I am a nationalist.
There it is, naked in black and white, and my younger self who believed all the lies about nationalism leading to war is cringing a little in the back of my brain.
But actually, the important thing here is: why wouldn’t I be a nationalist? Or, if you prefer it spun another way: why would someone who has left her place of birth and the family and connections there, who had to acculturate to a new land, and who finally became a citizen of that land not be a nationalist? What sense does that even make?
And what is one a “nationalist” in opposition to? Internationalists? And what is internationalism, precisely?
I know what it used to be. It used to be another word for Russian (disguised as Soviet) nationalism. The same people who hated their own lands of birth and residence were mad in love with Russia and its “accomplishments.” They often learned Russian and would talk your ear off about the glories of the Russian people. Only instead of moving to the place they had a crush on, like normal human beings, they wanted to bring it to you.
Since the Soviet Union fell and Russia became the scapegoat for 2016, what is internationalism really?
Well, they’ll say it’s open borders, and caring for the poor in the world, or something like that. They’ll also tell you they’re citizens of the world, and act all superior, as though there was actually such a thing as “citizenship” of the world. Or that one should be proud to call home both Somalia and Syria as well as all the other halfway decent nations as well as the sh*tholes of the world, which vastly outnumber them. The only answer to “citizen of the world” is “I too like to claim made-up identifies. What world are you a citizen of? I like Xerps.”
As for open borders, please note none of them has ever said anything about, oh, Mexico’s borders, which (save when they act as conduits for “caravans”) are far more closed than ours. No one has ever said that, oh, China should have no borders. No, when people claim they’re for open borders, the borders they want open are those of the U.S. and other Western states.
And while there’s a lot to be said – from a freedom perspective – about the free movement of people and humans living where they wish to live, it should be preceded by “in an ideal world.”
As in, in an ideal world, human beings should be able to live, work, and thrive wherever they prefer.
But we don’t live in an ideal world. Demanding that we act as though we did is as rational as demanding that the human species become amenable to “perfect communism.”
None of this works that way.
Humans are not widgets, nor are cultures. Humans are products of cultures. As someone who went through acculturation, it is neither easy nor instant. You don’t come to America and, voila, become an American. Nor do you become an American in the time before they allow you to apply for citizenship. Which is why I took an extra two years to work through it before I naturalized.
As is, I think I acculturated far faster than would have been the case if, say, my family had immigrated as a family, or – forbid the thought, but it has happened – the entire village had immigrated. I think in those cases three generations is a good case scenario. However let me tell you, even as an individual, with no relatives here but my American husband, with no friends or contacts from the “old country,” it wasn’t easy, and at times felt like going insane. This is a lot to ask of the average person who just wants to come over for a job or educational opportunities, or whatever.
And yet, it is essential to the whole concept of “you move wherever you want.” If the second part of that is not “and you fit in, and become one of them,” then what you’re doing is destroying the cultures that created the richer countries, which are attracting people. It’s a great way to make the whole world a vast sh*thole.
And that’s before taking into account things like welfare and other services, which are already freely given to illegal immigrants. (Don’t tell me they aren’t. I have friends in medicine, in education, in the justice system. A great part of the reason we’re bleeding money is that all these give for free to interlopers what they buy with the taxes of the citizens. And no, no one has ever proven that these people create more than they take. In fact, at least since Obama’s presidency, we’ve been infected with a particularly toxic brand of dead-enders, who come here and just expect to get everything because we’re exploiters and privileged — and shut up, hater.)
You cannot have open borders and a welfare state. Not only will you attract a lot more immigrants than would otherwise want to live in your country, but you’ll attract immigrants who want to freeload.
Oh, and by the way, let me reiterate that it’s suicidal to open your door to all cultures when some cultures are toxic. Tribalism is probably the most toxic of aspects in any culture, and despite the left’s efforts, the west succeeds largely by not being tribal. But there are others. In many cultures, it is shameful to work, or shameful to save, or social credit and the distributing of one’s wealth to relatives is more important than producing or creating or inventing. And yeah, I know, the multiculturalists will say that’s all alike, but it’s not. The west is proof it’s not. Without the west, Earth would still support only 1/10th of the humans it supports, and they’d be much less well fed, healthy or wealthy.
So, internationalism being a pipe dream at best, or at worst a way to kill your own country by opening your door to less-functional cultures, en masse, what is wrong with nationalism?
To my mind absolutely nothing.
I find it bizarre that the left equates nationalism with white supremacism. It’s like they grew up in a closet where the only thing they ever saw were Nazi propaganda films. One wants to open the closet door, drag them out, slap them silly, and scream: “America is not Germany, nor indeed any European country.”
You might follow it up with a tour of any of our cities, large and small, where people of all colors and in between shades live and trade together. (No, that’s not multiculturalism, either. We’d probably need to explain to the left that culture isn’t skin color. They never seem to get that either.)
To be proud of America, and wish it to prosper, and think it is the best of nations, is not followed by “but only the white people in it.” Nope. One on one and man on man, or in my case woman on woman, I’d take one of my countrymen over just about any random person of another country. For various reasons, having to do with the desire to strive, the desire to work, the respect for laws, the interest in a peaceable community.
Are all those conditioned? Sure. Do we have very bad people? Sure. But so do other countries. It’s rather that the software in the heads of those who are decent human beings seems to work better in America. Or at least it works more in accord with what I like and makes sense to me. Which is why I’m here.
The left also believes the canard I used to believe that nationalism equals warmongering. This, bizarrely, is the notion most of Europe took from World War I, and we grew up watching movies of the coming of WWI in which the cause was how proud of their countries people were.
It’s a lovely theory except for two things: that’s not how war happens, as in ever, and, oh yeah, it’s not true.
WWI happened for all sorts of complex (and weird) reasons, and a perfect storm of economic and other issues. However, if you had to pinpoint a cause, “stupid international alliances” is probably more of a culprit than “nationalism.”
Nationalism, under good regulation (i.e. being quietly convinced of our own homeland’s superiority), doesn’t lead to war, unless one’s nation is in peril.
Yes, sure, nations will compete and sometimes competition will lead to war. Competition will always lead to war. We are a war-like species. Ape bands fight.
We’re not any better. If the world were one vast nation, the same competition and the same war would happen. And if you think it would be smaller, you’re not thinking right. The American Civil War rivals WWI for the number of people killed (relative to population).
War will happen and dead is dead, regardless of the entities involved, while humans are humans.
Meanwhile, there are other advantages to nationalism. John Lennon had it right in “Imagine” when he said that without nations (and religion, and whatever other nihilistic crap is in that trainwreck of a song) there would be “nothing to kill and die for.”
What he failed to realize is that if you have nothing kill or die for, you also have nothing to live for.
Take me, for instance: what would I kill and die for? Sure. Country and beliefs, religious or otherwise. But more immediately, I’d kill and die for my family.
Every day of the week and twice on Sunday. Remove them from existence, make them “never have been,” and suddenly I quite literally have nothing to live for.
In other words “man doesn’t live by bread alone.” Let’s face it, most humans are never going to set the world on fire; probably all of us, yours truly included, will be forgotten ten seconds after we’re dead; living for happiness is unrealistic as what makes you happy changes, and sooner or later we all become very unhappy in a way that can’t be fixed; living for your work is at best sterile, and for most people stupid, as most people’s work is not a vocation; living for yourself has proven its sterility these last fifty years.
I understand we’re in the middle of a “suicide crisis” with suicides multiplying astonishingly.
Well, in a religiously divided country like ours, where at any rate religion has been further de-emphasized, where nationalism is “forbidden” and vilified, and where family and marriage are increasingly rare things, what do you expect?
What do people have to live for?
I don’t care that, despite my voluminous writings (what a thing to be remembered for, anyway) I’ll most likely be forgotten except by those nearest and dearest shortly after death. I don’t care, because I’m working for my children, my grandchildren, and future Americans. I’m a cog in a very long chain of cogs, all leading to the future. My little part might be negligible, but I can do the best I can and take pride in being an American and working for the good of America.
I know – and can tell you – my dad, for instance, is animated with similar feelings for his family and Portugal. And that there are many such people all over the world.
And why not? Man doesn’t live by bread alone. Possibly even less does woman.
The craziness of evangelical SJWs, the self-centeredness and drama of the young, the refusal to sacrifice present happiness towards future betterment?
What else would they do, when all they have is the present and the passing fancies of the ego? Or the false promises of the gospel of hatred and envy that is the SJW philosophy? Why are we surprised that people are unhappy, unproductive, lost?
Sure, religion is one of the answers. But you’ll never – in a country the size of this – get everyone onboard with a religion, or any religion, for that matter.
But if you live here, if you are an American, what makes more sense than being proud of that, than feeling you belong, than taking your part in the vast endeavor of liberty that this country is engaged in?
What’s wrong with nationalism? That I can see, nothing.
I have no clue why anyone would be a French or Spanish or even a Portuguese nationalist. But I don’t have to. If it is their belief, their joy, their sense of belonging to be proud of their homelands, isn’t that better than living in dread and hatred of the only land you’ve known your whole life?
And isn’t loving your country a better reason for living than the envy of those who are better off than you, or dreams of exterminating all of a race or all of a sex (mostly whites and males) that the internationalist left vents on twitter?
I am a nationalist. This doesn’t mean I hate other countries. Only that I love the United States of America and will work towards furthering its interests over those of any other country.
Why wouldn’t I?