“In modern English, nationalism has become a dirty word. It is lumped together with racism, xenophobia, chauvinism, and intolerance. To accuse someone of harboring nationalistic views is a formula for exclusion.”
I share this piece for its thoughtful counterpoint to one of the letters the Pilot published today. The letter criticizes President Trump for expressing “nationalistic views.” The AT piece is written by Ewa Thompson, Research Professor of Slavic Studies at Rice University.
I agree with Dr. Thompson that nationalism doesn’t deserve to be treated pejoratively because a nation is comparable to a family, albeit much larger and more complex than a clan.
There’s no good reason for anyone to be embarrassed for being a nationalist, properly understood, just as there is no good reason for anyone to be embarrassed for being pro-family, especially one’s own.
Although I agree in some ways with the sense and sensibilities of the original letter, if I could I would encourage the writer to describe himself as an American nationalist.