An American Patriot
I am an American Patriot. Few would willingly argue against this
statement, but what does it really mean? And how many hyphens do you
need to narrow your definition to suit your own personal belief system?
Are you African-American, Asian-American, a minority, an atheist, an
immigrant - legal or not? Are you a socialist, fascist, communist? What
type of government do you believe in? Democratic, representative, a
monarchy, state controlled? Does a certain answer to one of those
questions preclude you, or I, from actually being a real American? An American patriot? The answer is... yes.
Understand this. Our founding fathers prescribed certain pre-conditions
and conditions for the founding and running of our nation and its
government. We are supposed to be a "free" country governed by the
people, for the people. This precludes being
governed by a king or queen, or any other totalitarian or dictatorial
leadership, including the state-knows-best approach.
In fact the constitution limits the roles and responsibilities of
the federal government to specifics as to what it can do, and specifically says, using the phrase "Congress shall pass no law" many times over, that Congress can not add
powers for itself or change or impede on citizens' or states'
rights. In fact the Bill of Rights was added post script only to make
sure individual states did not pass laws violating these rights of the
citizens that the authors of the original drafts considered 'automatic'
or "self evident." But of course congress has done so anyway through 27
and countless court interpretational rulings.
The point is if you adhere to pure democracy, are a communist, fascist, or monarchist, in their
purest forms, you are anti-American - in your beliefs. Ouch! Too harsh?
That doesn't mean you can't live here nor does it mean you're not an
American. It just means you're not a patriot.
But wait a minute. Did I say democracy is un-American? Absolutely.
Democracy is a transitional government at best, and in its purist form
is nothing more than mob rule. To believe
that one more than half of any groups' opinions or beliefs should be
forced onto the entire group is, well, ridiculous. Democracy, like
communism, is a grand concept that has repeatedly failed as a form of
government. They are both great and failed experiments. Ask the ancient
Romans, Greeks, twentieth century Russians, or laymen of current day
China, or the starving masses of North Korea. The day to day or even
generational whims of a simple majority are not always valid or sound
for sustained legitimate government. Translation: might is not always
Fifty-one percent of the people can be, and often are, simply put,
wrong. A strong and free governed population must be a society of
free persons represented by an elected government protective of
an established set of civil liberties and laws where change is possible
but through a legal process that is slow moving and thereby not overly
influenced by pulses of the moment. These laws must be protected by the
representative government through checks and balances, and protective
of the citizens governed. If a simple majority were the only
stipulation needed for change or the lack thereof, many states in
the USA might still have slavery, segregation, and worse. America was
originally, specifically, intentionally, and blatantly set up NOT
as a democracy, but as a republic. Unfortunately a good argument can be made that we
are now in a transitional democracy and headed toward an
oligarchy. The more cynical and pessimistic among us would argue
we in fact are already there. To understand the difference between a
republic and a democracy watch this video (new window).
Are you a "natural" American? I didn't ask if you were born of the
descendants of the original or indigenous peoples that lived in
this land before there was a United States. I'm asking if you were born
in these united states or its territories, or to the parent(s) of a
citizen. If so, then you are a "natural" American. A natural-ized
American is one who was not but who has become a citizen through legal
channels. If neither is true to you then you are an alien, legal or
not. "Alien" is not a bad word. It is merely a distinction between
natural, naturalized, and neither. You must be one of the first two to
be an American. But you could in theory be living here, legally or not,
and be a patriot in your beliefs and conduct. Confusing? Not really.
Can I be an atheist and a patriot? Of course you can. The constitution
guarantees you the freedom to pursue the religion of your choice,
including the lack thereof, and the lack of persecution from your
choice, with its clause and condition of the separation of church and
state, even though it never suggested the omission of God from state.
In fact it labels us a nation of and under God. And although the word democracy
does not appear in the U.S. Constitution or the Declaration of
Independence, even once, references to morality, God, The Creator,
divinity, and other God-like terms are used repeatedly. The intent was
and is clear. Separation of church and state was meant to mean
separation of organized religion and government. Not the forced
elimination of all things religious from all things social, public, political, or
African-American, Asian-American, Caucasian-American are all
adjectives, nothing more. But a true patriot would probably distinguish
his or herself an American first, with ethnicity secondary, as in
American of African or Asian heritage. Semantics to be sure and I'm not
suggesting you change how you classify yourself verbally so much as in
how you think of yourself subconsciously. This country is in its
infancy in terms of age and in comparison to other nations. As such we
are not a true race of
people, so much as we are a immigrant-fueled collusion of peoples
brought together under a unique political and social belief system.
Are you a capitalist or socialist? The word capitalist has been misused
to the point it is construed as a bad thing by many. But it too is not
a bad word. It's just a
distinction. It means you believe in free market, profit-driven,
competitive business where hard work and sound practices lead to
profits based on performance with no limits. Of course as success
mounts the potential for abuses escalate. Socialism means that society
as a whole is the beneficiary of what the state views as excesses by
business through distortive and or redistributive wealth such as
slanted taxation or tariff. Which is right? Both, of course.
Capitalists should be free to maximize profits, and government should
fairly tax and tariff the wealthiest for the protection and care of
those in society who need help. Neither concept is wholly right or
wrong until excesses are practiced. Government's sole role should be to
monitor business to make sure it does not abuse the public good. It's a
fine line between trying to maintain enough control over business
practices to ensure fair competition and deter abuses to the public
without controlling business practices as a whole. It's a constant
balancing act. But in simplistic terms one must believe in capitalism
to be a patriot. Without the drive to exceed beyond the norm, and the
rewards that come with reaching that goal, one simply won't.
If all these points and counter points seem contradictory and
complicated, it's because they often are. Fortunately for us the
answers were figured out long ago and transcribed and recorded for
posterity by a collective hoard of drunken geniuses (read more) in the master document of all documents. One that separated
and still separates us from every government that ever came before or
since. The U.S. Constitution. But as government swelled it began to
neuter the constitution with amendments and laws that circumvented the
original intents of the writings. Read more on the neutering of the constitution, and how far we have drifted from the intent of a federal government (as explained in the Federalist Papers).
Or read more patriotic prose here. But beware. Taking the red pill is a one way street. Can you handle the truth? Are you patriot enough?