Celebrate 4th of July by putting away the flags
On this July 4, we would do well to renounce nationalism and all its symbols:
its flags, its pledges of allegiance, its anthems, its insistence in song that
God must single out America to be blessed.
Is not nationalism -- that devotion to a flag, an anthem, a boundary so fierce it engenders mass murder -- one of the great evils of our time, along with racism, along with religious hatred?....
....We invaded Cuba in 1898 to liberate the Cubans, and went to war in the Philippines shortly after, as President McKinley put it, "to civilize and Christianize" the Filipino people.
As our armies were committing massacres in the Philippines (at least 600,000 Filipinos died in a few years
of conflict), Elihu Root, our secretary of war, was saying: "The American
soldier is different from all other soldiers of all other countries since
the war began. He is the advance guard of liberty and justice, of law and
order, and of peace and happiness."
We see in Iraq that our soldiers are not different. They have, perhaps against their better nature, killed thousands of Iraq civilians. And some soldiers have shown themselves capable of brutality, of torture.Yet they are victims, too, of our government's lies....
....We need to assert our allegiance to the human race, and not to any one nation.
On that note, Happy 4th of July, the US Independence Day, to those decent Americans who respect the independence of other nations as much as their own.