Click amount to donate direct to CounterPunch
  • $25
  • $50
  • $100
  • $500
  • $other
  • use PayPal
Please Support CounterPunch’s Annual Fund Drive
We don’t run corporate ads. We don’t shake our readers down for money every month or every quarter like some other sites out there. We only ask you once a year, but when we ask we mean it. So, please, help as much as you can. We provide our site for free to all, but the bandwidth we pay to do so doesn’t come cheap. All contributions are tax-deductible.
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

May Day at Yankee Stadium

“We have two American flags always: one for the rich and one for the poor. When the rich fly, it means that things are under control; when the poor fly, it means danger, revolution, anarchy.”

-Henry Miller

My wife Michele and I went to the Yankee game on May Day last year (2004). They gave out free caps. “NY” on the front, of course…and a shiny patch on the back of the hat acknowledged the giveaway day sponsor: Hess.

The House that Ruth Built became a moveable ad for oil (instant replays brought to you by Dodge).

The seventh inning stretch required fans to stand in honor of the “men and women in uniform” who fight to “preserve our way of life.” Fifty thousand removed their free caps, watched a digitized flag wave on the big screen, and held the Hess patch over cholesterol-laden hearts while belting out “God Bless America,” collectively choosing to ignore the blood being spilled to keep the world safe for petroleum (Michele and I opted for a strategic bathroom break at that point). The Yankees won and many of the fans promptly rushed out to drive home in their ubiquitous SUVs…adorned, of course, with the ubiquitous “support the troops” yellow ribbon sticker.

Surely I wasn’t the only one contemplating this “my country right or wrong” concept of patriotism…but just as surely, if I had articulated those feelings, some of my fellow Yankee fans would have responded with overt hostility.

I know this from experience. For example, when I wrote an article about Pat Tillman that was critical of the hero worship upon his death, many patriots sent e-mails that voiced sentiments like this: “What really sickens me is that good people like Pat died so you can talk shit about him.”

It seems what offends this breed of flag-waver most is when someone else actually exercises the freedom they claim to adore…the freedom they believe someone like Tillman kills to defend.

To such folks, says Michael Parenti, “America is a simplified ideological abstraction, an emotive symbol represented by other abstract symbols like the flag. It is the object of a faithlike devotion, unencumbered by honest history.” For them, Parenti adds: “Those who do not share in this uncritical Americanism ought to go live in some other country.”

I might add: Those with plans to celebrate May Day might also try “some other country.”

In 2005, let’s at least wish a Happy 175th B’day to Mother Jones.

MICKEY Z. is currently writing a book on related topics, “50 American Revolutions: People’s Patriotism Since 1776,” to be released by Disinformation in fall 2005. He can be found on the Web at http://www.mickeyz.net.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

More articles by:

Mickey Z. is the author of 12 books, most recently Occupy this Book: Mickey Z. on Activism. Until the laws are changed or the power runs out, he can be found on the Web here. Anyone wishing to support his activist efforts can do so by making a donation here. This piece first appeared at World Trust News.  

October 16, 2018
Rob Seimetz
Talking About Death While In Decadence
Kent Paterson
Fifty Years of Mexican October
Robert Fantina
Trump, Iran and Sanctions
Greg Macdougall
Indigenous Suicide in Canada
Kenneth Surin
On Reading the Diaries of Tony Benn, Britain’s Greatest Labour Politician
Thomas Knapp
Facebook Meddles in the 2018 Midterm Elections
Muhammad Othman
Khashoggi and Demetracopoulos
Gerry Brown
Lies, Damn Lies & Statistics: How the US Weaponizes Them to Accuse  China of Debt Trap Diplomacy
Christian Ingo Lenz Dunker – Peter Lehman
The Brazilian Presidential Elections and “The Rules of The Game”
Robert Fisk
What a Forgotten Shipwreck in the Irish Sea Can Tell Us About Brexit
Martin Billheimer
Here Cochise Everywhere
David Swanson
Humanitarian Bombs
Dean Baker
The Federal Reserve is Not a Church
October 15, 2018
Rob Urie
Climate Crisis is Upon Us
Conn Hallinan
Syria’s Chessboard
Patrick Cockburn
The Saudi Atrocities in Yemen are a Worse Story Than the Disappearance of Jamal Khashoggi
Sheldon Richman
Trump’s Middle East Delusions Persist
Justin T. McPhee
Uberrima Fides? Witness K, East Timor and the Economy of Espionage
Tom Gill
Spain’s Left Turn?
Jeff Cohen
Few Democrats Offer Alternatives to War-Weary Voters
Dean Baker
Corporate Debt Scares
Gary Leupp
The Khashoggi Affair and and the Anti-Iran Axis
Russell Mokhiber
Sarah Chayes Calls on West Virginians to Write In No More Manchins
Clark T. Scott
Acclimated Behaviorisms
Kary Love
Evolution of Religion
Colin Todhunter
From GM Potatoes to Glyphosate: Regulatory Delinquency and Toxic Agriculture
Binoy Kampmark
Evacuating Nauru: Médecins Sans Frontières and Australia’s Refugee Dilemma
Marvin Kitman
The Kitman Plan for Peace in the Middle East: Two Proposals
Weekend Edition
October 12, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Becky Grant
My History with Alexander Cockburn and The Financial Future of CounterPunch
Paul Street
For Popular Sovereignty, Beyond Absurdity
Nick Pemberton
The Colonial Pantsuit: What We Didn’t Want to Know About Africa
Jeffrey St. Clair
The Summer of No Return
Jeff Halper
Choices Made: From Zionist Settler Colonialism to Decolonization
Gary Leupp
The Khashoggi Incident: Trump’s Special Relationship With the Saudi Monarchy
Andrew Levine
Democrats: Boost, Knock, Enthuse
Barbara Kantz
The Deportation Crisis: Report From Long Island
Doug Johnson
Nate Silver and 538’s Measurable 3.5% Democratic Bias and the 2018 House Race
Gwen Carr
This Stops Today: Seeking Justice for My Son Eric Garner
Robert Hunziker
Peak Carbon Emissions By 2020, or Else!
Arshad Khan
Is There Hope on a World Warming at 1.5 Degrees Celsius?
David Rosen
Packing the Supreme Court in the 21stCentury
Brian Cloughley
Trump’s Threats of Death and Destruction
Joel A. Harrison
The Case for a Non-Profit Single-Payer Healthcare System
Ramzy Baroud
That Single Line of Blood: Nassir al-Mosabeh and Mohammed al-Durrah
Zhivko Illeieff
Addiction and Microtargeting: How “Social” Networks Expose us to Manipulation
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail