What is Patriotism
It seems to be a good time to consider exactly what patriotism is and is not.
Most people associate patriotism exclusively with war. We must teach about the efforts of those immigrants who came before us and made it possible for us to enjoy the high standard of living they fought to attain. The love of the land and its people. Most of us who live in an urban environment might not have the same feelings about land that our ancestors felt, but we still become attached to places. Familiarity breeds affection. Who doesn’t feel affection for the areas where they born, grew up and lived?
What makes us unique as a people is not race or ethnicity or religion. Patriotism means defending the constitution. Our oaths in this country are to the Constitution, that written charter of government and basic rights. America’s founding philosophy. The Constitution is the very thing that makes America, America. Love and concern for our land and our people is the patriotic duty of every American.
We sometimes lose faith in people and institutions. Find reinforcement in finding what is good about our people and our country – we, as citizens, can do to make our country better.
We Americans suffer occasional setbacks, but we have so much to be proud of. There are those who have been around awhile can remember back to a time when it was more common for citizens to celebrate what was good about our country. We learned that through the sometimes “heroic,” and even non-heroic, actions of many of our citizens. Through them our country created a way of life that is the envy of other nations.
But where do we go now to rekindle that feeling of love for our country and for all the citizens in it? How can parents and grandparents instill their love of country and concern for the welfare of others into the hearts and minds of their children and grandchildren?
In our minds patriotism is more than love for one’s country. It’s accepting individual responsibility. You don’t have to be a hero to be a patriot. The average person can be a patriot by doing the extra things that make our country a better place in which we live. Registering to vote, educating yourself about public issues, supporting and voting for the best candidate and encouraging others to do the same are the actions of a patriot. The same for obeying laws and volunteering to help others.
Principals are honoring personal achievement, respecting the rights of others, helping our neighbors, inspiring good, and magnifying love of one’s country.
The activities surrounding September 11th serve to remind us that there is a need for a revival and rededication to those principals that have, and will continue to, make America great.
Patriotism is the love of one's country. It includes attachment to the country's land and people, admiration for its customs and traditions, pride in its history, and devotion to [next page]