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View Diary: A pacifist on nationalism (67 comments)

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  •  Pacifism can be patriotic. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    isabelle hayes, Sailorben

    That's the best kind of patriotism actually.

    The counterargument to all of this is Scottish nationalism. Where British nationalism has been the flag waving imperialistic variety, Scottish nationalism has become the anti-imperialist, anti-war, anti-racism civic nationalism. The perfect example of that is Bashir Ahmad, the first non-white,  first non-christian, and first muslim member of the Scottish Parliament. He was a member of the Scottish National Party. Though he passed on a few years ago, there are young Scottish people of color carrying that vision of Scotland forward, people like Humza Yousaf.

    Just doing a quick survey of the music of Scottish nationalism you have anti war and anti racist sentiments all over the place.

    There's the anti-military Tir an Airm, "Welcome to the land of the Army."

    [Video with English Lyrics]

    There's Capercaillie's  equally anti-military "Don't you go" with the line "The Army and the Navy, they never will agree til all the men and all the boys are gone from my country," which speaks of the heavy recruitment of Scottish people into the British military.

    There's anti war and anti military statements in the Freedom Come all Ye, a patriotic song from the great Hamish Henderson: "Broken families in the lands we've harried will curse Scotland the Brave no more, no more, black and white to each other married make the vile barracks of their masters bare..."

    There's music from the Jacobite Rebellions that are still remembered, Mo Run Geal Og, hurls curses on Charles Stewart and on war itself.

    Mo Rùn Gael Òg by Capercaillie on Grooveshark
    [Lyrics w/ Translation]

    We see then that patriotism is a tool that can be used by any party. I would say that peace is patriotic. We were once a nation that was proud of the fact that we did not have, and did not need, a standing Army. That is a forgotten part of American patriotism. I would say that we need to re-claim our national identity from the warmongers.

    Because those ideas exist in our music too:

    America! America! God shed his grace on thee!
    Til selfish gain no longer stain the banner of the free!

    Pacifists should feel comfortable waving those flags, because peace is patriotic. More patriotic than war.

    War is a last resort. War weakens us. What makes us stronger is to work with other nations, to build friendships, and to build each other up. To grow sustainably, economically, intellectually, and culturally.

    War doesn't achieve any of those goals.

    An Fhirinn an aghaidh an t'Saoghail. (The truth against the world.) Is treasa tuath na tighearna. (The common people are mightier than the lords.)

    by OllieGarkey on Mon Dec 24, 2012 at 09:49:40 AM PST

    •  I tell that to some of my more right wing friends (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      OllieGarkey

      and they act like I would allow Al-Qaeda to come into their bedroom at night and kill them.  One of them was a military contractor, and he thinks that basically the shadow war is what keeps world peace.  Like I said, pacifism doesn't always work, but if you want a strong country you should, I dunno, focus on your own people.

      "Holding on to anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die," - Buddha.

      by sujigu on Mon Dec 24, 2012 at 10:01:09 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Exactly. And there's a kind of civic, rather than (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        isabelle hayes

        ethnic, nationalism that's all about that.

        The idea of who we are as a people. In America, that's our immigrant heritage, and the idea that we take care of our own. When combined, "our own" means everyone. E Pluribus Unum and all that.

        That means something, and without left-wing flag waving patriotism, that part of our identity as Americans withers,
        and what's left is this kind of militant fascist nonsense that would make our founding fathers ill to behold.

        An Fhirinn an aghaidh an t'Saoghail. (The truth against the world.) Is treasa tuath na tighearna. (The common people are mightier than the lords.)

        by OllieGarkey on Mon Dec 24, 2012 at 10:55:01 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  And I DONT mean civil religion, either! (0+ / 0-)

          An Fhirinn an aghaidh an t'Saoghail. (The truth against the world.) Is treasa tuath na tighearna. (The common people are mightier than the lords.)

          by OllieGarkey on Mon Dec 24, 2012 at 10:55:43 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

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