Sunday is Loyalty Day, which celebrates loyalty, responsibility…and subservience to the country.
That’s right—Loyalty Day is a day set aside as a time for the “reaffirmation of loyalty to America.”
A little creepy, right?
Many Americans are rightly proud of their country and loyal to it—up to a point. Loyalty Day gives us the opportunity to reflect on the fact that the country was founded partially on opposition to blind loyalty to the British Crown.
At what point does respect and generic loyalty turn into obedience and absolute loyalty?
In the video below, Professor James Otteson uses the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to pose this question. Most of us follow the TSA’s orders to take off our shoes, remove coins from our pockets, and keep toothpaste to three ounces out of a sense of loyalty. But at what point would we resist? What if the TSA began mandatory body cavity searches of everyone as well? Would we still line up like lemmings out of a sense of loyalty to country?
Loyalty isn’t necessarily bad. But at some point, personal liberty trumps state loyalty. That’s the message we should remember on Loyalty Day.