Wednesday, February 22, 2012

All the Same Old Cliches: Love It or Leave It...

Ever since I was a teenager I have periodically heard that old right wing cliche, America, love it or leave it. This idea, the idea that there are real Americans and unreal Americans and that America is for real Americans only, of course, has a long history. This history ranges from the anti-Masons and anti-Mormons of the early nineteenth century through the anti-Catholics and Know Nothing anti-immigrant movement of the mid and late nineteenth century, the anti-Jehovah's Witnesses movement and attacks on Germans during the World War I era, the incarcerate the Japanese fervour of World War II, the anti-counter cultural movement of the 1960s and 1970s, the anti-immigrant movement of late twentieth and early twenty-first century, and the xenophobia over Islam in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries.

In the wake of 9/11 and the revival of aggressive American nationalism that followed it that cliched refrain of America for real Americans has been heard very loudly indeed once again from "real" Americans, generally conservative Christian Republican Americans, of course. Such "real Americans" have once again urged those "unreal" Americans critical of American foreign policy, American imperialism, and the American military-governmental-industrial-university complex to love America or leave it. Frankly, I, an American who is critical of American foreign policy, American imperialism, and the American oligarchy controlled by the one half of one percent, am really tired of this cliche and I think it is time for those whose mantra or rosary bead chant it has become to put up or shut up.

Those who want to cleanse America of its socialists, its war critics, its critics of capitalism, its political and economic dissidents, its Americans knowledgeable of real history need to establish a multi-billion dollar if not a multi-trillion dollar fund to fund resettlement grants for those who they want to love America or leave it. They need to set up a department in the State Department to aid those they are forcing to leave to resettle in places like Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. They need to establish a department in the Internal Revenue Service that will refund all of the taxes those whom they want to cleanse from their real America have paid over the years. Until they do all of this I for one cannot take their little cliched mantra seriously whatsoever.

Alternatively there is another solution to the problem of "real" and "unreal" Americans. "Real" Americans can all move or stay in the South, "unreal" Americans can all move or stay in the North creating, in the process, two different nations in an American version of the religious cleansing of India and Pakistan during partition in 1947. This would allow the Confederate States of America to make the states rights Articles of Confederation its charter and create a White evangelical Christian oligarchic theocracy in its holy lands. And it would allow us in the United States of America to create a nation that looks more like Pierre Trudeau's or even better Tommy Douglas's Canada than Rick Santorum's or Newt Gingrich's.

Can I get an amen?

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