"I love America!" We hear it all the time. I see flags up and down my street. "I support our military." Is that all there is to patriotism?
In case you're wondering what set me off on this tangent. I watched The Sharks last night, a repeat, where one of the guys pitching his product was Donny McCall of Sparta, SC who had invented Invis-A-Rack, a cargo rack for pickup trucks that folds down out of site when it's not needed. The Sharks were assailing him for his insistence that the product be made in the USA, not in China, although that made it perhaps twice as much as what overseas manufacture would cost. Donny wanted to bring jobs back to his hometown, even though he had made no profit so far. I couldn't believe my ears!
Here was a man with a proposal that would be at least part of a solution to our economic situation, with a viable product, and these folks were castigating him for wanting to keep jobs in the USA. If I had a pickup, I'd buy one!
This nation owes China huge amounts of money, and they are building up their military like nobody's business. Who else would they need that kind of power against? I guess they figure if it comes to war with China, they can haul their butts to some neutral nation for the duration and keep doing business with China! They care nothing about the people who needs the jobs, nor the customers who want something that will hold up for the lifetime of the truck, nor their nation's economy.
Patriotism is more than serving in the military, waving the flag and voicing your love of America. I'm sure every one of those Sharks would say they love America. They'd be lying. They love money.
Patriotism is more than party, religous beliefs, ethnicity, race, gender, or profit. Patriotism is a strong nation able to defend itself, finance itself, and act as a giant billboard for its values. It is a concern for the people that make up the nation. It is a concern for the beauty of the nation.
Yes, I'm a liberal who does love America. This is why when I answer to polls, as I did this morning, that I believe this nation is on the wrong track., I'm NOT talking about who is in the White House. I'm talking about the incivility between the parties and their voters and the ugly things we say to one another. I'm talking about putting belief in the Bible ahead of science when science and technological superiority is going to make the difference over the next few decades at least. Putting entertainment above learning, and, yes, self-indulgence above having a society that wants to lift everyone up. It's self-indulgent to believe each of us got here on our efforts, and to believe that those who failed to achieve material success did so through "poor choices." It's self-indulgent to want to tell others how to live because of what we believe about God. It's self-indulgent to conform to one set of beliefs that doesn't fit all. Especially if we are not going to pay for "choices" we make for them.
Patriotism is the commitment to protect freedom for all Americans.