Un-Americans: A Philosophical Inquiry into the Colonial Perspective
Sunday, 16 March 2014
Let me begin by stating emphatically that it is un-American to call or accuse anyone of being un-American. Nowhere is being un-American as rampant as it is in America. Being un-American isn’t to be confused with being anti-American – the former being a state of not being American, the latter being a person who is against America. In order to fully understand this phenomenon, we must ask some fundamental questions that will help shed some light on whether or not un-Americans actually exist, such as what is American, and what are the key characteristics of being un-American?
To find out if un-Americans actually exist, we need look no further than St. Anselm’s Proslogium. Observe the following ontological argument:
- It is true by definition that un-Americans are beings which could not be less American.
- Un-Americans exist as an idea in the mind.
- A being that exists as an idea in the mind and in reality is, ceteris paribus, greater than a being that exists only as an idea in the mind.
- Thus, if un-Americans exist only as an idea in the mind, then we can imagine something that is even less American than un-Americans.
- But we cannot imagine something that is less American than un-Americans, because it is a contradiction to suppose that we can imagine a being less American than the complete embodiment of everything that an American is not – un-American.
- Therefore, un-Americans exist.
Attempting to define what American is can sometimes be difficult in light of the common mistake of confusing colonists with Americans, but the following definition represents the most accurate based on the historical record. American refers to any autochthonous historical, cultural, geographical, anthropological, biological, sociological, physical or non-physical manifestation that is commonly attributed to the peoples living in the geographical area that is known today as the United States of America, prior to colonization. Currently, this would include all tribes that enjoy federal tax-free gaming rights within the borders of the United States, commonly referred to as domestic dependent nations. Those that do not fit this description are rightly understood to be un-American.
There are myriad characteristics of being un-American. However, the crucial concept to keep in mind that distinguishes Americans from un-Americans is that generally speaking, un-Americans have no awareness of being un-American if they view themselves as American. That being said, the following are brief descriptions of being un-American that might be useful in understanding this phenomenon:
- An un-American is by definition someone who is less American than the person making the accusation of being un-American, or if you prefer, the accuser is more American than the accused. The reverse is also true.
- The Right believes that un-Americans have taken control of the country from Americans. The reverse is also true.
- When accused of being un-American by the Right it implies the following: anti-capitalist, communist, socialist.
- When accused of being un-American by the Left it implies the following: fascistic, authoritarian, plutocratic, anti-democratic.
- When accused of being un-American by either the Right or the Left, it means unpatriotic.
Phenomenologically, un-Americans are ignorantly in a state of existential crisis because they are completely divorced from the fact that they are the only true un-Americans, and those that levy the charge against others are painfully and ironically unaware of the tautological logic they are employing to describe who, and who are not, the righteous stewards of all things American, and the mere act of their obscene pontifications does more to illustrate their impiety than it does their self-professed wisdom as the saviors and protectors of this great republic.