Patriotism is part of our repertoire of civic ideals and identities, as Jean Bethke Elshtain reminded us. While its excesses and perversions are to be lamented, Patriotism rightly perceived yields a concern for the moral tenor of one’s culture.
Abraham Kuyper unquestionably had his failures and his blind spots. But he also labored to find balanced and faithful Christian realist positions on international affairs. We would do well to imitate those principles today.
I welcome the effort to give nationalism more depth because one of the more maddening features of political debate over the past few years is the difficulty in nailing down what exactly the nationalist side believes. In that spirit, I have some questions for the advocates of National Conservatism.