The Morality of Patriotism redux

For the Fourth of July, a peek back at one of the more talked-about arti­cles in recent Friends Jour­nal his­to­ry, Tony White’s The Immor­tal­i­ty of Patri­o­tism. A sample:

Patri­o­tism clouds our judg­ment; it hin­ders objec­tiv­i­ty and detracts from our abil­i­ty to assess polit­i­cal sit­u­a­tions ratio­nal­ly. Patri­o­tism bias­es us toward our country’s per­spec­tive, encum­ber­ing our desire and abil­i­ty to con­sid­er out­side per­spec­tives. Put briefly, patri­o­tism breeds con­for­mi­ty and closed-mindedness. Fur­ther­more, patri­o­tism makes us over­ly trust­ing of those in pow­er over us, and sus­cep­ti­ble to abus­es of that power.

This was pub­lished before I came as the Journal’s edi­tor. The let­ters forum and Google search­es will pull up some very insight­ful cri­tiques that basi­cal­ly points out the dis­crep­an­cies between the sec­u­lar lefty cri­tique of the arti­cle and the his­toric Friends peace tes­ti­mo­ny. Over on the Friends Jour­nal Face­book page, there’s a live­ly dis­cus­sion cur­rent­ly hap­pen­ing about patri­o­tism and the Fourth.

(H/T to Dan­ny Cole­man for the reminder link to White’s article)