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Never Turn Down A Good Cup of Tea

Trump is wearing a mask, at last, say leftists. Even went as far as to tweet a picture of himself in a mask and say that wearing masks is patriotic and that he's the biggest patriot ever. 

I'm not kidding if you haven't seen this. It's real.

At first, I laughed. 
And then I was like, "You know? He's actually kinda right."

Maybe it is patriotic to wear a mask. 
Because, what does patriotism even mean? A loyalty or allegiance to one's country and fellowman. 

Which means: 

Nazi's were patriots. 
Communists were patriots. 
Democrats, republicans, libertarians; all of these are patriots. 

When the church was early and young, they thought it was wrong to give their allegiance to anyone but God. They were loyal and loving and kind to their fellow man, always ready to be as the Good Samaritan. But they did not worship a flag or set of nationalist ideals. God alone held their complete loyalty. 

Early Christians weren't patriots. 

And so, yes maybe it is patriotic to wear masks. But does that mean it's right, or even American? 

One of the things that set America apart from other nations is that America defied patriotism. She denounced her allegiance to England, said we will not pay tribute to you. She said, I will be loyal to none save the liberty to pursue my conscious. 

The revolutionary war was the result. 

I would never turn down a good cup of tea. And yet I would have been among those that refused to drink tea. I would have applauded the men who made of the Boston Tea Party. How do I know this? Because of how I currently stand on the issue of masks. 

Masks are not inherently evil. 
But the idea behind them is. Tea is good. Masks have their place. But the government belongs with neither. 

Freedom is what makes us American, not patriotism. 
Liberty is what connects us, not blind loyalty. 

"But," people say. "The issue of masks is not worth dying over."

Yes ... and no. 

It's not about masks.
It's wasn't about tea. 
When John Brown led his little rebellion people told him, "This is not the time."

He died fighting for his beliefs on what was considered an inconsequential hill by others. But he died because he knew he was fighting for something bigger even though the rest of the world could not see his vision and passion. 

We live in a time that celebrates non-existent freedoms during the 4th of July by shooting off colorful fireworks. But we have nothing. We are more akin to those whom we broke away from than those who first came to the States. 

The right to pursue life, liberty, and property no longer fully exists. Do I have the right to these things? Only if I have a license or permit from my voted rulers. I may not work, marry, drive, eat, live without paying for permission of some sort of fashion. And when they grant permission, we have signed over their right to dictate what that permission looks like. 

They officiate marriages even above the church, so of course, they may define marriage. 

They require licenses to drive, travel, etc, so they may take away any of those rights or privileges according to how they deem fit. 

They give the business licenses and permits, so of course, they may tell us how to run our establishment and who may or may not shop from us and what they are to wear. 

Masks are not the issue. They are the consequences of rights lost long ago. They are a covering, to keep us blinded from the real issue. 

So yes, you should rebel against wearing masks. 
You should claim your liberty. 
Be unpatriotic; be as Dietrich Bonhoeffer who followed God before man. 

It may appear as a hill not worth dying on. But hills are what battles are made from. And if we do not conquer the land while it needs conquering we will soon enough find ourselves pushed into a low valley with our enemies towering over us on their conquered mountain. We need to stop losing the small battles in the wait of something we consider worthier. Little things matter. By fighting for these things we may better prevent a large-scale blood-bath. 

So stand on your hill and fight. And who says you must die? Fight and live. Fight for freedom and live in liberty. 

Because I am trying to spread into the world of speaking and videos, here's my YouTube on this same topic. For some reason, it's a lot harder to speak than to write. Maybe some of you all can relate? 



Comments

  1. Y'know, I disagree on the definition of patriotism. Being a patriot means that you want the BEST for your country, not that you follow her blindly into whatever wrongs she wants to popularize at a given moment. The Nazis were not patriots--at least, not true ones; the Scholl siblings and the White Rose were. (Totally unrelated, but I just finished reading a biography of Sophie Scholl, partly thanks to you, my dear, and MY GOODNESS I AM UTTERLY IN LOVE WITH THE WHITE ROSE *ahem*)

    And that's why it's patriotic to NOT wear a mask: a true patriot doesn't want to see his country curling up and dying on itself all out of fear.

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    1. Megan, I'm going to have to disagree with you slightly, although I agree with your definition of patriotism. I don't think it's patriotic to not wear a mask. Not wearing masks makes it easier for one to spread and/or catch COVID, which means that not wearing masks would cause the country (at least, the very populous places--perhaps it's different in Montana, but I live in a major city) to curl up and die in a very literal sense, not only an economic sense. And the statistics bear this out--it's not just fear. Look at Europe, or compare King County with Fresno County. It's also a prudent and simply courteous thing to do--me wearing a mask protects the people I care about more than it protects me, meaning that I am personally protecting those I come in contact with by wearing a mask.

      Also: I'm not stalking you! I read Keturah's blog, too, but don't tend to comment. Have a good day, friend!

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    2. I completely agree that masks are the only way to save the economy.

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    3. So glad you're reading Sophie Scholl! Love your thoughts, as always! And yes, that's a more traditional view of patriotism. At first glance it seems noble ans best. But ... should we not wish the best for every person and nation, regardless if they be of us or not? Once you dig deeper, even into the noblest roots of patriotism, it does bring up some hard questions. Which is why mang early christians refused to have ties to earthly countries.

      Don't get me wrong. Sentiment has me in love with my country. But I try to not allow it to distort how I love the rest of the world.

      The samd goes for family loyalty. A beautiful thing, but taken too far can become toxic clannism.

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    4. Samantha, thanks for reading!

      I think we all have different views of what it means to care for others, and statistics are arbitrary according to the interpreter and even organizer.

      For me it's most kind to not live in fear; to not promote fear but rather life. I also am thinking of the 97% who are affected mentally, physically, and socially. The side effects of what we are doing to society and it's young will be with us for mang, many years. And that ought not be ignored.

      I do understand populated areas are different. And yet, even there I know people that are lonely and hurting. We were created to need people. And this extension of social distancing is harming far more people than it is killing/ "saving".

      Appreciate your thoughts!

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    5. But the way I see it, masks enable people to come together once more, and to shop in stores and fellowship together and even go to church, in areas where covid is spreading very rapidly.

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    6. You're welcome! I enjoy your blog. :)

      That's true: although I have seen several very persuasive studies which point towards masks being useful. In this case, as well, they're not hurting us, so as long as it seems like they may work, it makes sense to wear them.

      Wearing masks doesn't mean we're living in fear--in fact, they make it possible, during this time, to support the economy, to see people, even to hug people, on occasion, without being worried about our respiratory droplets spreading, as Wedricus the First pointed out.

      As you said, statistics are arbitrary--I'm curious where the 97% number came from? Of course, it's hard for everyone right now, and it's horrible for people to be lonely. But I think the worrying and loneliness would be worse if the numbers of infected people were higher. Masks allow us to visit with each other, and alleviate the loneliness!

      We were for sure created to need people! And I am sad for the people who don't have large families (as I do) to fill that need. There is definitely a need for a (possibly masked up!) ministry there. As a side note, my family doesn't usually use masks when we're interacting with people--only if we're in a crowd or at a store that requires them. We do social distance with friends, though, as studies show that that particular practice is very effective at preventing spread.

      Likewise! Thank you for your time. :)

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    7. Oooh we've got a DISCUSSION going here! I love discussions. (Also I'm late, sadness.)

      Samantha, of course I respect those who think masks make a difference; what I should've said is that it CAN be patriotic to not wear a mask. It can be equally patriotic to wear a mask. All depends on the intention. :) (Personally I'm not convinced masks can do a lot of good, considering how large the filter is in comparison to COVID? but I suppose droplets are a thing. I should read up on the issue.)

      Keturah, I agree that we should want the best for every people and nation. Your family analogy is good. To take it a step further, wouldn't toxic clannism not be true love for your family? Patriotism works the same way. An obsession is different from love; harmful nationalism is not loving your country too much, but loving it in the wrong way. Christians are called to be good citizens; not sure of my source, but I've heard that the early Christians were considered especially good soldiers in the Roman army. It was only when their country asked them to do something incompatible with their faith that they broke any ties. Like, we have to be WILLING to disobey, if we have to. But it's natural and good to be part of a community, and to respect the just laws that govern that community.

      (I mean, I feel like we really believe the same thing about patriotism? And I'm just kind of blabbering on and beating a dead horse at this point? So, sorry for any tedium occasioned by this comment. :D)

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    8. Discussions are fun! And I'm glad we call all discuss this in a reasonable fashion.

      True; intentions are definitely important! And my mom, who has done a lot of research, informs me that most COVID travels from person to person on (relatively large) respiratory droplets.

      Yes, Christians are called to be good citizens! The early Christians obeyed all the laws of their country that didn't conflict with conscience (and, may it be noted, Rome, and other countries they lived in didn't have the same rights as we do, i.e. freedom of speech, etc.). And it's really cool that they were considered good soldiers!

      I don't think you're beating a dead horse...but of course, I agree with you on most of this. :)

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    9. Y'all put me to shame; love reading the discussion as it's progressed, just been too busy with life to participate.

      Ah, Samantha thanks so, very much!

      The 97% are those that aren't of the 3% (those that die). When deciding how to seal with situations, we have to think about everyone affected. Which includes health, businesses, etc.

      The economy is in the situation it is because of how it was originally dealt with; little logic and a lot of paranoia. Yes, not everyone is acting in fear; many are doing what they are told because they think it is right to obey their government and think of the 3% that are dying. But too much sympathy, without reason, often leads to greater disaster such as we are witnessing.

      I get the argument for obeying authorities, and using the examples of the Romans and such. And I don't. The Israelites left Egypt. God didn't keep them in bondage forever in Babylon. Even Caesar fell. There came a time when a group of people decided to claim their lives as their own responsibility. Unlike the Israelites of the Old Testament who begged for a king, Americans said, "We will have no king but God." We took a land for ourselves and said we would govern ourselves. This means we don't obey a dictator anymore. We don't have "laws of the land" but ideals that ought to promote free living.

      Melissa, I don't see how masks protect us. Most people who are wearing masks are touch them, hardly wash them, etc. They are not only often disgusting and harmful, but toxic in that they are preventing us from fully returning to the idea of liberty. Some say they are allowing us to return; I say we need no-one's permission. If you want normal, claim it. That's what I've done and am doing by not wearing a mask and continuing to live life. And yes, I do still consider the 3% who are dying, thinking of them, not spitting of them, remaining health conscious myself. I just don't need a mask to do so.

      Megan, isn't it the funniest thing ever when two say the same thing, just with opposing language? But yes, I do love the purest form of patriotism that you describe. And yet, I prefer to not label myself a patriot, because I would rather promote the idea of doing what's best for anyone regardless of land and personal ties.

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  2. I think I finally have my thoughts together on why I disagree with you on masks.

    I sit "middle of the road" on a lot of the COVID stuff. I feel that ideally, masks should be part of the social contract. Most of the time, people wear clothes in public because that's part of the social contract. Yes, it's also mandated by law, but nobody has dreams about being naked in public because it's against the law. The dreams about being naked in public are due to
    fear of embarrassment.

    Similarly, during a pandemic, (or even a bad flu season) people should wear masks in public in order to avoid spreading unnecessary germs. This would be a freedom restriction, but one the society as a whole agrees to, not one a governor decides on by himself. Nobody argues you shouldn't wear clothes in public, and I think people should agree to wear masks in public areas when and where spread of germs is likely.

    I know the science behind masks is...fuzzy, at best. And I know that COVID is far less dangerous than we once imagined. But I also think it's probably best to avoid getting and spreading COVID, no matter what the death rate. I also think that applies to the flu and other nasty bugs.

    Between my grandparents and my recent introduction a healthcare field, I have become more and more aware of older people and their susceptibility when it comes to illness. It makes me feel awful when I think of how isolated some of them are becoming. And given the death rates for COVID in the older population, who can blame them for quarentining themselves?

    For the sake of older people, and those struggling with health issues, I think society in general should agree to take more precautions not to spread semi-serious illnesses. At some point, getting sick stops building people's immune systems and starts doing long-term damage and causing complications.

    I really think that people should be wearing masks while indoors right now, although I also agree with you that it shouldn't just be up to a governor. People should just agree "We don't want to get or spread this, so let's take this precaution until something better develops." (Not that people agree on things that easily...but just about everybody does wear clothes in public, so it's not impossible!)

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    1. I totally get being worried about those we know and love. I clean for many, many elderly people. My own mother is considered high risk. It's good to think about these people before ourselves.

      Clothing is such a tricky conparison. How much should we cover? Do we cover because of class or modesty? If because of modesty, is it the sort that portrays self-respect, or the sort that says, "I am protecting the eyes and lusts of those around me?"

      If because of lust, are we truly doing a suffiecient job? And do we blame rape on those who don't dress as "appropriately" as we'd like?

      We dress our bodies, yes. But our faces were not made to be covered. We can't always live excuding fear. Clothing doesn't say, "I'm dressing to stop rape."

      But masks do send a vibrant, fearful message.

      The science is fuzzy, as you say. Society needs smiles. It doesn't necessarily need to see belly buttons.

      Life is meant to be lived. Clothing helps, not hinders. And we have clothing to suit the occasion (banquets, hiking, motorcycling, karate, etc).

      Masks are more limited, and less life-giving.

      We don't live to prevent death.
      We live so that we might enjoy the life, then die contented.

      This doesn't mean we ignore death. It means we ignore the fear of death and wear smiles that illuminate the meaning of life.

      I do thank you for your thoughts, for reading, and for having your own opinion! We don't necessarily need more to agree with me, but for us to be able to think on our own feet and discuss of our own merit. Thanks once more!

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  3. *applauds* Love this post.

    I do disagree on the definition of patriotism a little... Chesterton talks about how really loving something does NOT mean you're blind to its faults or even that you let it get away with its faults; that if you really love somewhere/someone, you're willing even to change all the things about it that may characterize it in others' eyes, because you love IT and want the best for it. That's why you can love unlovable people and ugly places.
    You made a really apt comparison in a comment above, I think, because just as loving your family is a natural human healthy thing (there's something very wrong if no love exists within a family), I believe loving one's country is the same (there's also something very wrong if you have no affection for your country, no pride in its beauty, no sorrow in its failures and sins, no drive to fight for its soul). Patriotism is good and important, but just like family love, there are things that come before patriotism. Doesn't Christ say, 'If anyone comes to me and doesn't hate his mother and brother and wife and children, he can't be My disciple'? Your country does not come before following Christ and your conscience, but also, like family, you SHOULD love your country. At least that's what I think.
    And I don't think the American Revolution repudiated patriotism. I think they just put it in its proper place: they thought right and wrong came FIRST. In a way, they WERE patriotic. To their own people, to their own colony. Idk, that's what I think.

    Governments making these mask mandates is so wrong. Just like it was wrong that government could MAKE businesses shut down. I don't think wearing a mask is wrong, but telling people they HAVE to - that's so wrong. YOU DON'T GET TO KEEP PEOPLE SAFE. That liberty and privelege is THEIRS. That priority is all wrong (Megan wrote a lovely post about why "safety first" is such a wrong philosophy; you've probably read it, but I liked how she put all that). When I'm in a county where it's mandated, I tend to not wear a mask because even if it's a small and thoroughly ineffectual protest, I don't think you should give in to things that are wrong, even if they supposedly don't matter. Actually, everything matters. (In the county I live in now, it isn't mandated, but some stores ask you to wear one. I have less of a problem with that, though I wish people wouldn't live in fear.) And you're so right that we're not losing freedom over masks - they're just evidence of freedoms we've long lost, freedoms both political and spiritual.

    This reminded me of a quote I love: "Cowards live for the sake of living, but for heroes, life is a weapon, a thing to be spent, a gift to be given to the weak and the lost and the weary, even to the foolish and the cowardly." Life is NOT about staying alive. It's a thing to be spent, and we'd better be spending ours.

    (Haha, DEFINITELY easier to write than talk! You sound pretty good in the video though!)

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    1. oh, my. This comment is blog material worthy ;)

      First, I love how you just turned my analogy on me. Yes, I do have a love for my country, you're right. I mean, if I didn't, I suppose I'd be alright with just living anywhere, or wouldn't have cared so much about leaving Germany. I do love my country. I think that's why the current state of everything upsets me so. You are right. I love my country so much that I can't stand to accept anything but the greatness that it ought to be. I still hold tightly to the heritage of my American Dream. So maybe I am patriotic, even as I told Megan that I am not?

      I still refuse to identify with the word ;)

      YES, YES YES! Nothing wrong with wearing a mask; it's the commanding I find issue with. But even then, it's not the mask. We've set ourselves up for it by forgetting we are the government, that we don't set other over us so that we might obey them but that they might safeguard our rights. I haven't worn a mask, and to me it's not protesting masks, but the idea behind business permits, driving licenses, marriage licenses, etc. I am protesting the idea that we live in a Roman society. I am saying I am an American and I live under the Liberty granted to my through God and my heritage. I do not pay tribute to Caesar; God alone is my King.

      That quote. Wow. Gotta go look up who wrote it ;p
      (I'm behind reading other blogs, but will go check out Megan's post)

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