What with all the furor over the President’s comments — suggesting that those who ‘hate’ our country might like to leave — those of us who were around in the 1970s likely remember the saying ‘America: love it or leave it.’
That phrase seems to be along the same line as what the President said, but somehow I don’t remember that older phrase stirring up such a hornets’ nest of anger and invective. It seems we’ve changed since those relatively peaceful days of the 1970s. I seem to remember that later, during the Reagan years, the phrase ‘love it or leave it‘ enjoyed a certain popularity, though the usual legions of the disgruntled may have muttered and grumbled about ‘jingoism’ or something.
People back then, even the leftists, hadn’t yet developed the habit of throwing the ‘r’-word around with such profligacy. It’s hard to imagine it was ever like that in America.
Incidentally, it seems that the phrase ‘America: love it or leave it‘ was coined by old-time radio reporter Walter Winchell, back in 1940, before Pearl Harbor and our entry into World War II.
The slogan persisted and was revived during the Vietnam War era, as a response to the far-left’s constant agitprop.
It may be that the President’s words were a little more incendiary than the Winchell slogan, but it seems that he has some ‘Wormtongues” close to him who are trying to induce him to recant what he said. I think that would be a mistake and it wouldn’t appease those who say they are offended. Apologies in cases like these appear as weakness.
And if any of us were resident in a foreign country whose people and whose policies we harshly criticized, I think we’d expect to be given a rough reception by the leaders and citizens of said country. And in the first place, why would anybody want to move to a country which they saw as ‘racist’ and oppressive? That’s the height of irrationality, or sheer perversity. Yet it seems that many of our new ‘neighbors’ and newly elected officials don’t like us very much, despite their determination to settle down amongst us deplorable people. I find that really odd, yet nobody ever asks the obvious question ‘why’? I suppose it would be too politically incorrect. Truth and frankness are dangerous these days.