We conservatives have observed wryly that even in gun-deprived Canada, it was “a good guy with a gun” that stopped the mass murderer who had already taken the life of Nathan Cirillo, the heroic Canadian soldier at the Tomb of the Unknown. Yet the more compelling irony is the fact that Canada–quasi-socialist, touchy-feely internationalist Canada–summoned more patriotism in 24 hours than we Americans have in the past six years.
We Americans want to be a part of it. So much so, in fact, that the Pittsburgh Penguins and their fans sang “O Canada” at a home game against the Philadelphia Flyers on Wednesday evening.
We used to do that with our own songs and symbols–we still do, when given the opportunity.
Yet we rarely are. Instead, our victories are turned into campaign riffs–“Osama bin Laden is dead and General Motors is alive”–before we’ve savored them.