I started thinking of myself as a Citizen of the World some years back, and I’ve even thought there should be an organization. But strangely, I’ve felt shy about publicizing the idea, for fear that someday I’d be subject to revocation of my American citizenship by some zealot with power. Perverse to the COW concept, though, I’m also rather proud to be an American. Just being associated with this particular philosophical experiment is rather cool.
[—> Just to be clear to anyone in government who might read this later, no, shithead, I’m not renouncing my citizenship. I was born in Texas, I’m proud to be an American, I vote, I pay taxes, I drive a Chevy truck, I support the American government and the Second Amendment, I shed tears when I see an American flag, I intend to stay a proud American until the day I die, paying taxes and voting until I’m as senile as Ronald Reagan. I ride horses with good American WESTERN saddles and not those sissy English ones.
I like eagles, and purple mountain majesties, and I can even be convinced to watch football on occasion. Fully half my body weight is made up of Texas barbecue and pecan pie, McDonald’s hamburgers and Dairy Queen shakes. Oh, yeah: John Wayne is the greatest American who ever lived, and Islam sucks donkey dicks. <—]
The really nasty part, of course, is realizing that the people who seem to be most shaping our American identity these days have little or no understanding of the concepts that underlie it. The people who’d accuse ME of being a bad American are philosophically just a few degrees shy of Stalin and Khrushchev (Glenn Beck, say), and are just about the worst living enemies of American ideas.
The COW concept plays out mostly in the way I view issues that come up, for instance, health insurance reform, or marijuana legalization. If they work anywhere, is seems to me they can work here, just from the fact that the people in those other places are not some distant THEM, but rather an US living in a slightly different place. In other words, Americanism is a subset of this much larger thing, and it’s silly to focus solely on this place as if it was the only geographical entity that contains real human beings capable of performing useful social experiments..
More than that, though, COW refutes Humanitism itself (is that a word? – it refers to a blindly homocentric mindset). What we humans really are is a subset of a much larger category, one that encompasses more than just the needs and opinions of Homo sapiens. The environmental movement already hosts a strong COW mindset – a Citizen of the World might occasionally make decisions or espouse viewpoints that deliberately refrain from giving human needs first priority – but even it doesn’t fully encompass the things I’m thinking. For instance, a COW would definitely doubt the “right” of the disgusting Octomom to have 9 kids, or the brainless Duggars to have 19. A COW would see the last mountain gorillas as anything but the disposable property of the country in which they reside.
Are you a COW? Or are there COWs out there? I can’t imagine I’m the only one to ever think of it, but there’s a weird silence on the issue that I can’t account for.