The Rabid Conservative

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What does Patriotism Look Like in the 21st Century

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So today, I had a Twitter argument with a couple of people who had this misconception that I was this psychotic, crazy lunatic who was ready to storm the Capitol with a gun because of what I considered breaches to my freedom. When I mentioned that I was a “patriot”, she and I had an exchange over what it meant to be a patriot.

In my view, a patriot is someone who is willing to do what it takes to preserve and defend his/her country from all enemies, foreign and domestic.  This person is willing to kill or die to keep their country together.

However, she and another took a different view.  She thought me crazy, that somehow, I was all for just killing people without giving peace a chance.  She simply could not, in her view, condone cold-blooded murder for the sake of an ideology. When I told her that I was willing to do what it took to preserve liberty and freedom, she seemed mortified at the prospect that would include taking someone’s life.

I was told, “well can’t we just vote for those who we believe will do the best job?”. My reply, “The bullet and the ballot go together.”

Today, the Iraqis lost control of Fallujah back to Al Qaeda and ISIL. There was no one there who was interested in defending it from the oppression of these people who, ten years ago, were driven out by the US during the Iraq invasion.  My debate opponent made the point that no one deserved to live under the oppression of Al Qaeda.

I took a different view. The way I see it, there are three ways that this situation will go:

  1. The Iraqis can fight for their own freedom. This is the way it should be. If people want freedom and liberty, they have to fight for it. They have to be willing to do whatever it takes to throw off the shackles of the oppression that Al Qaeda represents and live in freedom.
  2. They can surrender their own freedom and live under the rule of Al Qaeda. They may not like it, but if they don’t want it, but are not willing to fight for it, then they deserve to live under the black flag of Islamo-fascism.  In other words, if they are alright living under Al Qaeda control, then they have no right to complain or protest – they have chosen subjugation and deserve to be conquered.
  3. They can admit they are powerless and call on the outside world for help. Thing is, usually it ends up that America answers that call. The US military gets called in to handle the situation and by the blood of our men and women, a country gets its freedom – temporarily. But Al Qaeda has already gone all in on the notion that once we left, they would be coming back. And there they are.But after the outside force leaves, it’s up to the people to decide what to do with the freedom they have been given. Today, however, the people of Fallujah have chosen subjugation, because they certainly are not willing to take up arms against ISIL.

Going back in the Revolution, our forebears raised up arms because of 27 violations of life, liberty and the property by King George. Most of these things weren’t the atrocities that we see today with oppressive regimes like North Korea, China, or the Middle East, although the Declaration does make note of plundering of seas, ravaging of coasts, burning of towns, and destruction of the lives of the people.  Today, groups like Al Qaeda and ISIL are willing to kill anyone who doesn’t subscribe to their interpretation of Islam.  They ruthlessly rape and kill women, strap explosives onto children, and tell them this is “waging jihad in the will of Allah”.  They are oppressors of a different stripe.

Either way, be it the British, Al Qaeda, or those in government today that are slowly bleeding our liberties away through “regulation”, or “entitlement programs”. They are slowly attempting to disarm the citizens, either through so-called “gun control” or divesting their right to worship as they feel led.  These liberals in Washington are promoting homosexuality and secular humanism and bringing punishment against anyone who speaks against it as a “hate crime”.

If our Founders were alive today, they would be shooting now.

Right now, I don’t feel it is not the right time to raise up arms against those in Washington who continuously mandate that we surrender our liberty for someone else’s entitlement – not yet. There are still things that we can do peaceably to promote freedom and liberty. I think we can still influence the citizenry through grassroots movements and political activism. I believe we still have a lot of opportunities left in that regard.

Now with the subject of ObamaCare, I’m not going to participate. I’m not buying a plan, not going to pay the IRS’ tax, and not going to care who comes to my door. I’ve decided to opt out and put my trust in God, rather than government, to care for my and my family’s health.  Whatever the law says, I don’t care. I’m not playing.

But the way of peace may not always be the way. There may be a day when we’ve exhausted our last peaceful means and it will take a more forceful means to preserve liberty. Thomas Jefferson understood it like this:

“The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.”

I know this does not sit well with the people who believe in peace, love, and chicken grease (or veggie oil), but the people back in the 18th century knew that if they were going to keep their freedoms and liberties, they would have to strike back at the people who were keeping it from them.

Being a American Patriot is much more than raising a flag in the front yard and voting in November. It’s even more than working on someone’s campaign or donating money. It’s all about being willing to do whatever it takes to preserve American liberty and freedom. We all hope that we never have to pick up a weapon and harm another person. We all hope that we never have to see combat in our homes and fields. But the Patriot also knows and understands that it might happen that way. They don’t run and hide from that possibility, they “keep their powder dry”.

On one visit to Philadelphia, I stopped by the Free Quaker House, the old meeting hall of those Quakers, normally pacifistic in belief, who believed that the cause of liberty was too important to ignore.  Inside, there was a man, dressed in Quaker garb, who asked me:

Are you a Patriot?

Now, I know it was part of the tour, but that question struck a chord with me. As he was filling out a small card, noting me as a Patriot, his question resonated in my heart.  These Free Quakers were deeply concerned  about a conflict of conscience – taking up arms, but defending liberty and freedom.  And it made me ask myself, “would I be willing to give up life, liberty, and property to fight to protect these things for someone else?  Would I be willing to stand up for liberty and put my life in harm’s way?”

We don’t think about this in the same way today.  I think we take our liberty for granted, after over 200 years of freedom, we don’t really know what it took to secure that liberty. We just go about our lives without a second thought.  Perhaps that’s what the Founders hoped to see – a world where liberty was the way of things.  But I’m quite certain that the Founders never intended us to forget that liberty had a very high cost – blood.

We need to praise and thank God for our liberty and freedom; we must not take it for granted because there are plenty of people out there who would, if they could, take it from us and force us to live under their subjection.  This also means we have to stand ready against those who threaten that liberty – either though the ballot box, through discourse, or through the use of cold steel.

So, I ask you, reader. Are you a Patriot? Do you care about our Republic deeply enough that you would be willing to load a musket, fix a bayonet, and fight against those who would deprive you of it?

 

For my Patriot friends.

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Written by The Rabid Conservative

January 3, 2014 at 8:04 pm

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