Sarah Silverman explains that on your sleeve patriotism, much like support for Donald Trump, is more about arrogant ignorance than patriotism. I suppose this also has something to do with being brought up Jewish and reminded of the flag intensive Nuremberg rallies. With the theme of that old horror show being MAKE GERMANY GREAT AGAIN. The Patriotism Chapter
It is also good to keep in mind that IN GOD WE TRUST on the money, the PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE forced into schoolrooms, and forcing the STAR SPANGLED BANNER into sports venues all began in the first few years of the 1950’s primarily by Joe McCarthy and McCarthyism.
I feel the same as Ms Silverman for a different reason. When I got back to the “real world” in 1969 – after three long years in the military which I now subtract from age as a complete waste of time – I saw those on the Right wrapping themselves in the flag to promote what were the worst things about my country, war and more war, the draft, racism, sexism, homophobia, “love it or leave it” and of course “nuke the gooks.”
Not to mention the greatest lie of a generation that liberals were spitting on veterans which NEVER HAPPENED ANYWHERE AT ANYTIME. That kind of flag waving patriotism is an expression of narrow and intolerant political ideology not love of country. You can see it today with The Donald, there is no love of country, there only love of what the country once was, white owned and male dominated.
When I returned I flew into Seattle, papered out of the Army, got a nice wad of dough and flew down to San Francisco, June 1969. I had not yet purchased any civilian clothes and wore my Lt Army uniform with a folding cap rather than the round hard hat I had tossed away at the airport for being just too unwieldy for both my duffel bad and my head. I went directly to the the famous Haight Ashbury area and to a free concert at Golden Gate park to see The Dead.
Everywhere I went in uniform I was greeted kindly and with respect, especially by the hippy girls that I found so hotly blond after a year in the far East. But then again I did not give them the finger, or wave a flag in their faces or scream at they about being dirty unwashed peacenick communists. I hung out in uniform until I had my fill of those kindly beautiful California girls. My central thought was, damn, I been missing all this this for three years!
To this day I am uncomfortable with this sleeve patriotism. Colin Kaepernick is my hero of late. He is doing much the same thing the Clinton Foundation has done. Use their celebrity to give back for how lucky they have been, use it to do as much good as I can, to reach out to those left behind and suffering. And if it rubs some people the wrong way, so be it, they probably need to be rubbed the wrong way.