am i a Canadian, a real Canadian, or a good Canadian?
am i a Canadian first and a human being second, or a human first and a Canadian second, or even lower in relation to me being a husband, father, teacher or poet?
is patriotism the last refuge of a scoundrel?
if i criticize Prime Sinister Harper, am i anti-Canada, anti-Canadian or against all ethnic groups that comprise Canada, thereby wishing upon us all a terrorist attack?
do i support Canadian troops if i call for their return from their imperial occupation of Afghanistan?
do i support Canadian troops if i call for them to not seek greater opportunity to take command of the Afghan occupation?
did the Canadian troops get together and work up a plan, and cost it out, and prepare for deaths and injuries and present it to Paul Martin and his government to convince him, it and the Canadian population that we should not declare war on the Taliban, yet invade and occupy Afghanistan, thereby meaning that if i don’t support the mission, then i don’t support the actual people in our military and their families?
is our military comprised of employees of the government, and by extension the citizenry, and committed to following the employer’s orders?
am i supporting the troops if i call Prime Sinister Harper a rhetoric criminal by saying i don’t support our troops if i don’t agree with his imperial, American Idol designs?
do i support our troops if i wish them to come home from a country where we don’t have sufficient personnel, money, equipment or civil will to continue fighting and defeating a fundamentalist Muslim Taliban in a failed state, in an alliance run by a de facto fundamentalist Christian theocracy comprised of corporate compradors with a penchant for stoking oil profits?
am i anti-Canadian, anti-troops, anti-America or anti-9/11 victims if i ask why there are fewer than 20,000 troops from NATO countries and friends of NATO countries trying to stop the Taliban, rebuild Afghanistan and find Emmanuel Goldstein, sorry, Osama bin Laden, while there are almost 7 times that number of just American troops keeping just enough anarchy in Iraq to foment a civil war?
am i cynical, anti-freedom, anti-democracy or a threat to our security and way of life if i even suggest that Osama bin Laden is our real-life version of Emmanuel Goldstein, a man better off at large than captured?
AM I THE ONLY NORTH AMERICAN WHO’S READ 1984?
am i anti-American if i criticize “President” Bush?
do the same questions about the rhetorical crime of supporting the troops apply equally well–or better–to the situation in the USA?
must i necessarily wish American soldiers to die if i don’t support their “president”, thereby not supporting the troops?
are Noam Chomsky and Phyllis Bennis anti-American if they criticize their imperial government?
and what about Israel?
am i anti-Semitic if i disagree with the domestic or foreign policy decisions of the de facto fundamentalist Jewish theocracy in Israel?
do i wish all Jews in the world dead because i don’t agree with any given decision of the Israeli government?
are Noam Chomsky and Phyllis Bennis self-hating Jews if they oppose any given decision or set of decisions of the Israeli government or decisions of the US government that support Israeli policy they disagree with?
am i threatening national security by asking these questions?
Copyright 2006, Stephen Buckley