So it’s very common to see this moronic rhetorical question used against anyone that is criticizing aspects of the US or supporting aspects of China. It’s really just the “love it or leave it” trope often used by ignorant bigots. So, once and for all, here’s why this fallacy is ridiculous so that any future fool/troll (hence called “haters”) that wish to use that as a response to any argument thinking that it’s clever and effective will be better educated.
First of all, it is actually at least two bundled fallacies in one. One major fallacy that it commits is the false dilemma fallacy. It assumes that there are only two viable options available: namely, complete servile silence or agreement when it comes to the US or moving out of the US to some foreign country.
Obviously, restricting to these two options are not justified. One can live in this country and still criticize it without any contradiction. A third option may be the best option. One of the duties of any citizen, American or not, is to make their country better. The best way to do that is through constant vigilance and criticism where criticism is due. The Founding Fathers of America realized this. Haters often do not. Obviously, there are more options available than falling into servile silence or full endorsement on the one hand or leaving this country. One can criticize a country and still live in it even as a patriotic American. In fact, many patriotic people may view leaving the country as not an option not because they believe the US to be the best country but because they view leaving as a cowardly act not benefiting the country. Instead, staying and improving its deficiencies is viewed as the most patriotic choice, one that is most expressive of love for one’s country.
The fallacy is also a strawman fallacy. Because the haters often assumes that those who criticize the country don’t love it. They may also assume that those who criticize this country are, in fact, Americans or even live here.
All these assumptions may be false. First of all, many patriotic people may criticize this country precisely because they love it. They want this country to be the best it can possibly be. Just as I may complain about my house having certain structural defects and still love my house, I may criticize my country and still love it. In fact, in criticizing my house’s defects and trying to fix it, I am demonstrating a love of my house in not letting it fall into dilapidation.
Furthermore, one may assume that a person that criticizes the US actually lives in the US. Several of the bloggers here either live in another country full time or part time. Though all bloggers here as far as I know, have lived extensively in the US, many choose to live a large portion of their lives in other countries. Some aren’t even US citizens. So obviously, telling them to move out of the country is comically stupid.
Haters may also have the assumption that by living in the US it is a kind of tacit agreement that the US is the best country in the world for why would you live here when you can live anywhere else? This is silly. Even if someone living in America really disliked America and wanted to move to another country, that may be difficult to do. Countries in other parts of the world simply don’t just let anyone move in. One has to go through many procedures and even then, may not let you in. I’ve known many Americans who have or want to move to Canada or some other country permanently. There may be little choice to live in the US. Those who do have a choice sometimes do move out. For example, a large portion of Chinese citizens who studied in the US are known as “sea turtles” or those who study in the US but eventually move back to China. Other practical difficulties with moving or immigrating out is that some people may have family, work, friends, spouses, etc in the US and that makes moving out difficult even when wishes to.