Nationalism is the religion of the state.
One of the first things I remember about going to elementary school was learning how to draw the flag. I remember being told glamorized stories and falsehoods to make it seem as if the cedars were something sacred. Imposition of nationalism is woven into art, literature, it suffuses the mainstream political discourse, not to mention the fact that we are required, from about age five, to eighteen, to pledge fealty to the state by singing the national anthem, every day or Mondays, in most public schools. We are inundated with it, cradle to grave. It’s so ubiquitous, and omnipresent it becomes invisible to most people.
The country gets sold to us our whole lives in a variety of forms forcing us refugees & ‘natives’ to become trapped creatures beginning to love the location where we’re trapped.
I have to bring up the ideological justification of feudalism= ‘great chain of being’: God gave power to the king, your position in society is divinely ordained & then appeared the idea of ‘nationhood’, that we have common interest according to cultural traits embodied in the state thus your position in society is ordained according to race or culture. The Bourgeoisie created nation states and therefore created a labor force, uniting all the provincial local people into a “national” people with one language, often a shared education that taught uniform skills, used the “What’s good for the nation is good for the people” (to the bourgoise of course that means what’s good for them and their economy). This united different ‘classes’ into a “mass”, created an identity that suggests that a worker or farmer or billionaire from one place/race have more in common than counterpart farmers or workers or bosses in different places. It’s a kind of false universality (that helps the ruling class, obviously which is why it’s promoted and idealized) that isn’t based on interests (like basing your identity on and finding community with Metalheads or Punk Rockers – both of which I fully support people doing as an alternative to patriotism). This notion makes it easier for the people to rally around the idea that those evil immigrants and refugees are the reason for the economic problems and, if only the country sticks together and kicks them out as it did in those mythical olden days, we can be a strong, proud, and prosperous nation.
And then when we say we want to combat nationalism because it promotes racism, they shut us with: Highlight diversity. Migrants & refugees may bring from their native countries different languages, religions, cuisines, habits, customs, etc, and it’s a good thing to advocate tolerance of these differences. But we need to go beyond mere tolerance, and argue that these differences aren’t by any means as ‘inherent’ as they may at first appear, and that, moreover, they’re in fact fairly superficial in nature in comparison with the real, objective basis which unites people on an international basis. This is quite in contrast to the petit-bourgeois multiculturalist approach, which of course has no interest whatsoever in unity, and celebrates ethnic differences as though they were an end in themselves. It is important to point out that a discourse which relentlessly highlights ‘cultural diversity’ can only have a detrimental impact on the solidarity of people and their need to develop a rich and common and diverse internationalist culture against their international class enemy.
I really suck at conlusions so to wrap it up:
“There’s no flag big enough to cover up the killing of innocent people”.