'We are Americans first'They say that the first step towards resolving a problem, is admitting that you have one. Well, we have a problem, and the problem is that I fear that phrase is not only no longer true, but is perilously close to having no meaning at all. Why? Because in order to truthfully say that we are Americans first, a person has to first be able to say:
'American', with some understanding of the word that's coming out of their mouth. From what I can see, in looking at what other words are coming out of people's mouths, I'm seeing very little to indicate that most of us do know the meaning of American, beyond the shallow legalistic sense of having been born within the geographic borders of the United States... and if that's the extent of your understanding, when you come up against racist organizations advocating for 'America'... well... do you see the problem?
Sure, you're given a legal status by being born within our borders, but you do not, in any meaningful sense, become an American by such means alone, at least not in a way that is any different from how a person becomes a German or a Russian, i.e. by being born of parents on American soil - aka: by 'blood and soil', which, BTW, also happens to be the traditional rallying cry of fascists.
Now do you see the problem there?
Being an American that understands the meaning of that word, American, requires understanding that the meaning of that word, is not gained by means of osmosis through your ancestors blood, or through the soil that your mother gave birth to you upon, which were features and events which you yourself had absolutely no hand in, knowledge of, or choice in. If that and your "[insert your favorite color here] Pride!", are the extent of your claim to being an American, then you are not, in that more meaningful sense, an American.
To understand what it does mean to be an American, means understanding, and accepting as best you can, the fruit of that particular set of ideas that were expressed in our Declaration of Independence, especially, that:
"...We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed...."Those phrases of our Declaration, have deep philosophical meaning, which gives voice to the meaning and purpose of America, and yet, as Jefferson later wrote to a friend, they weren't meant to be especially impressive, or 'deep', or as an exercise in edgy literary or philosophical virtue signaling, but simply as expressions of something much more commonly profound:
"Neither aiming at originality of principle or sentiment, nor yet copied from any particular and previous writing, it was intended to be an expression of the American mind, and to give to that expression the proper tone and spirit called for by the occasion. All its authority rests then on the harmonizing sentiments of the day, whether expressed in conversation, in letters, printed essays, or in the elementary books of public right, as Aristotle, Cicero, Locke, Sidney, &c..."If those ideas and 'harmonizing sentiments' or the 'elementary books of public right' are foreign to you, then you necessarily stand mute before them, making you intellectually, and spiritually, foreign to America, no matter what the legal status of your physical ties to its 'blood and soil' are.
Am I being too harsh in this? If we look about the land today, what evidence do we find for the sentiment that 'We are Americans first'? If we look to Charlottesville, Virginia, for instance, what did we see on display there last weekend? When I look at the center of these heinous events, I'm seeing prime reasons for the fears that I'm talking about, as racist, socialist, anti-American sentiments were on display in abundance, with very few visible examples of those 'Harmonizing Sentiments' which are what made it possible for the contents of our melting pot, to want to see themselves as being "Americans first."
- Looking to 'The Right', we see, the Alt-Right, KKK (an organization formed at the end of the Civil War by Democrats, after losing a war against those harmonizing sentiments of the Declaration of Independence), neo-nazi racists, who by their very claims to being superior to others by virtue of being born as, and where, they were ('blood & soil'), are the fervent antithesis to what it means to be an American - they hold explicitly anti-American beliefs - seriously, it doesn't get much more anti-American than holding a goddamned Nazi fire light parades (which, BTW, they had a lawful permit to do, and which Govt has no power to prevent (see 1st Amdt)), and they were carrying out this abomination on American soil, through a college, while claiming to be 'standing up' for something called 'white culture'. Having read some examples of what they mean by that, I can say that such notions of culture as theirs, have more to do with what's grown in a untended Petri dish, than with those achievements of Western Culture that they are likely attempting to appropriate, and to take credit for by virtue of their 'blood & soil'.
- Looking to 'The Left', we see 'counter-demonstrators' which include supporters of Black Lives Matter, who include racists who call for days without whites, and demand reparations by virtue of being black... IOW, they make claims of being entitled to privileges which others do not, by virtue of being born as, and where, they were ('blood & soil'), which is also the fervent antithesis to what it means to be an American (a status which can only be had by understanding and choice) who came to Charlottesville from across the country, for the purpose of using force and violence to oppose, disrupt and shut down a lawfully permitted demonstration (which, BTW, is a criminal and fascistic tactic), and to show their opposition to the white racists - not for being racists, as they themselves are racist as well, but for favoring the 'wrong' color code in their racist stance - they are a rival team in the same league - while also claiming to 'stand up' for either nihil no culture (Antifa or Black Bloc Anarchists), or for something called 'black culture'... and again, such notions of culture have more to do with what develops in a Petri dish, than with what the likes of a Martin Luther King, George Washington Carver or Fredrick Douglas, would've recognized as being worthwhile culture (which for them, was Western Culture).
- Looking to 'The Left', and to 'The Right', we see among the protesters and 'counter-demonstrators' of BLM, Antifa, KKK, Alt-Right, a vociferous opposition to the idea 'that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights', a violent opposition to the right of freedom of Speech and the willingness to use violence to suppress it, and violent opposition to the right to peaceful assembly and association, opposition to banking, free trade and a free market, under our Constitution and an objective Rule of Law. All sides have a fervent support for one variant or another, on the theme of the socialistic centralization of power, in opposition to upholding individual rights and property rights for all, under a constitutional Rule of Law, to promote the interests of a favored few.
But of course we shouldn't confine our search to Charlottesville alone - how about if we expand our search to those governing our nation? Bad news there too, for we've got members of Congress there who're begging for our attention, as was clearly and forcefully demonstrated earlier in the same week, when a sitting United States Congresswomen, one who has a seat on the 'Homeland Security' board, 'came out' on Twitter to declare that the NRA, because of the viral ad campaign of its spokesperson Dana Loesch, that they are all '... quickly becoming a domestic security threat'!
I'm just going to say it. #NRA & @DLoesch are quickly becoming domestic security threats under President Trump. We can't ignore that.— Kathleen Rice (@RepKathleenRice) August 11, 2017
Such comments go far beyond simple political partisanship. This Representative, elected into the United States Government, who is directly and indirectly, representative of a sizable portion of our populace, is denouncing large swaths of her fellow members of We The People, for exercising some of those individual rights that are protected under the 1st Amendment, those of speech and association, in order to protect those rights of baring arms in self defense that are protected by the 2nd Amendment, Amendments which were first formulated to embody the 'harmonizing sentiments of the day', and which We The People insisted be amended to our Constitution, in order for it to be ratified. IOW, for defending those causal principles of America, and for calling out those who are abusing those rights which the Bill of Rights were placed there to defend, for that, Dana Loesch, and every member of the NRA, are being afrighted by officials of the Govt that was established to uphold and defend those very rights, as being potential domestic security threats.
Well, you might say, what if we look to that area of private enterprise that's specifically protected under our Constitution, the Press? Unfortunately, in at least one of those institutions that enjoys the 1st Amendments protections for 'freedom of the press', the New York Times, has also blatantly taken up the attack upon both Dana and the NRA, for their criticizing the shabbiness of their work, by deliberately misconstruing a word in their promise to 'Fisk the New York Times' ('Fisk' being an Internet term which means to conduct a line-by-line cross examination of a statement), as being their intention to do sexual violence by means of 'fisting' the New York Times (!). And we needn't look too hard to find reams of similar comments and sentiments, being expressed in the Washington Post, the electronic news media, the entertainment industry, Academia, and so on.
So, we've got members of the Govt that are actively opposing its own citizens the exercising their rights as protected under the 1st Amdt, in defense of those rights protected under the 2nd Amdt, and we have representatives of that institution which the Constitution specifically protects in order to exercise whatever oversight is needed to keep Govt in its place, the Press, who are joining in on the undermining and abusing of those central individual rights that are protected under their patron 1st Amendment.
If supporters of the NRA are threats, it is not to America, but to those alien ideas that are seeking to displace it, in the open minds of those who no longer see themselves as Americans first.
But wait, there's more! When President Trump first spoke about the evil events in Charlottseville,
"We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence, on many sides.", he was rebuked for not naming every particular organization devoted to hatred, bigotry and violence, and similarly picked over on each subsequent comment. But most of all, he's being criticized for daring to observe that there was bad behavior on each side. We also have, not only the usual suspects in the MSM, but seemingly every republican politician eager to preen and primp their moral outrage before the voting public, because Trump dared to note the FACT that there was bad behavior on all sides. IOW, feelings trump truth. That too, is incompatible with being 'Americans first'.
If these people were a mere minority among a majority of people who do understand that 'We are all Americans first', then we'd expect to see evidence of a majority of people who were educated in those 'harmonizing sentiments' of the Declaration of Independence, and familiar with the hard and difficult two centuries of history between then and now, who would be willing and able to call these frauds out for their intellectual equivalence of stolen valor - Right? You'd expect that they would be able to say loudly and proudly, that if you don't believe in individual rights for all, then you are all wrong. Period.
But there is hardly a peep. Oh sure, some of them (if easily portrayed as 'the right') are denounced, but there are no actual reasons given, only cheap partisan name calling, and there's a reason for that - one wing, BLM/Antifa, is but the mirror reflection of the other, Alt-Right/Neo-Nazi, on either side of a monstrous and tyrannical core.
There is no justification for either group, from either wing, or for anyone else who clings to such an ignorant and primitive rage as racism is, as a cause to rally their lives around, and are unworthy of tainting the blood and soil of this land that has been hallowed by the blood of those who struggled, fought and died for its ideals, not its mud. But having no justification for their views, is not the same thing as having no right to them, or that our Constitution doesn't protect their right to be unrighteous - they do, and it does, and central to being an American, is understanding that.
These people, the racists, the neo-Nazis, the Alt-Right, Rep. Rice and the New York Times, and those members of We The People who are aligned with them, do not seem to me to understand what is meant by 'We are all Americans'. Who these people are, are the unappetizing leftovers of what naturally remains of humanity, when those higher ideals of justice and liberty that are the culmination of 3,000 years of Greco/Roman-Judeo/Christian history, ideals which America was formed in order to exemplify, are absent from the minds of those who are 'American' by 'blood and soil' alone.
And leading the effort to actively remove those ideals and all they depend upon, have been the pro-regressive Left in our colleges, the pro-regressive Right in our business leaders, and their respective government functionaries, who've all been eager to reap easy political gains through the lucrative process of scholastically de-Americanizing America of Americans.
On the bright side (brightness being a relative term, when surrounded by darkness), they do look absolutely ridiculous as they attempt to appropriate the appearances of Western decency and manners, as the Left dons pink pussy hats and vagina costumes to protest the crude behavior of the President, as the Alt-Right marches for 'pride' while emulating friggin' Nazis (!), while 'The Right' claims to be fighting for what's right, after having taken Jonathan Gruber's bargain of ObamaCare for the power to put their own pragmatic stamp upon it, as long as they can be the ones in control over its power, over you.
No, unfortunately, I'm sorry to say, that wherever I look, to 'The Left', or to 'The Right', or to entertainment, academia, or to our own government, I don't find an over abundance of people who think of themselves as 'Americans first', but only people who have accustomed us to a new normal of violent anti-Americanism, where this new freedom of sincere violence, over freedom of speech, is to now be found acceptable across the land. These 'Left' and 'Right' wings being spread in the spirit of Lenin and Hitler, do not rest, and they do not in any way sit separated at either end of a long European scale, but are visibly joined together around a narrow body of a monstrous core belief in centralizing power to 'do good' to those who must endure it, whose 'left' wing and 'right' wing are in 'principle' in full agreement, and separated only by narrow particular preferences, such as which color to champion, and which flavor of totalitarianism, to impose - they are, as I said above, but rival teams in the same wannabe totalitarian league.
We have degraded, discarded and turned our back upon those concepts and ideas which formed the laws that America was formed from. And as God told the Israelites, when they chose to follow a King, rather than The Law he gave them -
'You're on your own.'The disasters that will follow the vanishing Americans, will be unavoidable self fulfilling sophistries, unless we again learn what being an American means, and then be able again to see ourselves as being Americans first, which leaves plenty of room for our many arguments to follow after that. Someone unironically asked "Can't we all just get along?", and the answer is 'No, we can't', which is the reason why we have a government formed from our Constitution, so that, no matter how ridiculous or despicable that I might think that you are, your right to be that isn't threatened by my disapproval of you. That is central to being an American, and there can be no America, without that understanding being first in our minds.
We have to fix that first, or we can fughedaboudit.
The most tragic part is, that it is ridiculously easy to fix that, to harmonize our sentiments with those 'elementary books of public right', but only if we first admit to having the problem, that we are not now a people who see themselves as being Americans first.
I just hope that enough of us do still want to be.