The Watering Hole, Monday, August 24, 2015: The Rebel Flag Is Not About ‘Patriotism’

So the Weekend Folks at Fox and Friends (say that three times backwards in front of a candle-lit mirror and it will summon them) are having a sad over the decline in acceptability of the Battle Flag of the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia (hereafter conveniently, if technically inaccurately, known as the Confederate Flag, the Rebel Flag, the Traitor Flag, The Slavery Lover Flag, the Racist Flag, and the White Supremacist Flag II) because they wrongly believe it’s because Liberals are trying to ban all expressions of “patriotism.”

Before going on to hear what an actual documentarian on the Civil War has to say about what it, and the battles flags under which the South fought, represented, let’s clear up a couple of things. First Tucker “This is not about a school district in Tennessee” Carlson. it is about what’s happening in this one county school district in Tennessee. That would be the first thing an actual journalist would make clear to his audience, but I digress. Second, it wasn’t “Liberals” who were “banning the American flag.” it was the county officials in this one school district. Now, FTR, I think they went too far in banning all flags, especially the American Flag. It’s without question a violation of First Amendment rights, but so too is the banning of the Confederate Flag. Don’t misunderstand me. It may sound like I’m agreeing with Tucker Carlson, but I am not. In this instance, he happens to be right about it being wrong for them to ban all flags, but he’s right for entirely the wrong reasons. He wants to turn what is a simple violation of First Amendment rights into a baseless attack on Liberals and Liberalism, by using the tried and true Conservative tactic of the false framing, or straw man argument.

To continue with the Wrongness of Being Tucker, he tried to blame what’s happening in this on, well, you try to make sense of this:

“This is a about a long-term trend where the people who run everything — the elites in Washington, New York and L.A. — despise rural America and its culture, suspect anybody that doesn’t live in their cities of being a bigot, and they’re trying to crush that culture by banning its symbols.”

While it true that Dickson County is represented by a Democrat in the House, he had nothing whatsoever to do with this local policy change. Nor did anyone in New York. Nor did anyone in L.A. Nor do the people in Washington, New York and L.A. “despise rural America and its culture.” In this free society, people who live on the coasts have chosen to live a different lifestyle than those who live in the middle of the country. It’s not an either/or choice, Tucker. It’s not a matter of binary thinking – that if you like one thing you must hate the other. Liberals, whom you despise for the way we think, do not think the way you think we think. You are projecting, and it is showing us how YOU think about the situation. And we don’t think of anyone who doesn’t live in our cities of being a bigot. The explanation is similar to what John Stuart Mill said about Conservatives. “While it true that not all conservative people are stupid, it is most certainly true that most stupid people are conservative.” (Some 300 years later, scientific studies have confirmed this.) It’s not that people in the cities think of the people in rural America as bigots, it’s that bigots tend to prefer not to live in the multi-cultural cities on the coasts. It’s not that everybody in rural America is a bigot, it’s that most bigots prefer to live in rural America. What concerns people like me is how welcome they are to live there. But that’s a topic for another post, as my grandfather used to say before he died in 1959. (He was ahead of his time.)

I’ll get back to why what you said is bullshit, but first let’s make clear about what this “heritage,” this “culture,” you’re referring to really is. I won’t give it away by mentioning “Slavery.” Oops.

It’s not that we want to “crush” that culture (there you go projecting again, believing that we Liberals think of resolving differences of opinion through violent conflicts), it’s that we want people to understand the truth about what that flag represents. It represents a way of life that is no longer American. That heritage, that culture, you so lovingly defend even though you were born and raised in California, was founded on the premise of White Supremacy, and the simple proof of that is the way black people have been treated even 150 years after the war ended. That part of the country has never wanted to accept black people as equals. Not legally, not officially, not formally, but worst of all, not honestly. Tucker blathered on.

“Not just the Confederate flag, but the American flag,” he continued. “They hate expressions of patriotism. It makes them uncomfortable. Let’s be honest.”

If you’re equating a love of the Rebel Flag with patriotism, I’m going to have to ask you which dictionary you’re using because, by definition, the Rebel Flag (the one used by the Traitors) cannot be called a flag of Patriotism equal to that earned by the American Flag (the winning side, I might add.) Like most of the Conservatives we hear on public media (there, I didn’t generalize too much) and the people who think they’re right (no, still not too much), Tucker Carlson engages in too much binary thinking because it’s the easiest kind of low-effort thinking there is. It’s one thing or its opposite. If you don’t support the American Flag 100% and everything she stands for, then you must be a Traitor (like those Rebels who denounced the United States and formed their own country and started a war with us.) If you’re uncomfortable, it doesn’t mean you hate something. We are capable of nuance, of seeing shades of gray. What makes me uncomfortable about the public displays of patriotism I see are the bigoted, racist people doing it. I don’t like being associated with those people. The people who promote the symbols of Slavery are people whose values I do not share. And when you try to pass them off as good American citizens, I have to wonder from which dictionary you found your definition of “good.”

This is our daily open thread. Feel free to say horrible things about Tucker Carlson, or discuss anything else you wish.

90 thoughts on “The Watering Hole, Monday, August 24, 2015: The Rebel Flag Is Not About ‘Patriotism’

  1. The morning news says Trump is leading the Republican field and stocks around the world are falling. Is there an inverse correlation?

  2. From the department of irony:
    The people that spent money on Ashley Madison are upset because their trust was betrayed.

    • Had it not been for Josh “Horn-dog” Duggar, I have to wonder how many people — besides myself — had never even heard of ‘Ashley Madison.’ And too, speaking as a nontheist, I gotta wonder — is fucking around (sotospeak) a fundie “Christian” thing (note quotes)? Or is Duggar more a “Christian” than he is a Christian (note quotes)?

      • Plus. The Dow has already rebounded somewhat and the index is still greater than during any previous Administration. The losses aren’t even in the same league as the 2008 crash. If Gawd has anything to do with it I would say it’s just a little poke meant to inform GOoPers that they are all effing nuts and should just shut the eff up and go home.

  3. I came out of the grocery store this morning, and noticed there was a woman putting her groceries in the back of a nice white truck parked next to my dirty car — hey, there’s a drought, ya know. Prominently displayed on the back of the truck was a confederate flag sticker, just above the Oregon plates.

    I asked the woman — nicely — how long she’d lived in Oregon, and with a big smile, she said, “All my life!” I smiled back and pointed to the confederate flag sticker, “So what’s that got to do with you?”

    I dunno why, but she got a little snarly at this point and said, “It’s a part of our American heritage!” I just kept smiling and said, “No, it isn’t,” and drove off.

    Silly racist person.

    • You prolly didn’t know. White Supremacy is a really BIG “part of our American heritage!” I mean, how many darkies were involved in writing the Constitution? How many Injuns? A: NOT A SINGLE ONE OF ANY OF ‘EM!! And ONLY the SOUTH was smart enough to see it! The Confederate flag IS Amurkkka!!!

      Oops. Sorry. I got carried away. I was only trying to say what the botch with the white truck was really “thinking” (using the word loosely).

    • She must have been celebrating the estimated 620,000 soldiers that perished in that conflict. One in four men who went to war didn’t return to their homes and families.
      Hurrah for Dixie?

    • The crazy is everywhere. An old friend of mine has been working with rightwhiners and now e thinks Trumpy is just what this country needs. what’s worse was yesterday when i walked past a Boy Scout troop selling hotdogs and their stand was flanked by two old fat guys carrying pistols, a rifle, and a shotgun.

    • she said, “It’s a part of our American heritage!”

      I think a good response to bamboozle her would have been, “Oh, you mean like how conservatives are rewriting history in our kids’ textbooks to take out the “negative” aspects – like the rebel flag – that show the US in an unflattering way.”

    • Yes it is part of your history. Unfortunately it is not a good part of your history. Just like the holocaust is a part of Germany’s history.

  4. Happy 125th Birthday Duke Kahanamoku

    The “Ambassador of Aloha” and Olympic gold medal winner introduced the world to surfing.

  5. “Jeb! claimed on Monday that his use of the term “anchor babies” was not offensive because he was referring to the practice of people, primarily Asians, coming to the U.S. and “taking advantage” of birthright citizenship.”

    Shorter Jeb!: “I speak Spanish, immersed myself in the culture, and my wife is Hispanic, so I can’t be racist toward Latinos. But Asians? They don’t have that many votes. Yeah, fuck those guys.”

      • Damn, they are going to piss off every racial group.

        Thank the stars Social Security hasn’t, yet, been privatized. Imagine all of us who
        would be suffering at this moment. (it frightens me the GOP only care about the wealthy)

      • I think the smart one is the sister, who nobody’s heard about. And, yes, her name is Doro. My point is nobody’s heard of her because she hasn’t been in the news committing crimes (that I know of.)

  6. I missed the Indycar race yesterday, but tonight I learned that Andretti driver Justin Wilson was struck in the helmet by flying debris from another car that hit the wall during yesterday’s race at Pocono. Tonight it’s reported that he has passed away from his injury. It was a freak accident, and in no way his fault. This is the second Indycar death in four years, the last being Dan Wheldon at Las Vegas.

    • Just read about his death. Everyone spoke very highly of him.
      The article stated his brother is also a driver.

      (Justin’s organs will be donated)

  7. August 25, 1967, George Lincoln Rockwell was killed.

    A very evil, vile human. Hilter was his hero (although Rockwell fought with the U.S. in WW II)

    [is this what the confederate flag-waving are discussing about ‘heritage’?]

    • Are you kidding? The only reason Trumpy is running is so that he can bask in the adoration of a bunch of dumbfucks. If Hitler rose from the grave and endorsed Trumpy his reply would be “at least there’s one good thing about him”.

      • Donald Trump is wanking the biggest publically witnessed wank in world history….. it is the most epic wank since Julius Caesar pulled it out in the Forum and said “curry this Brutus”

        It didn’t end well as I remember, but they talked about it for a …. while…

    • Speaking of new marine species…

      I decided to get a bunch of snails and hermit crabs rather than new fish, for the moment. Banzai Kitty seems to enjoy watching the new additions to the tank as much as I do. When I sit on the edge of the couch to observe them said kitty either hops up on my lap or on the shelf at the edge of the tank for a closer look. The fish never caught his interest but the erratic movements of the little critters really interests him.

      I had never had much success with snails before but, after about three years of letting the algae grow, the new ones are doing very well after almost 2 weeks. I’m even pretty sure that they were mating the other night. The really fascinating part is that their behavior is much more complex than one would expect from a such a primitive creature. When one encounters the trail left by another, for example, it will veer off at about 45 degrees to find fresh patches of algae and they coordinate their periods of rest and activity.

      The hermit crabs are even more fun. The way I have the current set up in my tank most of the food the fish miss ends up in one corner. Now, when I feed the fish, all the crabs will converge on that corner of the tank from wherever they had wandered off to. It’s like a miniature version of the mass crab migration you posted a while back. I’m thinking of getting another package plus a few shrimp at the start of the month.

  8. Trump was talking on MSNBC, so I went to Encore Westerns to watch a Death Valley Days, then I watched Wanted, Dead Or Alive. I come back to MSNBC, and Trump’s still going.

  9. If it’s taking this long for Biden to decide he wants to be President, I don’t think he should run. Anyhway, he’s only the DNC backup candidate in case Hillary implodes.

    • The entire idea is quite frightening to me. Not just because Dump is an ass, there are so many people in this country that follow him around like a puppy.

    • Jesse had some good shit and some….. not so good shit to lay down……

      “Just give me 1 hour with Dick Cheney….. “

    • Relax, I’m sure Frugal will have a nice meal prepared for tomorrow.

      Wednesdays are in flux right now, as our current author is on a break. Jane has been trying to fill in with something, but she’s been sick all week and unable to write new posts.

      We regret the inconvenience and disappointment this may have caused our regular Zoosters. We hope to resume a “normal” schedule soon.

      • Sorry to hear Jane is ailing. Hope she’s feeling better.

        If y’all know ahead of time when a day will pass without a new post, an announcement in the comments might encourage folk to put up new comments instead of waiting all day to see if a post happens later. I know I’ve held back some days.

    • While it’s slightly less annoying than the original I would still rather be burned at the stake than be forced to listen to 10 hours of any version of that song.

    • As the New Mexico Rancher pointed out about the time the Mexican Gray was reintroduce in E. AZ and W NM, “Them wolves is killers.”

      My suggestion, based on that comment along with the above video is that in 2016’s Republican National Convention, we release a pack or two of wolves as part of a further study on (a) the best way, and (b) how long it takes to CLEAN UP a given environment (Note: If Christie is there, I recommend a flock of carrion eaters as well since there prolly is no benefit in overwhelming the wolf pack diet).

  10. From my daughter:

    This is my boss:

    He’s been getting hate mail/email/voicemails and threats, racial slurs galore, from people that want him and “his wetback family” out of this country. Enrico is married and has kids, is 40 and has a tenured faculty position, a Ph.D. in astrophysics and is a Harvard Radcliffe Fellow. WHAT MORE DO “THEY” WANT?

    Broke my heart since it’s scaring his little boy, he’s been asking if they have to move because of this (mom is Anglo and American).

    • Me neither, there’s nothing to be gained by it.

      Besides, there’ll be plenty more opportunities to see something like that, if one is so inclined.

  11. “And according to recently published research, the GOP’s presidential nominee would need to win nearly half of the Latino vote to make it to the White House. (President Obama won reelection with 71% of the Latino vote).”

    Donald may have crossed the wrong Mexican in Jorge Ramos.

    • Donald may have crossed the wrong Mexican in Jorge Ramos.

      Especially flippantly telling him to go back to Univision.

      Trump acts as if he’s running for 8th-grade class president.
      He is so immature.

      • While Ramos was waiting to be let back inside, a man wearing a Donald Trump sticker approached Ramos in the area outside the press conference to tell him, “This is not about you. Get out of my country.”

        In the video above, it looks like the man approaches Ramos, who is a United States citizen, completely unprovoked. Ramos turns around to listen to what the man is saying, and then replies, “I am a U.S. citizen.”

    • bdmm, has your wife seen this?

      HuffPost Canada Parents
      “My friend is a 1st grade teacher and asked her kids what they think teachers do when not at school.” (Source: Imgur)

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