Sarah Silverman 'scared' at sight of American flag

Comedian Sarah Silverman told the audience on her Hulu show I Love You America that, at the sight of the American flag, she "instantly felt very weird.  It didn't make sense, but I felt...scared."

The reason?  "Nationalism."

Washington Times:

The talk-show host said she immediately questioned her boyfriend's motives, to which he responded, "Um, because I love America?"

"I was like, 'Right, right, of course,' but inside I was shaken," Ms. Silverman recalled.

"I had no idea why I was freaking out," she said, so she called her sister, a rabbi in Israel, to try to understand her feelings better.

Ms. Silverman went on to criticize President Trump's "nationalist" slogans like "Make America Great Again" and "America First" as problematic because they "exploit patriotism" and indicate that America is "No. 1" without acknowledging the need for change.

"As patriots, I think we should strive to see ourselves in each other, whereas I feel that the nationalist view is to see yourself and then others," she said. "There's a willing blindness in saying, 'We're No. 1.'"

"I fear that 'We're No. 1' nationalism is really like an old bed buddy of racism and xenophobia," she added.

She later said that while she "can get behind the flag," she can't accept the "We're No. 1" vibe as genuine patriotism.

"It's tacky," she said.

My take on the rise of nationalism in America. #ILYAmerica

— Sarah Silverman (@SarahKSilverman) December 8, 2017

Conflating "nationalism" with "patriotism" is a political construct that has nothing to do with reality.  Silverman, like many liberals, have decided to define nationalism extremely narrowly.  That definition equates the simple, heartfelt patriotism of most Americans with the virulent, racist nationalism of Nazi Germany.

That kind of hyper-nationalism was endemic in all of Europe for the first fifty years of the 20th century.  It led to two world wars and the Holocaust.

The perfectly legitimate belief in American exceptionalism has nothing whatsoever to do with the nationalism displayed by Nazis.  In fact, the attempt to do so says more about liberals than it does about most Americans.  It shows the left living in the past when "my country right or wrong" and "America: Love it or leave it" were catchphrases heard during the Vietnam war.  Following decades of scandal and those in power abusing their trust, few Americans compared to then take those words to heart.

You can love America and point out its errors, its troubled past, or its sins.  But without acknowledging America's triumphs, its generosity of spirit, its dedication to human freedom, and all the things that make us an exceptional nation, one can legitimately question what kind of "patriotism" Silverman and her ilk actually feel.