Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Signaling anti-American allegiances on the 4th of July

Most people celebrate the 4th of July is roughly the same fashion: enjoy the day off work, spend time with friends & family, and pretend to care about America more than they probably do. A few on my facebook have taken the opportunity to remind us that it's stupid to have pride in your country when you had no say in being born there; it's not an accomplishment. Assuming these people are liberals (and they are), there's an obvious contradiction to their worldview. Does it jump out at you?

These commenters are not libtards. They were all posts by smart guys, family men, who are talented in multiple facets. They also are paid below their potential because they've chosen to pursue more artistic endeavors.

People tend to be consistent, either logically or emotionally. The way I see it is that people's statements can be understood in one of three contexts. First, you look for intellectual principles. If those are contradictory, then you look for tribal allegiances. If still there is no consistency then you must assume the person is both irrational and antisocial. If you don't believe the subject to be those things, and they aren't being logically consistent, then their motives must be some sort of tribal loyalty.

So in this case, some liberals are saying that it's stupid to be proud of something you were born into. Have you observed a contradiction yet? I can verify what you've likely assumed: these people have never made facebook posts disparaging gay pride. Isn't that the same? They tell us homosexuality is something people are just born with. So why the pride? How is that different from nationality, which we are just born into? There are also ethnic prides. You can be sure that these people support black pride or Asian pride but would call white pride racist or worse. Same with girl power vs boy power, etc. When pushed on the issue they'll say it's different because the gays have had to fight oppression, so it's pride in what they've accomplished. So it's different if there's a victimization narrative, but there was a victimization narrative for the American revolution as well. Most of their grievances with Britain were contrived or exaggerated. Sure Britain was trying to tax Americans, but it was because they were in war debt after the colonists begged the British to come in and clear out the French, which they did. Both these victimization narratives have kernels of truth, but they're largely bullshit.

So clearly there's not logical consistency here. Universality does not apply. They pretend to have a principle (no pride for birth conditions) what they really have is a tribal allegiance (no pride for groups that are not leftist preferred). What's interesting is that they'd come out on 4th of July and say that with clear implications. They are anti-American. It sounds hyperbolic, but it's not. Because the statement is not logically inconsistent with their other beliefs, it is just a pronouncement of tribal allegiance, showing their opposition to America. Had they even thought for just a minute is this logically sound? or, even better, what would be the obvious rebuttal by annoying conservatives? then they should have quickly seen the contradiction and modified their message. But that's the thing about virtue signaling to one's own side. The more irrational and potentially self-harming it is, the more potent.

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