Thursday, July 26, 2018

In Defense Of Howard Zinn

Here is what Professor Howard Zinn said after he was asked this question: “Why do you live in this country?”

I felt a pang. It was a question I knew people often had, even when it was unspoken. It was the issue of patriotism, of loyalty to one’s country, which arises again and again, whether someone is criticizing foreign policy, or evading military service, or refusing to pledge allegiance to the flag. I tried to explain that my love was for the country, for the people, not whatever government happened to be in power. To believe in democracy was to believe in the principles of the Declaration of Independence — that government is an artificial creation, established by the people to defend the equal right of everyone to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness ... When a government betrays those democratic principles, it is unpatriotic. A love of democracy would then require opposing the government.

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Frankly, we need MORE Howard Zinns today, and fewer Stephen Colberts. Zinn sought to encourage people to think about their world in a constructive way. Colbert and those who chiefly MOCK the United States aren't constructing anything; on the contrary, their goal seems to be destruction.

Hatred of your country is not patriotism, even if you claim it is. And the belief "my country, right or wrong" isn't patriotism either.

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