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Old 07-02-2007, 12:25 AM   #81
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Quote:
Originally posted by Teta040

What disturbs me is even more is that these days America, seems at least to need a war or conflcit, an enemy, to both define itself and test its citizens loyalty.
So true.
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Old 07-05-2007, 12:46 PM   #82
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Then there are a few people--sula's described something like this before I know--who, typically because of a very particular and rather unusual kind of upbringing, truly feel that they could be "at home" almost anywhere (and yet never feel "fully" at home anywhere at the same time). I can't really relate to that either, but as with the type of person who discovers their "true" home through what started out as a visit, I'd imagine it isn't in any meaningful way a kind of "moral" choice. Probably in a sense none of these are really moral decisions.
I don't think it's my upbrigning, but I've lived in several places and felt more "at home" than in America - and they were very, very different places. As Axver said way upthread, I don't love something as artificial as a country. I do have a deep sense of pride and admiration in the original ideas of America, and at the same time a great sense of disgust and alienation at what is presently going on (with democracy/elections, civil liberties, and foreign policy). I think the disgust and alienation contribute greatly to my happiness living elsewhere. I love love love my native city of Boston, and have great pride in it and feel a sense of community, but I have also felt very at home elsewhere (be it passing through or living for several months). In fact, the only place I've felt less at home in than America was Israel, where as a godless liberal Jew who works with refugees and believes Israel treats the Palestinians immorally, I was extremely alienated, but I also didn't come into contact with more liberal and secular Israelis while I was there.

So, there are things about America that I take great pride in, and things that make me feel responsible towards it (no matter where I live, I will always vote and stay informed, even if I get dual citizenship to an EU country). But I feel just as comfortable, if not more, in a variety of other settings, and as I still have a year of college tying me to America, I refer to myself as an ex-pat waiting to happen and have plans to move out as soon as I get my degree. (These are partially career related, though.) And I feel comfortable maybe because of political/moral alienation from America. Combined with Israel I guess you might say I dislike countries for political/moral reasons. But the reasons I like other places aren't moral or political, but more related to culture and people and way/pace of life. (Again I've enjoyed quite the variety of settings - I loved living in Vienna and in a refugee camp in Ghana, and I dearly miss them both.)
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Old 07-05-2007, 06:31 PM   #83
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Yes. I have the freedom to protest that damn war.
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Old 07-06-2007, 01:17 AM   #84
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Unless, of course, you're doing the protesting in a place and at a time where its very visibilty might make an impression or even a difference--like the Republican National Convention in NYC, say.
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Old 07-06-2007, 02:26 PM   #85
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I would say that I love my country. I love it because it is good to me. I love it because it's beautiful. I love it because its home. I love it because of its ideals, its success at incorporating newcomers without losing its identity. There's lots of great things about it.

I wouldn't die for it as in signing up for the army to fight a foreign war. Besides I am too old for all that now. But then again I was never the military type when I was young anyway.

However, if we were invaded that would be a different matter entirely. I would fight and die for it. I would pick up a gun and do my part because there would undoubtedly be those who are weaker than me who would need the help.

Call me a pacifist until someone is actually trying to kill me. Then I will fight to live and to protect those who can't defend themselves.
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