CAMPAIGN 08 & EDITOR’S COMMENT: The flag attack

Pins and panders

Sometimes I think the best thing about Barack Obama is that little empty space on his lapel. It is where other politicians wear the American flag pin, a kitschy piece of empty symbolism that tells you nothing about that particular person except that he or she thinks like everyone else. Obama’s flag, invisible to the naked eye, is the Jolly Roger of a politician thinking for himself. [complete article]

Editor’s Comment — The flag issue – relating to lapels or anywhere else – exposes the divisiveness that so often parades itself as patriotism.

When one American turns to another and says or insinuates, “I am more American than you are; I love my country more deeply than you do,” he is paradoxically expressing a revulsion for this nation. For he sees in it on the one side, greater Americans, and on the other side, lesser Americans. The Americanness to which he holds so fast, has embedded within it a contempt for those fellow Americans who do not see their own identity wrapped up in a flag. How can this square with the principle of equality upon which America was founded?

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2 thoughts on “CAMPAIGN 08 & EDITOR’S COMMENT: The flag attack

  1. Russ Wellen

    Not only aren’t they true Americans, but, I suspect, most Americans don’t even identify with the entity known as the United States any longer. Too many Mexicans and Asians on the one hand, “elites” on the other.

    They increasingly identify with smaller units — church, family, and, if they’re particularly expansive, community.

  2. Azam Houle

    I agree wholeheartedly with your comment, Paul. Those who wrap themselves in the flag are precisely the same people who miss this contradiction.

    Flaunting the flag has been the most effective way of silencing dissent, branding any criticism of the official policy as anti-American.

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