Patriotism is complicated.

Some people seem to think that being a patriot means you follow blindly. You support your country without question, you show no discontent or criticism, and you soldier on. A united front of sheep.

I disagree with this view. How can you truly love something, be it a person or country, if you can’t see it’s faults? How can you claim to be proud of your country if you refuse to constantly improve it? The most important part of patriotism is seeing when something is wrong. Seeing when something needs to be fixed. One must be willing to admit failure or fault in order to truly love something. Blind following helps no one.

I’m re-watching “The Newsroom”, an HBO masterpiece, and it has one of my favorite opening scenes ever (see it here). It makes me think about all the things I wish were different about America, and all the ways in which our government is set up to allow us to fix it when it needs a tune up. You wouldn’t refuse to take your car to the shop if it stopped working properly because you love it… You would bring it for a tune up, make sure it’s all working, and replace the radiator. Countries should work the same way.

Patriotism is hard.

Patriotism is complicated.


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