At Intelligent Discontent, Don Pogreba makes the case that liberals are patriots, too. I don’t have much quarrel with anything he says there, but I was struck once again that patriotism seems to be the default position of conservatives, with liberals just hoping to tag along.
Sometimes I think that’s just backward, especially when I’m listening to talk radio around the Fourth of July. Of course, liberal voices are rarely heard in the world of talk radio, so you have to make do with what you can find, in other words, NPR.
This year, it was the same old story: NPR ran a string of stories celebrating America’s traditions and history, from an 11-year-old’s recitation of the Gettysburg Address to a search for the Great American Symphony. Talk radio? Same old, same old. Obama’s destroying the country; liberals are what’s wrong with America; American government is too weak and too strong and too oppressive and too mealy mouthed.
I’m not saying that criticizing the president is unpatriotic. Criticism of the government is older than America. But I am saying that the founders were onto something when they decided to set aside one day a year when we overlook our differences, celebrate our achievements, and reflect on the hard work and sacrifices that got us here.
If all you had to judge America on was what you could hear on the radio, you would have to conclude that liberals are the only true patriots this country has.