no, church does not count)? By the way, bitch, do you know the words to "Taps?" I do. Do you bring your flag in at night, or in bad weather? I do. Have you ever run the risk of life, limb, job, or social standing to make your country better? I have. My family and ancestors have. Have you been called both an Uncle Tom AND a militant black dyke? I have.
People either engage with me, apologize for being small-minded, and want further positive discussion; or slink away and never approach me with that shit EVER again.
I'm good with both.
Where do you hang out that you get asked these questions, OP?
It's called nationalism. It's why people support illegal "pre-emptive" wars.
The obvious answer to "Why do you hate America?" is "Because of assholes like you."
Hahaha @ r5! Damn girl.
Americans have been programmed from birth to shout USA#1!!!
It is often their blanket response to any losing discussion about their country. It has gotten so bad today, they just scream this pre-programmed slogan, but don't ever bother to do anything to make it a reality. Hence the current state of the USA.
There was a time when America did actually lead the world, in a good way. That time has long past now. America only has rapid slogan yelling citizens with little substance, an insanely large military occupying force, spread around 71 countries, a Corporate controlled government mortgaged beyond its ability to pay back the loan and the "Laws of Jesus" replacing the "Laws of Science" in the public school system.
That's an amazing answer, r2. Thanks.
Most people love the country they come from even the very very poor. As a French man if he loves his country. Try a German, Jew, or even Mexico.
Obnoxious, authoritarian military-fetishists like r2 are why I hate America.
Happens a lot down Deep South, R3, especially if you're smart and interact a lot with conservative whites. I've noticed if a minority speaks/writes a certain way, isn't openly hostile to Bible Belt religiosity, has ecumenical tastes in music/entertainment, etc., white people feel really comfortable coming out with that sort of discussion. I have a long fuse, and actually like when people ask me the "why do black/gay/poor people act like...?" As Obama would say, I'm glad and always prepared for a teachable moment. Well, virtually always.
R2 for president!
You have my gratitude.
Americans are obsessed with their country because it IS the best place in the world to live, OP.
Yes, there are a lot of imperfect people her and not everything is rosy. But the freedoms here are numerous, the land is beautiful and spacious, we have great natural resources, and wonderful people. Everyone has a chance to make a great life for themselves.
Sometimes I think that people who want to put this great country down are just jealous.
Any you are part of the problem, r10. You shoot your mouth off about people and issues you know *nothing* about. "Military fetishists"? Get bent. How many anti-military/CIA campus recruiting rallies have YOU helped organize and partcipate in?
How many times have you stood up to people who tell you, "You can stay a pie in the sky(!?) liberal now, but when you make real money and higher position, you'll go Republican"? In the workplace, no less?
Have you ever joined the military specifically to improve the image of your minority group, to prove we are smarter, better, braver, love our country more than 90% of the majority culture-- not for some dumb jingoistic reason that ignores our racist, phobic history?
FUCK you and your ridiculously narrow world view. You sound like those conservative assholes I tell off and dismiss.
"Which America? North, Central, or South?" is the proper response.
OP, no one ever really asks anyone that question except once in a great while a brainless conservative operative will say it on the Fox network when he's backed into a corner. No one takes it seriously--the person who asks it is considered an idiot for asking it.
[bold]For Americans: When/if you're cornered and asked, "Don't you love America?"[/bold]
[quote]Americans seem really obsessed with this, like they want you to slice off a limb to prove your undying devotion to your country.
Some Americans, yes.
Remember the flag-burning controversy of the early-1990s?
There were people who thought that they were required to burn the American flag. And they looked at those who were supportive of it, for Free Speech, as outrageous.
Shallow group of people.
In reality, OP, I don't have any such conversations with people directly. If I was ever in a situation with that occurring, I'd get the fuck out of it. It would be like encountering a sick group of militia types with whom you would dissociate.
No, a hearty FUCK YOU to you, r2 / r14. I reject utterly your idea that people who spend time in the military jump to the top of the list of those who are allowed to express an opinion about the country. And if I could physically shit on the idea that military service is THE definition of "serving the country," I would; gleefully and repeatedly. I'm grateful to police, firefighters, garbagemen, postal workers, teachers, nurses, community volunteers, and a million others for the work they do serving the community and helping its people. And I rate their work far higher than that of any military service or military action undertaken in my lifetime. FUCK YOU for assuming we're all supposed to defer to you just because you spent time in the military. Good for you. It's tough work and dangerous work. But it's only one of countless professions which "serve the country."
FUCK YOU a million times over for assuming we're all supposed to genuflect over your military career and that anyone who doesn't is "part of the problem." There aren't enough FUCK YOU's in the world for that.
"What's love got to do with it?"
Always the best answer.
Wow, is R13 a typical example of "drinking the USA#1!!! punch" or what!
Yes, it's a very pleasant continent.
R2 doesn't seem to realize there are countries where your family would never have had to break the color barrier....because there wasn't one.
R13, I beg to differ..
OP I've never been stopped and asked whether I love America. But I live in L.A.
[quote]Americans are obsessed with their country because it IS the best place in the world to live, OP.
That's not true, R13. Have you ever spent any time in another country to even know what you're talking about?
I'm NOT putting the U.S., down when I say that there are other nations that can equal the U.S. for a great place to live. My work took me to more than 50 nations, some where I spent just a few weeks, others much longer. I've seen some horrible places, but there are nations that far exceed the U.S. in many categories.
R18 had a very good response to R2. But I don't think R2 was intending to necessary offend anyone.
My response follows with what R2 wrote:
[bold]Depends on the idiot I'm talking to, OP. If it's someone I have a bit of respect for, or think I can reach, I take time break to break it down for them.[/bold]
One way to "break it down" is inform people what life is like in other countries. A comparison chart. That would really be of service.
[bold] E.g., you may want to restate that, fella; I'm from a total Scouting family, Dad broke color lines as an Army Sgt of an all-white platoon in Korea; Grandad's Negro SC regiment fought under the French flag in WWI (and gassed by the Germans for his troubles), and was threatened with lynching back home for daring to wear his US Army uniform in public; my sibs and I integrated several all-white schools and college honors programs--strictly on merit, etc.[/bold]
Great! Congratulations! Remarkable! Etc…
[bold]We are committed to public and private volunteer work. We did/do all that and more because we LOVE the *UNITED* States of America, believe in its promise, and are always committed to making it better.[/bold]
Please keep in mind, R2, that the military is in such strong condition because of the wasteful funding of it and how the U.S. government props up the military industrial complex to lord their power other countries. If an American citizen is young, unafraid, and has no concern about this thing called [italic]mortality[/italic] … the United States military is where The Future Is for jobs in America. (So to speak.)
[bold] True citizens like us "agitators" see the flaws, love the nation anyway, and refuse to let unenlightened t/fools bring it down without a fight.[/bold]
"True citizens" isn't a particularly enlightened phrasing. It's condescending shit, like Sarah Palin expressed in battleground Virginia, for the 2008 campaign, when she talked up "The Real Virginia."
[bold][italic]To straight-up assholes, I only have a couple questions I always ask:[/italic]
… Where, when, and how did you serve? If you did, did you volunteer? …[/bold]
Totally legit questions. But what answers would you expect? I would expect most to say they haven't because they: 1) Never served (just as is the case with the chicken hawks in the Republican party and their likewise chicken hawk sycophantic Republican voting electorate); 2) Most people don't live lives where, in their time away from work, they would be making the time to serve their community/residing city, township, village, etc. It's not so much motivation. It has mainly to do with how people live.
[bold]…People either engage with me, apologize for being small-minded, and want further positive discussion; or slink away and never approach me with that shit EVER again.
I'm good with both.[/bold]
You put forth more effort than what they are worth. But if you're still motivated to engage, I would go back to suggesting this: Ask them how many other countries in which they have lived, or visited for a considerable length of time, and find out how they can compare life in other countries to that of the U.S. It would be a good way to find out why they think the United States of America is the greatest nation on earth. More than likely, they can't say anything. They don't know. That's because most of them haven't been outside the U.S. for as little as one-day vacation over the borders of, say, being in Mexico or Canada. They don't [italic]know[/italic]!
My answer is, "I gave four years of my life in service to this country. I'm a Desert Storm era veteran. How many years did you serve and during which war?"
That tends to shut them up.
I'd say, "Yes, that's why I joined the military."
Blah, blah, blah, blah.
Once again, and S-L-O-W-L-Y for R18:
OP asked a very *specific* question about a *specific* type of person who makes those *specific* types of comments.
In my experience , that *specific* type of person wraps himself in the weather-faded American flag he purports to revere, without understanding that flag means nothing close to what he thinks it does. This *specific* type also is almost always a rah rah, let's go kill some foreign brown/black/yellow ass, take their oil and bananas type of mentality.
When engaging these *specific* types who ARE in fact "military fetishists," your job is to throw that nonsense shit right back into their faces, make them ashamed to bring up that foolishness to me. You turn the tables on them. You rip that fucking flag right out of their hands.
Had OP asked a different question, I'd have posted a different answer having nothing to do with the military.
Besides, why did you only focus on the military portion of my response, ignoring the substance, which was about personal sacrifice, volunteerism, and (nonmilitary) achievement?
For a decade I've posted here about my disdain for our military's civilian and commissioned leaders and their incestuous relationship with business and industry. I have posted about my uncle's battle with Agent Orange-caused cancer and diabetes, how the *US military* atrocities he witnessed turned that sweet, brilliant boy into an underachieving alcoholic.
The United States of America allowed my paternal great-great-great grandfather t and maternal great-uncle to be lynched without repercussion or justice. It also allowed me and my siblings to achieve things those foul murderers fought to preserve for whites only.
I fetishize nothing and no one. What I *do* is tailor my argument to address the *specific* question and audience.
Now, pray, scat.
Nice try, r30, but you said this to me:
[quote]Any you are part of the problem, [R10]. You shoot your mouth off about people and issues you know *nothing* about. "Military fetishists"? Get bent. How many anti-military/CIA campus recruiting rallies have YOU helped organize and partcipate in?
So don't give me this horseshit that you only talk this way to other military fetishists. You obviously haul this "You are part of the problem/You don't know what you're talking about/What have YOU done that you can question me?" shit out any time someone dares to disagree with you.
And guess what? I won't "scat," you utterly ridiculous authoritarian. Somebody needs to call you types out on your bullshit.
Well the military is a huge "make work" program for the lower classes and "make money" program for corporate interests. I think of all the energy an resources that go into that and what other ways it could be spent to benefit the people here and it makes me sad.