Thursday, October 18, 2007

These Are My People

Orson Scott Card pens another excellent (although all too infrequent) essay on the Stupid People that our Left smart guys disdain:

I'm of the generation that was too smart for patriotism. It was called "flag-waving" and it was sneered at. Politicians who invoked it were chauvinists, jingoists, cynical exploiters of trite public sentiment.

Then a funny thing happened. Patriotism, the thing that the Smart People all inveighed against, disappeared. Not everywhere -- just among the Smart People. It was a motivation that other people had. Strange people that the Left never actually met.

Oh, when you say the Smart People aren't patriotic, they get so angry and righteous! Suddenly they wave the flag and say, "How dare you impugn my patriotism!" As soon as they've silenced their critics, of course, they flush their "patriotism" down the toilet; it's a flimsy garment that, if you get up close, you can easily see through.

I have been that close, many times; I have hung out with the Smart People and listened to them talk. I've heard them jeer at patriotism, mock the military, sneer at ordinary Americans who shop in malls and watch television. Their contempt for the Stupid People is so thick and deep that if the target of this hatred were members of a minority group, we'd know them for the bigots they are.

They deny it, like Klan members pretending not to know what you're talking about.

Meanwhile, the Stupid People who believe in patriotism and volunteer for the military -- they're not a minority, they're the majority. They still have the power to elect presidents and change the makeup of Congress. And since the Smart People try to avoid ever meeting or spending time with any of these Stupid People, the only thing they can do to get control of the parts of the American power structure they don't already own is to lie.

The Smart People don't even think they're lying, though. They don't count it as a sin (they don't even believe in sin) to lie to Stupid People. It's sort of the Santa Claus principle. You tell them whatever you need to tell them in order to get them to let you have your way.

You tell them we're losing a war we're winning. You tell them that the best-behaved army in history is routinely committing atrocities. You tell them that the war that has the lowest rate of civilian casualties in history, proportionate to the number of combatants, is the cruelest. You tell them that a fully justified war based on many principles of international law and historical precedent is "based on a lie."

That's the favorite one. Your best lie. You accuse the Stupid President of lying all the time, though in fact that's the Smart People's primary tactic. Like pretending that Rush Limbaugh meant something that he obviously didn't mean and making a huge deal about it -- while declining to condemn the outrageous lies of MoveOn.Org as they slander a fine commander.

The biggest lie in this little flap about Limbaugh is not what they say about Limbaugh. It's their pretense that they actually care about American soldiers.

They don't care. Give me a break. Most of these Smart People are so filled with bile about the military that when they actually meet a soldier in uniform they are revolted or frightened or angry.

Nobody that they know ever enlists in the military. Since patriotism doesn't exist in their social circles, they have to invent other motivations for people to become soldiers.

It's like science fiction to them. Soldiers are an alien species. These people must love violence, that's what it is. Or they're such losers they can't think of another career. Or they're bullies. Or simply stupid, so that recruiters can trick them.

Yes, we Stupid Americans love our country. We believe it is worth defending. The sight of our nation's flag flying on a sunny day is moving in ways that Smart Americans cannot comprehend. Even now, I feel deprived of a privilege because as a civilian I can no longer salute our flag as I did when in uniform and must simply place my right hand over my heart. That's pretty stupid, eh?

Serving in the military has never been common, even in World War II when our forces peaked at 12 million. It is even less common today. Yet I served in the Army National Guard. My brothers served in the Army and Air Force. My dad served in the Navy. My grandfathers served in the Army and National Guard. Nobody made a career of the military, but all served.

Yes indeed, Stupid Americans, all. And I'm proud to stand among them, though the Smart Americans disdain us all and our simple love of country that isn't so nuanced as to think that dissent to the extent it promotes our defeat is actually the highest form of patriotism. Stupid us, we thought patriotism consisted of putting on our nation's uniforms and swearing to defend it against all enemies.

That's what Stupid Americans do and have always done. That's why we are free. God help us if we run out of Stupid Americans and have to rely on the self-described Smart People.

Card has much more. Read it all.