Dennis Prager addressed the left’s antipathy for national identities and nation states during a Tuesday speech he delivered at a Turning Point USA event for high school students in Washington, DC.
Prager said, “They don’t believe in borders. … They really don’t believe in the existence of the nation state. This bothers them. Israel just passed a law that it is a Jewish state. This drove the New York Times crazy. Why is that terrible? Because they don’t believe in national identities.”
America’s national identity, said Prager, is not grounded in race or ethnicity. He described American nationalism as grounded in ideas, values, and culture that transcend racial and ethnic lines.
Prager stated, “America is not an ethnicity. It is an idea, and if you get rid of that idea, you no longer have America.”
Prager remarked on the motto of e pluribus unum:
From many one. America is a multiracial, multiethnic country. It is not an issue. There is such a thing as Swedish ethnicity, Uruguayan, it doesn’t matter, whatever it might be, but there is no American ethnicity. There is American values. You subscribe to them, you become a citizen. It doesn’t matter if you came from Turkey, or Paraguay, or Ghana. Nobody gives a damn. We really don’t. This is the least racist, least xenophobic multiracial country in the history of the world.
Prager lamented the expansion of left-wing attitudes and policies across America’s history. He said, “I actually feel for your generation. You are not raised in the same country I was raised in. … You are inheriting a civil war, It hurts me to tell you this. You are not entering a happy America. It’s an America, once again, fighting for its idea.”
Prager noted left-wing ideology’s subversion of liberty and merit in pursuit of egalitarian material outcomes. “Equality and liberty are mutually exclusive,” he said. “Liberty allows for inequality. … Forced equality is totalitarianism.”
Prager rejected notions of human freedom as a universal yearning among people:
The human being responds naturally to leftism, not Americanism. Leftism is more natural. It says the state will take care of you. More people are interested in being taken care of than in being free. Liberty is not a universal yearning. Liberty is a value. … People think everyone wants to be free. If everyone wanted to be free, then there you be a lot of United States of Americas around. They don’t. They yearn to be taken care of. Americans yearned to be free.
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