At some point over the course of 2006, I all but gave up my strong political beliefs of disliking liberal-minded policies and lauding conservative-minded ones. Granted, I still vote Republican but that’s because I think the Democratic Party is disorganized and, at this point in time, it fundamentally does not have the right path for this country. This has nothing to do with any wars in foreign nations or any media-fueled policy debates – it has to do with what I call “Putting America First.”
Fleshing that out is a post for another time, though. I bring this up so that you won’t think my review of Why the Left Hates America is written from a hardcore, right-wing slant. I bought this book (in the $5 bin at Barnes & Noble) about a year ago. I probably should have looked a little closer because the book was published in 2002 and much of what is talked about in the book is dated. However, here’s my review anyway!
Author Daniel J. Flynn makes a clear distinction to open the book. Namely this is that he is NOT talking about the Democrats or liberal-minded policy analysts when he says the “left” hates America. For Flynn, he uses words for what they are (something I admire); in other words, his “left” refers to the extremists who go beyond the liberal ideas of a Nancy Pelosi or a Ted Kennedy. Though the truth is that many of today’s liberals are unfortunately heavily influenced by Flynn’s “left.”
So who are these leftists that Flynn talks about? Well, he begins by citing internal attacks against America from the inside going as far back as the 1800’s. Much of what drove these attacks were not physical disagreements or land disputes, but rather an ideological disagreement between the dissidents and the government. How was this dissidence most blatantly and prominently displayed in modern times? Communists!
Flynn cites many cases where Communists were found employed by the United States government, yet under the direction of the Soviet Union. This part of the book also talks about how the theoretical underpinnings of social revolution in Europe eventually made their way to America and have taken root in our collegiate system (which, anyone who is unbiased and attends America’s colleges can easily tell you is true).
Then he talks about something that I feel quite strongly about and though he doesn’t use this title to describe it, he talks about the bastardization of certain words in the English language. What does that mean? That’s when people use the word “tolerance” to describe a non-violent acceptance of every thought, idea, or way of life in the world…except those with which they disagree. How many times can you watch a cable television talk show and hear a pundit say that we all need to hold hands and sing kumbaya and then in the next sentence have that person bash America’s Heartland, the Catholic Church, conservative values, or any of a myriad of causes or institutes that are not included in their definition of “tolerance?” It’s mind-boggling.
Or how about the asshole who talks about the need for multiculturalism and then rails on about how Western Civilization (a.k.a. white Anglo-Saxon males) are the cause of all of the world’s pains? These people are the far left that Flynn talks about – he cites two different times when academics actually take up and revel in the literary works of people who told blatant lies about other cultures. And all in the name of proving their point and being able to tell America, “You’re wrong.”
I won’t give away the rest of the book, but Flynn begins to talk about how Hollywood hates America and has embraced anti-American causes, etc. For anyone beginning to get into this type of political debate, I recommend this book. As for those of us who have been more politically engaged over the last few years, you can pass this one by.