Columns » Bob Lancaster

Patriotic gore



On the Fourth of July we'll push aside cobwebs and torn plastic and take up brief dusty residence again in the family Homeland Security bunker, our way of harking back to a more patriotic time.

I don't know what's happened to patriotism since those happy days when we were all spooked by unbottled djinn into these hideyholes, but something sure has.

How many multi-flag houses or cars do you see now, or flag butt-patches or do-rags?  And how many loud, rude, ostentatious flags, commanding salute, instead of meek, tasteful, little twerpy flags?.

And whole days go by now in which not one American dies in the fight to put a few slices of that mysterious yellow cake once so newsworthy on every Iraqi supper table.

This is so different from Vietnam, back in the super-patriotic time, where and when we really did care about big-picture patriotic issues like taking a patch of jungle from the Congs and holding it for maybe 48 hours before letting them have it back. 

And tomorrow marks the Gettysburg finale, which provided both sides with almost inexhaustible patriotic bragging rights. Gettysburg cost some lives and limbs, yes, but where would we be, patriotically speaking, without it? Think of the tourism lost, the re-enactors obliged to emote such lesser gore.

Honest Abe promised  those old boys the world would never forget what they did at Gettysburg, but I think the world has forgot. Look at Obama and tell me he doesn't care more about Michael Jackson passing than any one of those 53,000 blue or gray.

It's not right, but I can't throw stones because I've got a little foggy on the thing myself. Happened long ago, and I've sacrificed memory cells galore to strong drink and passing time. Not good excuses, I know. But self-exculpatory thinking is the rage, like Rush Limbaugh empathizing with this South Carolina whorehopper.

The whine is, you try to do the right thing, but you keep getting beat down and beat back by this dusky ruling claque of socialists, skirts and homos, until you finally just blow. You have no choice, and so aren't accountable. News accounts of men similarly unable to cope murdering their families — isn't this just a lite version of that, taking out the frustration on your loves ones, only here your weapon isn't your Smith or your Wesson, it's your Johnson?

So the whorehopping becomes just a charade of serious wrong-doing. A parody or parable of it. His wife and kids might suffer, but his political family understands — and surely God does too.. Remember how smooth and tidy King David's restoration to favor, the whorehopper was saying almost before the wick had dried from its latest dipping.

I'm talking the real God here, of course. Not the imposter with the pot belly, the one with six arms, the one that rhymes with Franklin D. Roosevelt's dog. The real McCoy God who quotes himself on all the billboards — he winks at serial whorehoppery.

It was the original intention that this interplay or frequent coincidence of God and patriotism would be today's topic, and if it's not too late I'll still have a go at that..

As gab-host Bro. Huckabee was explaining the other day, God let us win the American Revolution in exchange for another of those never-forget promises — that we'd never forget to give him the credit, preferably in loud public prayers and Fourth of July bloviations, and we'd never forget to post the Ten Commandments on all our public buildings and utility poles.

 We acknowledged our debt on the money and in the pledge, and poor old Roy Moore inscribed stelae until he had to be restrained, but otherwise we little noted nor long remembered.

Eleven score and some-odd years later, God ‘n' Country were still pleasantly entwined as the Iraq Mistake launched, finding magnum throat in several bombastic venues, including war prayers from the likes of Bro. Piggee Hagee, soon to become John McCain's pulpit dumpling, and the bullmoosed and whupass-ready Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, imploring the Almighty to rain swift ruin on our yonder enemies, whoever in this particular sally our enemies turned out to to be, if indeed we turned out to have any.

The patriotism quotient in these pleadings, you will understand, or Rush and the whorehopper would, required omitting any of the treacly appeals to goodness and mercy that wuss up the New Testament so. Shock and awe suit war prayers better.

 In those manly prayers might have been the last gasp hereabout of the old-time patriotic passion — patriotic enthusiasm in the old sense of the word. Now it's all tweets and computer-game rocket's glare, as unFourthy as those weenie flags. About the only trace of the vintage stuff is the so-called imprecatory praying of the deranged Arkansas-born California televangelist calling on R.M. God to strike President Obama dead — for some reason that might make sense to somebody somewhere.

Ahmadinenut maybe. Or Kim Jong-ill. Or the Coulter medusa with the snakes for hair.

Whorehoppers all, at least in the figurative.


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