Patriotism when you don’t love your country

As I do every year, I went with my family to our town’s Fourth of July Parade. It’s a great parade, with all sorts of community groups participating, including the various chambers of commerce; Little League baseball teams; bagpipers (Marin is home to a thriving bagpipe community); an impressive selection of WWII vehicles from from the Garbarino Military Vehicle Museum, a private collection of lovingly restored military vehicles; marching bands; and the usual flotsam and jetsam of community organizations in a small town.

Thousands of people turn out to line the parade route. Flags are everywhere: they festoon the trucks and cars and children wave them wildly. It’s like the colorized version of a 1940s movie. Attending is a delightful experience.

But there’s something funny going on here. In 2008, Barack Obama got 78% of the Marin County vote. This was not an accident. Despite being the beneficiaries of the best America has to offer in terms of wealth and natural beauty, Marin’s residents are die-hard Democrats.

To the extent they veer away from soccer and carpools, and into politics, the Facebook posts I see demonstrate that, at least in significant numbers, these investment bankers, lawyers, doctors, architects, educators, accountants, etc., worship at the shrine of socialized medicine, government price controls, and higher taxes. They are fervently anti-War, despite their cheers for the WWII vehicles and the sprinkling of WWII vets who sat in those vehicles. They embrace multiculturalism with a passion, think Israel is unfair to the beleaguered Palestinians whose land they stole, and are dismayed by America’s long history of slavery, imperialism, sexism and racism, not to mention the grossly unequal way America treats its own poor. They voted for Barack Obama because they agree with him that America needs to be fundamentally changed in order to be worthy: she needs to be turned into a pacifist, socialist, small county.

This is America, and Marinites are entitled to head to the polls, determined to obtain transformation. Whether they’ll like it if they get it is another question, of course.

But what I really wondered today is what all the flag waving was about. A vast number of the attendees and participants disrespect our country’s history, dislike her institutions, and want to remake her into something entirely different from what she is today. They don’t want to improve her, they want to transform her. If patriotism is the “devoted love, support, and defense of one’s country,” what does one call enthusiasm for the symbols of a country, without any attendant support for the country itself? Perhaps a better term than patriotism would be “theater of the absurd.”

Cross-posted at Bookworm Room

The Bookworm Turns : A Secret Conservative in Liberal Land, available in e-format for $4.99 at Amazon, Smashwords or through your iBook app.

Also see...

Related Articles


VIDEO: Obama State Dept. Says We Can’t Beat Terror Unless We Give Them ‘Jobs’

FacebookTwitterEmail This is insane. A spokesperson for Obama’s State Department just laughably said that we can’t “kill our way” to


The Dead & Lottery Winners in New Jersey Still Getting Welfare Benefits

FacebookTwitterEmail So, if you are in New Jersey and are dead or maybe alive but have won thousands in the


Those Poor Muslims Forced to Sell Pork Rinds in Chicago

FacebookTwitterEmail The Chicago Tribune has a long lament of an article bellyaching about how so many wonderful and devout Muslim

Share This

Share this post with your friends!