The Myth That Pointing the Finger at the US is Anti-American

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posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 10:03 AM
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Originally posted by Dianec
reply to post by Kali74
 

We need to be especially critical because we are still an experiment - democracy and individualist society to the extreme. We can say what is working as well. Its just that the focus is usually on what we're doing wrong. That's to be expected.


Maybe slightly off topic, but a pet peeve of mine- America is NOT a Democracy, and was never meant to be one- especially not "to the extreme".
It is a Republic and was founded on the value upon individualism as contrasted with collectivism- the power of the individual as bigger than that of the majority.
Democracy works on the complete opposite-giving the majority the power.

Closest you can get is calling it an "indirect democracy"- or "representative democracy", if one assumes the representatives remain loyal to the majority in the area they represent and are not bought off by other individuals (like corporations).

But I still agree with the rest of what you said- we need to be analyzing realistically and objectively as possible, the progression of this experiment!
edit on 6-9-2013 by Bluesma because: (no reason given)




posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 10:44 AM
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reply to post by Kali74
 


If you wish to "take responsibility" then don't target the whole U.S.. That is a generality. Target those who you feel responsible, not the whole.

While all hold responsibility, to a degree, targeting the whole gets no traction and even a backlash from those who are tired of the bash U.S. no matter what crowd. (They do exist.)

We probably disagree on most things and that's the U.S. system...where to draw the line is always the toughest question.

Blaming the U.S. is great for venting purposes, but does nothing to point out the who and why of it.

You can expect the collateral damage when you position yourself in the same area code of the Hate U.S.A. crowd.
edit on 6-9-2013 by nwtrucker because: grammar



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 10:47 AM
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Originally posted by Bluesma

Originally posted by Dianec
reply to post by Kali74
 

We need to be especially critical because we are still an experiment - democracy and individualist society to the extreme. We can say what is working as well. Its just that the focus is usually on what we're doing wrong. That's to be expected.


Maybe slightly off topic, but a pet peeve of mine- America is NOT a Democracy, and was never meant to be one- especially not "to the extreme".
It is a Republic and was founded on the value upon individualism as contrasted with collectivism- the power of the individual as bigger than that of the majority.
Democracy works on the complete opposite-giving the majority the power.

Closest you can get is calling it an "indirect democracy"- or "representative democracy", if one assumes the representatives remain loyal to the majority in the area they represent and are not bought off by other individuals (like corporations).

But I still agree with the rest of what you said- we need to be analyzing realistically and objectively as possible, the progression of this experiment!
edit on 6-9-2013 by Bluesma because: (no reason given)


You are right. Our founding fathers wanted a republic, not a democracy. However, many of our amendments to the constitution have blurred the distinction. Thus a democratic-republic. How we are viewed in the world, generally speaking, is a free society where everyone has a voice and control over their own destinies (viewed as a democracy even though it is a democratic republic). I do use the word democracy too much however so its good it was brought to my attention overall.

The use of "extreme" is not being taken as I intended it to be. In my own thinking I was comparing us to other countries; we are/were the polar opposite to other countries with our approach to government. I should have worded that differently.
edit on 6-9-2013 by Dianec because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 10:48 AM
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Originally posted by Kali74
Certainly other nations have their problems, some commit horrible atrocities. The thing is though is that the US actively pursues involvement.

Kali .. they all do. You don't think that the hundreds of millions of $$ that Iran pumps into Hezbollah isn't 'actively pursuing involvement'? Or the billions of $$ that Russia pumps into Syria isn't 'actively pursuing involvement'? etc etc? Sure it is. The US has a more open society so you see it more openly, but that doesn't mean that the closed societies like Russia or Iran aren't 'actively pursuing involvement' in a major way. It just means they are more covert about it.



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 11:04 AM
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It's the same idiocy that drives people to call those who condemn Israel as anti-Semites.



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 11:11 AM
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reply to post by Kali74
 


Indeed, there is nothing more American than challenging official narratives and demanding explanations for questionable actions.

Well, scratch that, maybe the only thing more American is demanding the minimization of the power allocated to the questionable actors.
edit on 6-9-2013 by greencmp because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 11:39 AM
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Originally posted by beezzer

“I'm sick and tired of people who say that if you debate and disagree with this administration, somehow you're not patriotic. We need to stand up and say we're Americans, and we have the right to debate and disagree with any administration.”


― Hillary Rodham Clinton

About the truest thing she has ever said.


What spirit or alien was she channeling when she said that?!


We have the tools to make America into whatever we the people want. The problem is that these days no one wants to work and use the tools. People are tired.



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 12:00 PM
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reply to post by Kali74
 


I am really proud of you American guys here on ATS.

I have witnessed all the soul searching and conscience being expressed.

You are not at all like the mainstream media portrayals of your country and culture.

I have seen so much gentility and care being expressed here beyond my wildest expectations.

I always said as dominant cultures go that the U.S has had more conscience then the cultures that preceded it.

Whatever happens in these coming days I am satisfied that you have deep care and awareness as a nation.

I have told all my family and friends about what I have seen and I have much affection for you as a people.

If your country does decide upon military action in Syria I will know that your people have done their part in their resistance to not wanting to inflict aggression on another nation.

I always refer to you as a sharp, witty, diverse and intelligent people. That is why I like coming here to ATS to communicate and interact with you.

Bless!



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 12:23 PM
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reply to post by Kali74
 


If I may toss my two cents into the jelly jar here? I think there are two very different things that happen here. One is a hard edged and sometimes even vicious level of criticism for specifics America is doing, has done or intends to do. The other and what I've come to detest myself is outright, unmitigated America bashing.

The difference? It's a fairly simple one, I believe.

The most vicious criticism is still merely constructive criticism when said in good faith with hope for solutions. It's even better when solutions are offered, however poorly they may fit. Having tried and come up with some alternative to the problem being ranted about? Well..it makes all the difference to how I think of the speaker. Double down on that for an American vs. a foreign national who doesn't and never has lived here.

America bashing is, well? Bashing. No solutions offered, unless in deep sarcasm or mocking tones. No 'good with the bad' approach in even implied effort. Also, what so often comes with it? Not just a recognition that America has PROFOUND problems (which we sure do) but the sense that, because of factors I've never heard articulated in any decent way, their position/nation/life is superior to ours DUE to our Government's problems and policies.

^^^ This last part, often from folks in nations which are as bad or even, dare I say? Worse in some ways than our own.

You're right. Pointing the finger at US shortcomings and problems is NOT Anti-American. Doing so while openly gleeful, gloating or downright mean spirited? Well, that sure is..and that's where I see the line, personally. Great thread!



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 12:33 PM
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Calling out US failures is the most American thimg you can do. Be unruly, be patriotic.



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 12:57 PM
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From my experience, every time I've seen someone say something negative about the US, it's met with crys of "Anti-Americanism" even when the point is just and true.

A lot of the problem a deeply ingrained beliefs, which may be false, almost the same as religious arguments.

It's just as bad as Apple vs Samsung, PC vs Mac, and so on, the way the argument always turns into.

As citizens, you should be critical of EVERYTHING your government does, acts, brings in and more, you could inspect and apply critical thinking to every single part of government, no matter your country, disagreeing with the government is not being against your country, I mean, when has any government in any country, actually ever truly represented the true voice of the people? The majority? It's always in the governments own interests, not the people.

I wish more people spoke out, more people stood up, about government of all shapes, in the US, in Britain, in the world.

These people should be our voice, we should be the voice in the officials head, but we are not,

I'm not an American, and I know if I ever said anything "negative" about America, no matter if it was factual, it would be met with a torrid of abuse about Britain or XYZ Country of Origin. ( Generally speaking, a minority of course are completely different, as goes with almost any topic, 100% does not exist.)

Let's be honest, the whole "1st world" is f......

Democracy is not free, fair, or just. I'd argue in fact, that "freedom" is a falsehood that does not truly exist in the democratic first world.

Be critical, speak up, ignore people who give you labels, it's people like you, who apply critical thinking, that could one day change the status quo.



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 12:58 PM
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reply to post by FlyersFan
 


What a joke. America averages a war every 20 years, and most of those wars didn't even pass through congress.

We killed off basically an entire group of people when we settled here. Then we killed 5 million civilians in Vietnam with the hilarious "Gulf of Tonkin incident". Then came the Gulf War and present day. Where the body count continues to rise, "terrorist" or civilian it does not matter.

I probably will never understand this blind optimism towards America and it's glaring hypocrisy that almost everyone forgets.

First- Averages a war every 20 years, (most of them don't pass through congress)
- That's not even counting various drone strikes around the world.
- One of the primary reasons why we had a Revolution against the British was because of the British Central Bank, and guess what, we have a private central bank today.

So basically to conclude somewhat, if you support this "New America" you support unconstitutional wars, various drone strikes around the world, A Privately owned central banking system, and murder.

And it's only going to get worse and worse. Because almost every country that does not have a Internationally owned private central bank is being invaded by the US. I.E. Syria, and of course the big one, Iran.



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 05:26 PM
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reply to post by Skjord
 


Indeed. If I hear the words "American Exceptionalism" said with a straight face one more time I might just throw up. The only thing we're exceptional at is war and BMI.

I love my constitution, I love the ideals our nation was founded on, I love our natural beauty, and a lot of our people. But every single elected and appointed official that works for the Federal Government in D.C. needs to be rounded up, put in a rocket, and fired directly into the sun. Any lobbyist who has worked in Congress or the Senate can be put on the next rocket.



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 05:31 PM
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reply to post by FlyersFan
 


We can't change what Iran and Russia do, we can change what our government does. Or at least try...



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 07:46 PM
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Originally posted by Kali74
I'm an American, I love the idea of what my country is supposed to be. We're supposed to be about freedom and liberty. My country is not behaving as it should yet other Americans even though they disagree with action against Syria too, get mad at me when I point out the bad things we have done outside our borders, they call or at least think of me as hating America. I see this as a logic disconnect and perpetuating the myth that speaking out against this pattern of war and being world police, is anti-american. I call it taking responsibility, I call it expecting my country to stand up, grow up and behave like a responsible nation. We cannot break this cycle if we don't acknowledge and demand to change the behaviors that drive it.

We have consistently done the wrong thing outside our borders and we need to talk about it so we can go about making sure we stop it.

This "World Police" label is always used in a negative way,
Why is that, do all people think police are bad? What are we doing that is "bad outside our borders"? We are supposed to be the most prosperous and free nation on earth. Policing the world? Hardly! Getting involved in the affairs of nations with major social, political, economic, and conflict problems. Yes! When no one else in the world, is willing to help their neighbors, what sort of do nothing attitude for people that are being oppressed makes people feel like that is the correct solution?
Just like the star athlete of sports teams we get the blame for everything that goes wrong. If your government was slaughtering you, and you didn't have the resources, or capabilities to fight back what then? Nothing because the whole world wants to do nothing! Welcome to N. Korea and every other place where you have no freedom or rights where hundreds or thousands of people die and no one in the world will stand up for you.
America the greatest nation on earth, did nothing to help their neighbors.
How will history judge that?
edit on 6-9-2013 by Racist because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 07:52 PM
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reply to post by Kali74
 


I agree 100% with you. I think America is the greatest country on earth, but it's wrong to turn a blind eye to all the atrocities and outrages that our country has committed in the past and is committing now. We only stay strong if we can look un blinkingly at our errors and learn from them and change our course. We have to also take politics out of it. The rightwing pundits and talking heads are just destroying Obama right now, yet turning a blind eye on all the republicans. It was the opposite when Bush was in office. How do we break that cycle? Should be a list of all the civilians that we've killed in the last ten years over seas. That should be a starting point and we should not be okay with that, just like we should not be okay with wasting billions of dollars every year spying on ourselves.



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 07:59 PM
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reply to post by Kali74
 


I am all for accountability.

But.......

Pointing the finger, always gets three pointing back at you.

Also, Those people who want to hold America and its citizens "accountable" better hold every other country out there accountable.

Why we are at it, hold ALL humanity to the ills we suffer.

Case in point? Syria.

How many Chinese weapons have killed Syrians? How many Russian weapons have killed Syrians? One cannot even question Americas involvement, without questioning how many innocent victims have died because some other Country has dumped its munitions on another Countries soil, and said that they have the right, because they are allies to them.

I have said this numerous times.

If you cant hold the other parties responsible, hold none of them responsible.

This pissing contest on who is worse, or who started it doesn't help. We are all to blame, as a species.


S&F



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 08:01 PM
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reply to post by sonnny1
 


To a degree I get what yer saying.....but I don't care about other countries. I am not aiming to be the "relatively best country". My standards are not related to others.



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 08:12 PM
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reply to post by bigfatfurrytexan
 


I care.

We need some sort of an enlightenment as a species. We need to overlook our own cares, and start caring about others too. Not saying you dont, BTW. You always have had my respect. I just wish we would fix our own backyard, and help others fix there's. I sometimes wish we would close this Country off, and remake it into something special again. In the long run we have to think of others, even if it means fixing here first. I'm a dreamer. I know it wont be a reality of course, but I would like to think we are better then our own shortcomings.



edit on 462013999131 by sonnny1 because: typo, sorry



posted on Sep, 6 2013 @ 08:15 PM
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reply to post by sonnny1
 


I commented to my mom today while discussing the current national view on Syria. It seems that in the last 100 years we have started as isolationists, become an empire with popular support all the way back to a desire for isolationism.

I would love nothing more. Those crooked bastards in DC....we have some weeds to cut for sure!





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