I am inclined to agree with him. Intense patriotism all too often leads to a complete decline in rationale. Debates on politics, morality, law (often on this very website) etc are no longer logically and sensibly dealt with, but subsumed into a mindless defence of one’s country. Government’s then use this weakness to perpetuate various deeds of questionable morality and to ensure their citizens resemble herds of vacuous sheep.
It’s fine to love one’s country. My sense of Britishness, for example, can border on the absurd. I love the fact we like to talk about the weather, play odd sports like cricket, engage in bizarre hobbies such as bird watching, not to mention our ironic, caustic, antic sense of humour, which I feel is rarely bettered.
However where England has flaws, and it has many, I look to address them on them on their own merits. The relationship between citizen and a government is healthy when it comes to mirror that of a dog and a lamppost. Accordingly, where necessary I will attack the government strongly and encourage others to do so. This is not attack on England but the government, so why conflate the two?
So please, next time you jump to defend your country like a Huxleian automaton, take a deep breath and use your brain instead.
After all, the country of your birth was just an accident, it’s not like you planned it that way.