conflate literally, to blow things together, implying a lack of precision and care; to confuse, to link inconsistent ideas
Americans are guilty of the sin of conflation. We have clear testimony from Scripture God holds both nations and individuals accountable to His Laws. We have clear testimony from Scripture He knows the difference, and the standards are obviously different between individuals and governments. Those who presume to lead bear a heavier burden.
On days like today, US Independence Day, you’ll see and hear attempts to stir emotional warmth about being Americans and living in a free country. We set off fireworks, picnic and barbecue, etc. Adults lecture mindless kids about what it all means. Unfortunately, it means nothing. Or rather, it means a lie. We are not a free country by any stretch of the imagination.
God would expect you to think highly of your own people. In fact, you cannot possibly obey His Laws if you don’t develop a sense of identity and belonging with your neighbors. “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Your welfare and that of your neighbor is linked in His sight. There is nothing wrong with saying you are proud to be an American, same as anyone else in their country.
It’s wrong to extend that sentiment and embrace everything your country does. If you don’t criticize something wrong, you don’t love your country. All the more so when the biggest sin of all is suggesting falsely the people are the government. It’s part of our official mythology, written into the very documents which state our national founding. It was most clearly enunciated by one of the biggest liars to ever serve as President of the United States: “government of the people, by the people, for the people”. It was a lie when he implied that was a description of the US, and it was a lie when it was implied by the founding fathers of the US in our Declaration of Independence. Today, if you echo the sentiments about human rights expressed in that declaration, you’ll be labeled a terrorist.
That’s the literal truth, not hyperbole.
Nor is it acceptable to fuss at government according to partisan political agendas. If you don’t understand how both major parties are part of the same evil oppression, you are in need of adult supervision. If you dare to suggest all our military exertions are somehow something of which we should be proud, you are evil. That’s not a political statement, despite what you may think. Our record of brutality exceeds that of any enemy God denounced in Scripture through the prophets. God raised up many prophets who bluntly condemned His own people for their sins, and it was typically dismissed as political speech. I’m not making a political statement here. The American government is under God’s wrath, and if you insist on holding up our national record as something worthy of pride, you are supporting all the sins of our government.
Don’t conflate your pride in the American people with cheering on the evil your government has done.