"We must never underestimate our enemy. Our enemy is committed against us twenty-four hours a day. They use one hundred percent of their effort to maintain their materialistic status quo. One hundred percent of their effort goes into deceiving us and manipulating us against each other. We have to devote our lives, we have to make our commitment, we have to follow a way of life that says we are going to resist that forever ... a resistance: something that we can pass on as strength to the coming generations."
"A resistance where organizational egos don't get in the way. A resistance where individual egos do not get in the way. A resistance where the infiltrators and the provocateurs and the liars and the betrayers and the traitors, they do not get in the way ... a resistance of consciousness. This is our obligation to the earth. And only by fulfilling our obligation to the earth can we fulfill our obligations to the people.
"We must go beyond the arrogance of human rights. We must go beyond the ignorance of civil rights. We must step into the reality of natural rights because all of the natural world has a right to existence and we are only a small part of it. There can be no tradeoff." excerpt from "Stickman" by John Trudell.
John Trudell, a native American, states the indigenous perspective, thus declaring that man's arrogance is the enemy -- his actions based upon the illusion of separation from the great family of All Our Relations being pathological and alien. In the indigenous perspective loyalty first must be given to mother nature and the Great Spirit -- that which sired and sustains all of creation. Disregarding and disrespecting that -- failing to honor and defend the mother, mankind has fallen into a primary corruption and disconnection.
Waving flags is not real patriotism. Anybody can do that. As a matter of fact, that's been a favorite masquerade of traitors, cowards, selfish manipulators, and thieves for millennia. Following the leader is not patriotism. That's a game children play. Saying the "right word" is not patriotism, but merely a trick learned by parrots. Conforming to other's expectations, being obsequious, and afraid to speak your own mind is not patriotism, but rather cowardice. No, waving yellow ribbons is not patriotism, nor is wearing patriotic clothing, nor is shopping. Patriotism isn't that simpleminded.
Rather patriotism is holding true to fundamental principles, popular or not. Rather the test of the patriot comes when despite the odds, despite the pressure from without, despite the idiocy of the mob, one can still hold true with integrity to fundamental principles and values -- one has the courage to follow one's principles and be true to values and conscience despite mob or peer pressure. Being "able" to think for one self is a basic responsibility of democratic citizens, without such the democracy will not be able to make constructive, functional, nor expedient use of "facts" or data.
Because many founding fathers fled a Europe that imposed the belief of the majority upon the minority, America's founders attempted to ensure not only the individual's freedom to think for oneself (against the majority if it is befitting), but also to speak up when one feels a right is abrogated, injustice committed, or a principle violated regardless if the majority view says otherwise. Especially so, this right is insured and is turned into a duty when an "authority" figure, leader, autocrat, or public servant (especially of great responsibility) appears to violate one's fundamental principles. According to fundamental American principles, this right to speak up is fundamental and its expression is defined as patriotic. Conversely it is not patriotic, but rather by definition betrays fundamental principle to go along with programs or so called authorities or leaders which betray or oppose fundamental principles just because one is afraid of rocking the boat, being labeled as a malcontent, or afraid of retribution. In a democracy silence is permission. As such, patriotism is presented as a duty and obligation, more than a right.
In the present climate of American militarism and accelerated totalitarianism (police state) it will be useful for the purposes of lucidity to point out:
Now peace is a great value, held dear in all religions and spiritual cultures. War is simply organized murder, a last resort at best to be entered upon after all other means of honorable diplomacy and peace making has failed. As such war is most often the mark of failed diplomacy, but rarely is the diplomat blamed for its failure. This is so, because too many governments actually want a war -- they are controlled by their warrior cults, their military/industrial complexes, by avaricious exploitive meddlers, by soldiers of fortune, and so forth.
Bureaucrats, bankers, arms dealers, generals and their families rarely get killed in war -- they manage to escape. But rather it is the common man and woman who pays the price of war in terms of blood and taxes. More so it is the future generations who inherit the dark legacies of debt, cycles of violence, institutionalized hatred, jealousies, fear and distrust. It is the land, the animals, and life who suffers the most after the greedy (and truly petty) power mongers have long left their body. So it is in most cases more patriotic to not want war or at least grant war after all other peaceful means have been honestly and intelligently undertaken.
I remember the Vietnam war. At first in 1963-64, 99% of the American people considered the conflict justified and the protesters unpatriotic. It was heresy to be against war. The protesters were thus deemed unpatriotic, that is until it was clear 5 long years later that over 51% of the population considered the war to not be in the best interest of the country. So it thus finally was deemed patriotic to get out of the war and create peace. Peace again became patriotic.
But it took a long time. In 1968 all the candidates ran on a pro-peace platform (even Richard Nixon)., but it took until 1973 for the war to end (in a so called honorable peace). The problem is that those who know how to make war function well in conflict and strife, but do not know how to make peace. Also it is far easier to make war, than to make peace.
War is honorable when defending self, homeland, dear and treasured principles, but most wars are fought upon the battlefield of avarice, personal advantage, fear, arrogance, pride (religious, ethnic, nationalistic. etc.), contempt, prejudice, and hatred -- war is based on what divides people while peace is based on what connects us to each and every other. Peace occurs from Integrity while war comes from fragmentation and corruption.
As such the advocacy of peace or war by can not be considered to patriotic nor disloyal by themselves, but rather this determination has to be made within the context of what is best for the country overall. Since this may differ according to individual systems of thought, what may be considered patriotic duty on one hand, and disloyalty on the other is mostly subjective. One thing we can say for certain that to be loyal to a "leader" or authority who betrays fundamental principle is by definition unpatriotic. Thus it is a mistake to confuse the unquestioned following the leaders who advocate for example a police state and the taking away of individual liberties with the foundational principles of America. In other words, it is our patriotic duty to prevent such mis-leadership and also to oppose any policy be it war or peace which also betrays the fundamental good of the country. Men may debate which direction may be best, but to call the opposition unpatriotic is unjust as long as peace advocates are sincere in their beliefs. They may well feel that it is in America's best interests not to engage in war, pursue a militaristic approach to solving world problems, or create a huge police infrastructure and degrade civil liberties at home. Indeed to deny another's right to speak their mind, would by itself be unpatriotic.
The problem not unknown to demagogues and warmongers is that once a war is started, it is then much harder for dissent to be heard. One obvious reason (say for example that the USA is fighting Iraq) is that if a US citizen says that they are not for the US in the fight, then you are labeled anti-American, as if it were a baseball or football game. A US citizen really could not say that he/she hoped that the US would lose the war and be repelled, because in the terms of a battle, if you were against the US victory, you could be labeled anti-US ergo, unpatriotic. This is because in war, one identifies the war as an externalization of the ego in terms of nationalistic pride, but in fact there exists a finite difference between the USA as a country and the fortunes of its armies in far off wars of exploitation. Such "fine details" are not easily explained to irrational and emotionally charged nationalists who find their self worth , pride, and identity in such militaristic fixations. Certainly, being charged up by the greedy warmonger's and demagogue's propaganda machines, the common person's denial and false sense of self (in terms of lust, greed, delusional pride, fear, hatred, and envy are clung onto as tenaciously as dear life itself.
Especially the families of the poor lackeys (soldiers) who fight in such wars become the most guilt ridden and irrational in such times of war because they are driven by a psychological need to protect and defend them. Here the demagogue's propagandists attempt to gain a psychological coup when they pit these families against dissenters, telling the "patriotic families that dissenters are against their sons and daughters. But they become literally dumbfounded when dissenters say that peace would more safely bring their sons and daughters out of harms way. In other words those who promote war are the very ones that place America's sons and daughters in harms way, while not supporting war actually supports the soldier's life. the guilt arises when the advocates of war are presented with the reality of their responsibility in the soldier's death. Out of that pain, they will grasp onto false straws. Since one can not argue with the fact that war kills people on both sides, so then propagandists require to sanction the war on manufacturing superior moral grounds -- straight greed and exploitation will not qualify as in "we are making money on your sons' and daughters' deaths.
We have seen in the last century the war to end all wars. The war on hunger. The war on drugs. The war against poverty, pollution, and ignorance, but not yet the war against violence itself. More violence to our fellow man, does not peace beget. We witness that our fellow countrymen confuse vengeance, punishment, and violence as justice, but justice is based on fundamental values and principles, on something far greater than the knee jerk reaction of discharging our violence and inner pain -- our grief or anger -- upon a perpetuator (real or surrogate).
If Americans really wanted peace and justice, then they would have to demand a foreign policy that perpetuated justice, ended abuse, avarice, the crimes of arrogance, and exploitation by Americans toward others, But no such foreign policy has been demanded. American foreign policy on the contrary has been to meddle and force others to bend toward our will. It has occurred first with economic incentives (usually short term) and then later through threat, persuasion, force, and/or violence. It often utilizes the means of state terrorism in the form of military action or economic sanctions. Only an ostrich would ignore the widespread resentment toward America and Americans, not only in the Arab world, but in South East Asia, South America, Central America, Africa, and Eastern Europe, as a direct result of our foreign policies. We have invaded, killed, maimed, threatened, and exploited more people and countries than any other nation this past 50 years. Americans are not liked for many reasons, so if the root causes say of terrorism are to be addressed, one must first address the real reasons that we are not liked. So a democracy devoid of any conscious foreign or domestic policy aimed at eliminating abuse and exploitation will necessarily be resented, while moral people may find it their duty to resist such or even any lack of resistance would add to the continued perpetuation of the injustices and abuse.
Likewise American domestic terrorism against the American Indians, the former black slaves, and the poor and disenfranchised is also of long standing injustice, reflecting motives of avarice, unfair advantage, exploitation, abuse, and power -- the arrogant powerful over the weak --the exploitation and abuse of the strong forced upon people whose arms are less developed. If the bigger stick wins in a competitively motivated system while leaving in its wake losers, may be the "norm" in a materialistic society obsessed with greed and power, but it is not justice, and it is not high civilization. What such a system of abuse and exploitation generates in the "losers" is resentment -- while prisons and laws of repression do not breed domestic peace or a sense of justice. Without a sense of justice, peace is not likely without further methods of repression, force, or violence; i.e., large military and police state apparatus. Of course this lack of peace and justice spreads fear, and as such it does not spread an aura of domestic or international security. Thus one may conclude that if it is in America's best interest not to be hated or feared,, then foreign and domestic policy should change. America's grandiose investment in prisons, police, war, and other methods of institutionalized murder and repression, reflects America's spiritual malaise -- not only in terms of estrangement from peace, justice, and love in terms of fear, hatred, suspicion, exploitation, and military means of violence) but also from her her separation from its founding principles. Such change (toward justice, peace, and freedom) would be our patriotic duty to effect.
On a larger scale, we may ask who would benefit from world peace? Would not all nations. Would not that gift be our patriotic duty to bequeath future generations? Would not a fertile earth with its top soil still fertile? An ocean unpolluted. A land not raped and poisoned?
So if patriotism is conformance to foundational principles of the land, we may ask where then is patriotism really rooted? It is rooted in the land in all of life -- in all our relations.
Winona LaDuke, an Anishinabeg (Chippewa) native American says; "Indigenous peoples believe fundamentally in natural law and a state of balance. We believe that all societies and cultural practices must exist in accordance with natural law in order to be sustainable We also believe that cultural diversity is as essential as biological diversity to maintaining sustainable societies. Indigenous peoples have lived on earth sustainably for thousands of years, and I suggest to you that indigenous ways of living are the only sustainable ways of living. Because of that, I believe there is something to be learned from indigenous thinking and indigenous ways. I don't think many of you would argue that industrial society is sustainable. I think that in two or three hundred years this society will be extinct because a society based on conquest cannot survive when there's nothing left to conquer. Indigenous people have taken great care to fashion their societies in accordance with natural law, which is the highest law. It is superior to the laws made by nations, states, and municipalities. It is the law to which we are all accountable". Native Americans honor their elders -- their founders and as such they are patriotic.
It is to this law, that war, oppression, violence, and aggression are banes of the planet -- they are to be found only when all other efforts have failed -- where people have failed in bringing about the fertile grounds to honor celebrate, and co-create -- to experience LOVE and healing. To that end we need to cultivate powerful medicine -- to identify the root causes of fear, violence, terror, distrust, hatred, resentment, greed, jealousy, and war and no longer feed it. After getting it all together at the final gathering which is no gathering at all -- not by the mind but with the Heart/Mind then, WE can manifest effective methods to to create lasting PEACE -- thus from this proactive space weapons of mass destruction, repressive institutions, poisons, and such nots that are created out of fear, distrust, and hatred will fall away as useless baggage. To act from a healing place -- a place of peace, justice, love, and integrity, requires that we KNOW such intimately from head to foot. Spirit never dies. Love is its natural embodiment. Let us sing it, dance it, see it and hear it in ALL OUR RELATIONS --Act in harmony all the time -- and let it flow out of Hearts, hands.and feet, right now -- always!
In the wider sense we are all relatives -- national boundaries are artificial -- we are all citizens of the earth and the universe. This is our more fundamental principle. What perhaps makes more sense (based on first principles -- as sharing this common love and land -- this good earth) in this declaration of Indigeneity.
We Pledge Allegiance as the Universal Life Force
Supporting All Awakening Beings
From This Planet Here We Stand United
One Great Being
One Rich and Vast Great Integrity
Intelligent, Interconnected, and Whole
Back to Current Events Page: Utilizing current events to disclose the underlying indigenous context of all our relations
The Real Cause of War: Spiritual Disconnect. War will end when enough people wake up
Toward a Healthy and Vital Politics: Love against Hate, Fear, and Greed - Healing Against Harm
Turkey Day Following 911 -- The Second Assault on America -- the Assault on Freedom from Within
Peace Pilgrim Website
Dalai Lama's Statement on Attacking the Root Causes of Terrorism
Martin Luther King: "Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break Silence"
Fritjof Capra: A Systemic Analysis of International Terrorism
John Trudell on Terrorism:
Follow the Leader Virus Infects Washington
Institutionalized Paranoia and Guilt: Denial, Dysfunction, and Symbiotic Co-dependence between Externalized Authority and the American Media to Promote and Exploit the Afghan War
The Emperor is Wearing No Clothes Syndrome: Double Talk, Hypocrisy, and Deceit in War
The Voice of Silence and the Crime of Passivity by Leonard Peltier
Denial, Dysfunction, Character Armoring, and Delusion in Modern America: Chronic Armoring Around Pain
Authoritarianism, Totalitarianism, Dogma, and Karma: Coming Home to Indigenous Space
American Gulag, by Jerome Miller
Ongwhehonwhe: The Real People Home Portal
Green and Indigenous Politics: The Politics and Power of Consciousness.
Rainbow's Political Link Pages
Rainbow's Indigenous/Aboriginal Link Pages
Rainbow's Ecology/Environmental Links