Where Are The Patriots?
Where are the patriots? Where are the conservative Republicans who have shouted and pounded their fists for patriotism? Why are they conspicuously absent in the face of an attack on America’s democracy? Those same people are there, but they are mostly silent or they are making excuses for why our President-elect is in denial. They once roared like lions, but today their voices can barely be heard. A foreign power with hostile intent toward the United States has undermined our fundamental system of democracy and these once-claimed-to-be patriots are huddling in the darkness, their voices barely audible.
As of this writing, we have declared additional sanctions against Russia and that’s an overdue and overly mild response to a very serious attack. Putin has shrewdly responded by doing nothing until Donald Trump becomes President. Clearly, it is Putin’s belief that he can continue to manipulate the new President Trump with even greater ease than he has President Obama. In one of the greatest shows of presidential weakness we have ever witnessed, Donald Trump says we should let this attack go and move on. Every patriot should stand up to this feeble response and demand that we stand up to Russia. Of course it could be that Trump’s position is much more carefully calculated than it appears and not just out of weakness or naiveté. After all, his family businesses could stand to make billions by creating a special relationship with our enemy, Russia and while the interests of the United States and its national security would suffer, the Trump family could dramatically further its wealth and influence. Whatever the motivation, where are the patriots?
What of respect for the men and women of our armed forces? Where does this love affair between their soon-to-be commander and chief and their sworn enemy leave them? They must stand ready to respond to the many threats posed by an ever more aggressive Russian military, yet they must listen to a President-elect tell them the public how wonderful the leader of that military is. Where are the patriots who should be standing up for our armed forces?
[December 29, 2016 update insert – I had to provide this insert as an update as we just learned of Trump’s reaction to Putin’s temporarily neutral position on Obama’s lenient sanctions against. Once again the President-elect has chosen to kiss the feet of America’s enemy by heaping praise on the Russian President.]
The truth is, real patriotic Americans know the answer(s). First of all, those missing patriots weren’t necessarily patriots to begin with. At best they were nationalists with allegiance to a pseudo-conservative ideology dictated by a carefully crafted talk-radio script financed by an ultra-elite establishment furthering its own power and wealth. It has worked well for them. If one follows only Fox News and conservative talk radio, one gets a very narrow view of what is happening in the world. It is a view that lays the groundwork for the acceptance of fake news, a major contributor to the national ignorance and an effective tool in swaying the ignorant. After all, so called conservative talk radio has been the primary provider of fake news for decades and it is only recently that we are calling it what it is, but it remains accepted as news and the truth by millions of mind-dead Americans. It has fostered hatred of people in place of legitimate dialogue about issues. It has rendered cooperative problem solving impossible. It has undermined our search for knowledge in place of a repetitive demand for allegiance to a nonsensical set of absolute rules.
It is in this environment that we have elected a child in a man’s body to be our next President of The United States of America. Before the election many conservatives argued that despite his obvious ignorance on most issues of domestic and international affairs, he would be open to the wise counsel of his advisors once in office. Now we see that not only are his choices for counsel not so wise, but that he is continuing to ignore them anyway. We now know him better and what we know is far from flattering. He is thin-skinned and easily offended, yet he berates people continuously. That seems to be because he doesn’t actually have a reasonable counter argument to things he may not like and like is the key word. He clearly operates on the basis of what he likes and what he doesn’t and who he likes and who he doesn’t. Vladimir Putin helped him with the election and may make his family richer in the future, so he likes Vladimir. He is not the least bothered by the damage Putin would likey lay upon the United States as long as it serves the interest of the Trump family and the image of Donald Trump himself. Where is the outrage from all those so-called patriots?
Some conservatives have come forward with demands that we investigate further and deal effectively with Russia while the nationalists, more interested in justifying their vote for Trump, have been whining and posturing in hopes of justifying the weakness of our President-elect. People like Mitch McConnell and John McCain (neither of which you will like if you are a liberal) have long ago distinguished themselves as patriots. Now they have come forward to demand that we not cower in the face of Russia’s aggression and that we look at the hacking with seriously objective eyes even if our President-elect doesn’t have the stomach for it. We who really believe in America and the way of life our founders intended should stand behind the patriots and not the arrogant child.