Friday, January 19, 2007

A Few Commonly Expressed Un-Patriotic Statements

A commenter at Redstate.com offers a challenge to liberals to draft an un-patriotic statement. The comment strings are boring, mostly just conservatives setting up strawmen to knock down. Even the people who seem to believe that women athletics is un-patriotic lack any wit. Redstate is a poor place for such a challenge given that anyone who deviates from accepted orthodoxy is quickly banned. The challenge itself is probably just an attempt to flush out liberals for banishment. Still, it is an interesting question.

Un-Patriotic Statements
"The Constitution is not a suicide pact."
~ Certainly the most pervasive of un-patriotic statements. It is used whenever a conservative wishes to justify abrogating some constitutional provision such as habaes corpus, the prohibition against warrantless searches, the right to trial by jury, or the right to free speech. The original source of the phrase comes from a dissenting opinion in a 1949 Supreme Court decision upholding the right of free speech. The Constitution is not a rag that can be tossed aside whenever it is convenient.

"Do not criticize the President at a time of war." ~ Some iteration of this phase is used to demand the President get a free pass whenever he takes an outrageous or stupid position. And, since when? Lincoln was vilified during the Civil War, Republicans attacked Truman during the Korean War, Johnson and Nixon got bi-partisan derision during the Vietnam War. Criticizing a President is the right of every American.

"The President is Command-in-Chief of the country." ~ wrongedy...wrong... wrong...wrong. Often coupled with the concept of the Unitary Executive to contend that the President has the right to ignore any law or Constitutional provision he does not agree with. "The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States." (Art. 2, Sec. 2, Clause 1 ~ United States Constitution.) That's it. He is Commander-in-Chief of the military. Top general, if you will. Nothing more. Period.

Anyone who disagrees with my politics is guilty of treason. ~ Never stated so succinctly, except by Ann Coulter, but the gist of many statements by rightwingers. Without active disagreement democracy is impossible.
John Boehner ~ "I listen to my Democrat friends, and I wonder if they're more interested in protecting terrorists than in protecting the American people."
Pat Robertson ~ "attempts to undermine the commander in chief during time of war amounts to treason."
Alan Caruba ~ what (Democrats) are saying of late treads extraordinarily close to being treasonous.
The United States is a Christian Nation. ~ Sometimes when the bigots want to sound inclusive they will say Judeo-Christian. The United States is a free nation in which every religion has equal status and no religion has primacy. Yet, there are some among us who insist the government must force non-Christians to swear on the Christian Bible and who demand the government erect Christian icons (crosses and creches) for them to worship.

"I don't think the judiciary is equipped at all to make decisions about what is in the national interest of our country" ~ Source Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. One of the three co-equal branches of the United States government is of no importance. The Administration has a similar opinion of Congress.

The president has the right to launch military action in Iran without first seeking congressional authorization. ~ This is the current rightwing meme, expressed as well here as anywhere. Of course, the Constitution invests in Congress alone the right to declare war (art. 1, Sec. 8, Clause 11). However, if we have been paying attention we know that rightwingers believe that the Constitution is an outdated document that can be tossed aside whenever it suits their whim.
An Aside: I still read Redstate.com, on the belief one should "Know Thine Enemy," even though I was banned there months ago for the crime of using the adjective "illconceived" to modify the noun phrase "Iraq War." For conservatives, they have a very liberal definition of the concept of obscenity.

2 comments:

Kvatch said...

Gonzales has put his foot into his mouth so many times in the last few days it's a wonder he's not be treated for 'athletes tongue'.

PoliShifter said...

This was an excellent post KnightErrant.

I still am at a loss to grasp how the President can fail to get "preserve and protect the Constitution against enemies foreign and domestic".

It's truly sick and UN-American to have people like Bush and Gonzales view The Constitution as "outdated" or something that requires THEIR interpretation.

Any American can read The Constitution and get it. It's not arcane or outdated. Yet BushCo would have us believe it's irrelevant today.