Monthly Archives: February 2003

Patriotism, stupid

“It is unpatriotic to accuse other people unpatriotic.”

I was quite amused when I noticed that everyone was beginning to say “I am patriotic” before they were going to voice their opinion on Bush’s war on Iraq.

I was also quite happy that I didn’t need to say “I am patriotic ” before I say anything.

I haven’t expected such a scenario would arise in America. I have thought US should have already got this issue resolved. But thinking of Americans even elected Bush as the president, I shouldn’t be too surprised. I felt the same way as Bill Clinton had felt. When a country feels an immediate danger (no matter whether it is a real danger or a fake danger), people more easily turn to those who are brave but wrong than to those who are right but weak. The pattern is so similar to what we have in China. I don’t know if America has gone through about 150 years’ of war, as China has gone through, whether America will be just like the present China, which is often accused by some Americans.

Since patriotism became an issue here in America, I would like to say something about it. While I was in China, I, and people like me are often accused for unpatriotic. But I think at least I can prove that I used to be very patriotic. Here is a story.

When I was a kid, we used to play the game of ants. We made ants fighting with each other. After we pulled off the antennas of the ants, they became mad (I guess) and cannot recognize other ants. So when you put two ants together, they started to bite each other until one is seriously injured or dead. When we were playing this game, we often make two teams of ants. One team of ants are all strong and big. This is of course the Chinese team. The other team of ants are all thin and small. That is the Japanese team. As we have expected, the Chinese team always win. So you can see how much we love our motherland when we were kids.

I am still the same person who used to play the game of ants. But as I grew up, I learned to love my country in an adult way, not still in the childish way. However I feel many people around me are still expressing their patriotism in the childish way. Continue reading

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Filed under Cross Culture Communication, Essay, Liberal Arts