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Patriotism: Refurbishing Our Home

Joined: 7/31/2013
Posts: 1
Today it is not uncommon that sons and daughters express a tinge of warmth and passion towards the country that they were born in. Growing up in this nation and having experienced its multifaceted forms of community, such as concerts and sports events, we have cultivated a special pride and attachment towards this place where we call home. It is no surprise that we have a sudden urge to become defensive whenever one mocks our country or tries to generate stereotypical depictions of our people. Whether we hear derogatory remarks about our land, the way we dress, eat, or simply, our culture, we would not tolerate such intolerance that we would stand up to our critics and denounce every statement they have made.
This behavior is generally known as patriotism, love for one’s country, which involves affection and a personal identification with the country. There are many ways of expressing patriotism—cheering on our fellow athletes during the Olympics, celebrating national holidays, and even hanging the country’s flag in our homes—but what really is the meaning of loving your country?
What qualifies as love for one’s country is not a hostile, chauvinistic pride that elevates one’s nation and brands others as inferior. Rather, the essence of this love is the spirit of concern, concern not only for our neighborhood, city, state, but also for our country. From its birth to the present day, America has encompassed this spirit throughout its history. Whenever problems arose in America, its people have been willing to step out from their private lives and to participate in protests, writing petitions, or other forms of civil disobedience in order to resolve these conflicts.
The Vietnam War, for instance, sparked an anti-war movement that gained momentum in college campuses. Students across the country held demonstrations and organized “teach-ins” to express their disapproval of the way the war was being conducted. Culminating into the Kent State shootings, the demonstrations brought national attention and sentiment against the Vietnam War, ultimately further quickening the end of the war. Upon the light of the Civil Rights Movement, demonstrators exposed the injustice of racial segregation and discrimination through boycotts to sit-ins to organizing the March on Washington. Even the twenty-first century America has had its own protest movements, such as Occupy Wall Street that aims to shed light on the economic disparity in our society.
All these large scale protests or movements underscore that we as Americans, seek change, specifically progress, towards a better home. We see that our home is not perfect: there are leaks on our roof, a malfunctioning heating system, and many other problems yet to be discovered. However, as Americans we ceaselessly continue to be active and vocal of our concerns of our country. Whether through protests or writing opinion pieces in newspapers, we generate a national awareness and discussion of our problems so that we will one day patch up those leaks and fix those defects. That is why I am proud of the United States of America.
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