Guy sits on an exam table in front of a doctor.
“Doc, it’s my knee. The thing is killing me.”
“I’m a little more concerned about this four-pound tumor on the back of your head, Bob.”
“Heck with that. It’s the knee, doc, it’s the knee.”
The current rally point for the American Idol-conditioned citizenry is whether or not a gaggle of sporting behemoths should stand while somebody sings a crummy old saloon song. (Really, if there is to be a national anthem, they picked this one? Did anybody check with Kate Smith?)
Naturally, the president seized on the opportunity, taking to his Tweeter account to lambast the un-American NFL squatters, further polarizing the two largest demographics in the land: Group A: the spoiled rotten delinquents who forgot to take their daily ritalins, and Group B: the disenfranchised Pollyannas who still cling to fond memories of days long gone by, desperately hoping Donald J. Trainwreck can somehow lead them back to the days of wine, roses and Camelot.
Group B elicits some measure of sympathy, if only because they’re generally better behaved. They’re also clinging to and pining for what no longer is. The American culture they once knew has been shattered into millions of multicultural pieces, so much so, that there remains no longer a definitive American culture. All we have now is a really big shattered mirror, with millions of narcissists holding their piece, trying to figure why everyone doesn’t see the same picture they do.
Alas, whatever culture we had is long gone. The Cleavers and Cartwrights have exited the scene, being replaced by “Biggie And Tupac: What Really Happened?”
What we have now are pockets of a bygone culture in assorted places across the land, mostly in rural areas. But such values have been swallowed up and replaced by millions of different ideals in a culture that was built on the sandy premise of individual determination. Really, it’s always been every man for himself, and today we see the natural manifestation of that.
But lots of Americans want to feel the swell of the patriot’s pride, and frown on anybody else who takes a knee when old glory is raised. After all, don’t the kneelers have any respect at all for what the flag represents?
Group A is likely un-salvageable. What those in Group B need to realize is they are fine with having the parameters of the patriotism micro-managed by Washington politicians. They puke out policy decisions, declare this war or that war, raise the flag, and Group B falls in line, standing, removing their hats and singing along.
After the unfortunate second world war, the American government sought a new villain which turned out to be the stumbling and staggering Soviet bear, which had seen over 20 million of its citizens lost during the war.
So, we had a new whipping boy and Truman oversaw the birth of the CIA and other top-heavy government agencies. William F. Buckley (of all people) called it a “totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores.” The government developed a hideous National Security state, which included what Eisenhower correctly warned us all about: a massive, ever-growing military-industrial complex.
1991 demonstrated what a shell the USSR was, but not to fear. 9/11 would serve well to further ensconce the role of government-as-god for security-starved Americans.
So in desperation, Group B clutches hold of Trump’s Chinese necktie, praying he can somehow bring the Cleavers back. In so doing, they forge an alliance with the devil. It isn’t the knee-benders who are the problem, neither is their lack of patriotism. This is a non-issue. The real issues are crimes by government, with Donald J. Corleone manning the controls as he continues the BushObama policies of perpetual war, and the growth of the State. To this, they plight their troth.
Cultural matters aside, Group B needs to re-evaluate the definition of their patriotism. Is their allegiance actually to liberty, or is it to government? If it is to the former, then why do they cheer every time the government waves a flag in their face and ostensibly demand their affections, all while taking not only their liberties, but those of others on the planet? Is it really patriotic to support a government which drops bombs on Christians who are attending Easter services?
In short, what is patriotism? How is defined? Devotion to liberty or devotion to government? Is anyone actually making the argument the American government is devoted to liberty? Where are the Trump tweets calling for the slicing and dicing of the federal bureaucracy? Instead, we hear praise for the CIA, and calls to further expand the military and police.
This is liberty?
Trump uses the kneelers to his own advantage, like a conquistador waves a red flag in front of the bull, and most everyone stares dutifully at the red white and blue flag, while Trump gives $200 billion to the Saudis, ramps up a war in Afghanistan, and bashes the one senator trying to deliver us from the nightmare of Obamacare.
“But hey! Those thugs are kneeling while the anthem is being played!”
The cultural problem is solved by changing channels on a TV that sits in a home far, far away from any American city. And as for voting, it’s better to support a candidate who doesn’t know where Aleppo is.
Because if he doesn’t know where it is, he can’t bomb it.