Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Your Patriotism? Mine? How About Ours!

When I look across many posts on Facebook, especially around national holidays like Memorial Day, it would be easy to get the idea that only those on the right-wing are patriotic, only Republicans truly care for the country, and only those who served in the military are the truest patriots. On top of that, "liberals" are out to undermine the country, tear it apart, make it into a third-class nation. They don't care about veterans or the future of the "average American."

So I looked up the definition of patriotism:

love for or devotion to one's country.
Pretty basic. It says nothing about being in 100% agreement on issues. It says nothing about being liberal or conservative. It says nothing about serving in the military. It says nothing except that a patriot has love for one's country.

Now I realize that calling an opponents patriotism into question is an age-old political tactic. It has been used shamelessly for  centuries. It has been used to undermine, libel, persecute (and at times kill) those who have differing opinions.

It has been, at many times, disgraceful, mean, and unpatriotic. Yes, I said that. If my patriotism is dependent on putting your understanding down, then my patriotism does not support the democratic ideals and values that built this nation. In that case, I am not very patriotic! Yet we see that all the time. We attack, we point fingers, we put others into a place of "them" which means we don't have to listen to them. We don't have to dialogue with them if they are obviously unpatriotic and therefore not worth much.

How sad.

Liberals get moved by seeing the flag or singing (or playing) the Star Spangled Banner.

Liberals eyes tear up while standing on the hill at Arlington Cemetery at the thought of the veterans who served and died.

Liberals are just as much real Americans as anyone else.

Let's just stop this insanity. If anything is tearing this country apart it is our intense actions that divide us! It will not be ISIS or Al-Qaeda that cause us the most problem. In our day-in and day-out relations with each other it will be how we treat each other- and especially those who disagree with us. It will be in our using our "party lines" as human barriers to working together.

Sorry- that will not cut it in this world we live in. Never did, but it's more dangerous now.

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