Patriotism

What is a Patriot? One who fights for the country or one who takes advantage of the freedoms enjoyed by the country they live in?
Is it the guy who salutes when the flag goes by, or says the Pledge of Allegiance out loud and proudly when the colors are presented? Is it the person who runs to catch the flag before it hits the ground? How about the person who refuses to get up during a flag salute?The person who won’t enlist in the army? We need to define these.

Let’s look at a site I found on Anti-Patriotism:

Anti-patriotism

I’ve always been against patriotism.  I remember in elementary school arguing with my teacher about it.  She said “America is the best country in the world.”  I then questioned her on what criteria was used.  I knew internally that the only reason she felt it was the best is because she was born here.  

As I grew up, I read the works of great anti-patriots, like Emma Goldman and Leo Tolstoy.  Their words expressed my feelings.  I think Tolstoy summed up the evils of patriotism best:

 In the schools, they kindle patriotism in the children by means of histories describing their own people as the best of all peoples and always in the right. Among adults they kindle it by spectacles, jubilees, monuments, and by a lying patriotic press. Above all, they inflame patriotism in this way: perpetrating every kind of harshness and injustice against other nations, they provoke in them enmity towards their own people, and then in turn exploit that enmity to embitter their people against the foreigner.

Here are a few of my favorite anti-patriotism quotes. 

Patriotism is the last refuge of scoundrels. 
– Samuel Johnson 

Patriotism is the willingness to kill and be killed for trivial reasons. 
– Bertrand Russell

Patriotism is your conviction that this country is superior to all other countries because you were born in it 
– George Bernard Shaw

Patriotism is the virtue of the vicious
– Oscar Wilde 

Patriotism is a pernicious, psychopathic form of idiocy.
– George Bernard Shaw

You will never have a quiet world until you knock the patriotism out of the human race.
-George Bernard Shaw

“My country, right or wrong,” is a thing that no patriot would think of saying except in a desperate case. It is like saying, “My mother, drunk or sober.”
 G. K. Chesterton

Patriotism in its simplest, clearest, and most indubitable signification is nothing else but a means of obtaining for the rulers their ambitions and covetous desires, and for the ruled the abdication of human dignity, reason, and conscience, and a slavish enthralment to those in power.
– Leo Tolstoy

The time is fast approaching when to call a man a patriot will be the deepest insult you can of him. Patriotism now means advocating plunder in the interest of the privileged classes of the particular State system into which we have happened to be born.
– Leo Tolstoy

I remember reading Tolstoy’s words that “to call a man a patriot will be the deepest insult you can of him.”  I’m still waiting for that day.

 

Really ???? So Love of Country is Bad?

 

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