Imma apologize now, because I’m about to not be funny. If you came here for a laugh, sorry–no dice. I’ve been fermenting this post for a while now, and realized today that it belongs here.
Imma tell you what I hate–I hate people calling my patriotism into question because I don’t believe in the cockamamy shit they do.
Before I truly start this rant–let me explain that I understand the concept of DUTY:
- My Grandfather and 5 of his brothers fought in WWII. My grandmother and my mother both served in the Marine Corps during wartime. As did my father. And my Uncle served as well. Because it was their DUTY to do so.
- I taught for 7 years in places my peers in teacher training would NEVER have thought to teach, some of whom to this day never understood why I would even THINK about teaching there. Why? Because it was my DUTY to do so.
- Before and after our nephew was fighting in Afghanistan, my husband and I sent numerous care packages so that he and the members of his unit could have a few moments of joy, knowing they had cheerleaders back here in the states. Because it was our DUTY to support them.
But I have never, NEVER thought that these wars are a good idea, and I am nauseated by the fact that men and women are dying overseas in this useless fight going on ten years now.
I understand others may not hold my view. Nor do I expect them to. That’s the beauty of it–I can sit here and rail again presidents and governments past & present in my head all I want. I could even put it down in words, spoken or written and not be jailed or persecuted (much). And yes, my freedoms include calling people out with insult and vulgarity if I wanted to.
But I don’t. Because my freedoms also include the freedom to have manners. And respect for others. I don’t have to like you, or eat a meal with you–but my home training does force me to keep some of those opinions to myself.
With Memorial Day having just passed there were a NUMBER of posts about supporting our troops, blah blah blah. I don’t listen much to holiday patriotism. Not that I don’t think it’s valid or true–it just seems a bit…showy… to me. I know how I feel. And I dont’ feel like shouting it out to the world. If you know me, you know how I feel. And if you don’t know me, why would you care what I feel?
But more than a few (well, really the same one over and over) claimed that if I didn’t support the war(s) then I was part of the problem, and that I should learn to love my country.
And I thought–who the fuck are YOU to tell me how to love my country?
Waving flags and wearing pins, and claiming you support the troops one day of the year doesn’t seem very patriotic to me, but I dont’ feel the need to try to mock you or question your loyalty on FB.
I hate this.
I hate that someone has to place labels on me or others because it makes them feel better about what they think.
I hate that the hate of others is fueling domestic and international policy.
I hate the thought that many of the young men and women I taught are old enough to be part of a draft. And I hate that that thought even enters my head.
I hate that we are so worried about terrorism abroad that we ignore the base foundations for it right here in our own country, fueled by racism and economic inequality. And it has been growing and breeding for YEARS now.
I hate that no one seems to be able to make mistakes anymore and/or apologize for them.
I hate that I feel I am being forced to defend what I THINK, as if the thinking police are going to confiscate my brain if I waver from party lines–ANY party.
I hate that basic social beliefs right or left can justify violence in others.
I hate that this is the world my son is living in.
So stop it, all of you. Just stop with the competitive patriotism/parenting/religion. Enough already. Live and let live. A person can question the actions of the government and still be a patriot. Just ask Jefferson and the 55 other men who committed treason when they signed the Declaration.
[If you read this rant, thank you. If you wanna holler at me, have fun. I don’t care if you do or don’t agree with me–which was kinda the whole point of this rant.
Hopefully next week I’ll be back to my snarky self and not so…truthy.]