Rich Lowry: The Assault on America’s National Identity

I had a good laugh at this one.

National Review:

“The NFL has a new national anthem, or at least a rival to the old one.

According to reports last week, the NFL will play “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” commonly referred to as the black national anthem, before every game this year.

This is more than woke virtue-signaling, although it is assuredly that.

The NFL has been such a battlefield for the cultural struggle over the national anthem and protests because it long ago eclipsed baseball as the national pastime. Heretofore, as one would expect of such a thoroughly American sport, the league had identified itself with a robust patriotism (pre-game flyovers, gigantic American flags unfurled on the field, tributes to servicemembers . . . ).

That the NFL has swung drastically the other way is a sign that a new national identity is emerging to supplant the old. This new American identity is, of course, getting pushed by every lever of elite culture. It is defined by “anti-racism” instead of the American creed, Black Lives Matter instead of, say, the American Legion or Veterans of Foreign Wars, and new rituals, holidays, and heroes instead of ones that have been long established and, to this point, uncontroversial.

The national anthem? It will now compete with the black national anthem and, by implication, risks becoming the “white” national anthem.

Juneteenth is worthy of commemoration but is being set up as a competitor holiday to July 4. …”

Do you remember Rich Lowry’s book The Case for Nationalism? It was published in 2019. I reviewed it here in November 2019.

I highlighted some key quotes from the book:

“The conception of America as an ethnic nation, dominated first by British American Protestants, then more broadly by white Christians, and buttressed throughout by a racial caste system, wasn’t sustainable and shouldn’t have been sustained.”

This is what Lowry was saying less than a year before the George Floyd riots:

“This is not to say that we shouldn’t occasionally review our cultural – and statuary – landscape. Certainly, American Nationalists should have no particular brief for honoring Robert E. Lee. The Confederate general obviously wasn’t a Nazi, and his postwar emphasis on reconciliation was a great service to the country. Presented with a momentous choice between his nation and his native state of Virginia, though, he chose the latter and nearly brought our national government to its knees. Often, statues of him were erected after the war to try to sugarcoat the cause of the Confederacy. They can be removed to battlefields and museums without rending our cultural fabric (rather, mending it for African Americans, for whom the statues are an understandable affront).”

This was Rich Lowry’s idea of American Nationalism:

“We should have a more capacious and merciful self-understanding. We all are Thomas Jefferson and W. C. Handy, the Pilgrims and Frederick Douglass, British and African, black and white, sitting at a vast Thanksgiving table within sight of an an enormous flat-screen tuned to a Lions or Cowboys game under the watchful gaze of a red, white, and blue–bedecked Eagle, sharing, laughing, squabbling, commiserating, and doing it all loudly in the distinct, instantly recognizable American style that makes its indelible imprint on us all.”


What did Rich Lowry think would hold America together in late 2019?

He rejected the traditional pillars of American national identity – White (in race), Anglo-Saxon (in culture), Christian (in religion) and liberal republican (in political ideology) in favor of the same old MLK-based, post-World War II civic nationalism of Eastern milquetoast establishment conservatism which was clearly becoming unglued. Lowry’s idea of American Nationalism was watching patriotic pageantry at NFL games.

At the height of the George Floyd mania last summer when countless monuments were being toppled, Rich Lowry wrote in National Review that conservatives SHOULD NOT defend Confederate monuments. The overwhelming majority of Republican voters have rejected his argument.

National Review:

“In the wave of cancellations sweeping America, Confederate statues have been particularly hard hit.

They have been graffitied, assaulted, and torn down, while authorities rush to remove them.

For his part, President Donald Trump has been a steadfast defender of the statues and other forms of recognition of the Confederacy. He has come out in favor of preserving the names of military bases named after Confederate generals and pointedly said that we should build on our heritage rather than tear it down.

Conservatives tend to think the same way. They reflexively oppose politically correct campaigns to destroy anything giving offense.

They fear where the slippery slope of woke iconoclasm will lead — first it’s Jefferson Davis, ultimately George Washington.

They value tradition and worry we are trashing part of our history.

This impulse, though, is a mistake. Confederate statues and symbols deserve to be reevaluated, and often mothballed. …”

Why would anyone worry about a slippery slope?

This is someone who thought David French was a conservative star!

Note: Robert Barnwell Rhett predicted that one day that Lincoln’s Union would fall apart again due to its own corruption and absurd egalitarian ideology. It is a self-serving myth that slavery was the cause of the last conflict rather than sheer hatred and rejection of the East.

About Hunter Wallace 12381 Articles
Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Occidental Dissent


    • Unless NR publishes in Hell. Wifi might be spotty with all the iron. I can’t believe I fell for Buckley but then I used to read The Economist religiously.

  1. The National Review article linked to in this piece also referred to Virginian *George Rogers Clark* whose statue came down in C-ville on 7/11 as *Roger Clark*. A WaPo article that day called him *Rogers Clark*. How hard is it to Google him, look up one of the biographies written about him available at Amazon, or perhaps just read the base of the monument being taken down?
    I have been a long-time admirer of G.R.C., and posted an analysis of his statue coming down the morning after at my blog at the link below.

  2. Football would be more interesting with authentic tribal weapons like spears, shields and clubs. Maybe use something more delicate like a watermelon for scoring points.

    • Re: “Football would be more interesting with authentic tribal weapons like spears, shields and clubs”:

      The Zulu army was outfitted with a lot more firearms than the games and movies show, although they were mostly muskets with less range and accuracy than the British rifles.

  3. Further proof that WHITES need our own media.
    We need to escape this journalistic gibberish and have meaningful information.

  4. Last diary entry of the man who fired the 1st shot at Ft Sumter:

    I here declare my unmitigated hatred to Yankee rule – to all political, social and business connection with Yankees – and to the Yankee race. Would that I could impress the sentiments, in their full force, on every living southerner, and bequeath them to every one yet to be born! May such sentiments be held universally in the outraged and down-trodden South, though in silence and stillness, until the now far distant day shall arrive for just retribution for Yankee usurpation, oppression, and atrocious outrages – and for deliverance and vengeance for the now ruined, subjugated, and enslaved Southern States! May the maledictions of every victim to their malignity, press with full weight on the perfidious Yankee people and their perjured rulers – and especially on those of the invading forces who perpetrated, and their leaders and higher authorities who encouraged, directed or permitted, the unprecedented and generally extended outrages of robbery, rapine, and destruction, and house-burning, all committed contrary to the laws of war on non-combatant residents, and still worse in aged men and helpless women!
    Edmund Ruffin sen.
    Redmoor, 10 A.M., June 18th 1865
    The End

    May God Save the South!

    • “I here declare my unmitigated hatred to (…) the Yankee race”:

      There is no such thing as a “Yankee race,” but there is plenty of misdirected anger or hatred being generated in a fake “nation” (which describes the CSA as well as the USA) that is really just a for-profit business and private property protection arrangement.

      • The “Yankee” (New England) colonies and states were the most purely ethnically English, and even today Maine is the most ethnically English state, and Vermont and New Hampshire are close. I do not think “American” is an ethnic identity.

  5. That fucking punk & his empty flaggot “patriotism” is what’s being “reevaluated & mothballed” cuz Hymie ‘n’ Niggy Don’t Play Dat. And for that matter, neither do we.

  6. That conservative civic nationalist MLK America never existed either. These clowns think sitcoms and buddy cop movies from the 1980s are American history. It was all held together by harsh censorship and decades of White flight. All media, publishing, and academia were tightly controlled through the latter half of the 20th century. They didn’t have to deplatform so many people back then because thought criminals were never even given a platform in the first place.

    • People who have had to really work with Negroes know what they are really like. Those cop movies, like other forms of indoctrination, where they pair a white and a black, and have the usual hee-haw racial jokes, are stupid.

    • This is a very good point. The levels of gaslighting in the 1980s were astonishing. History curriculum on Holocaust, narrowly curated take on Apartheid, Reagan was a Conservative… It was all a potemkin village. The 1990s were actually better. Might be seen as a golden age of being left alone but at the same time fully able to plug in and speak freely.

  7. Lowry is your typical conservative. He knows what is going on but at the same time wants to keep his lifestyle and brand functioning. He makes half hearted observations. There is a whole industry of these people like Frum, Klavan, Zeidman, Mark Stein, Tucker, Ross Douhat, Dinesh. They walk the line and are able to find an audience similar to Fox News just repeating things like “the Constitution, freedom, liberty”

    • He will be writing a piece with his boyfriend, David French about the conservative case for making that stupid Juneteenth Day the new 4th of July and the black “national anthem” the new national anthem for everyone.

      What have these “conservatives” ever conserved? They couldn’t even conserve marriage or two genders so how do they expect to conserve anything else? They are really just continuing their grift while the clock runs out on the U.S.

  8. Conservatives are so used to losing, they except to lose. They also never seem to put up a fight. They go a,long to get along.

  9. This is the same coward who fired John Derbyshire and fed up Mark Steyn to the point that he left the magazine.

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