[Homestead] Patriotism and Pseudo-Patriotism

Gene GeRue genegerue at ruralize.com
Fri Sep 17 12:53:11 EDT 2004

>"What do we mean by patriotism in the context of our times? I venture to 
>suggest that what we mean is a sense of national responsibility ... a 
>patriotism which is not short, frenzied outbursts of emotion, but the 
>tranquil and steady dedication of a lifetime." - Adlai E. Stevenson 

Word definitions and attitudes change with the times. Today, patriotism 
among many is to put a flag or a bumper sticker on the pickup or the SUV, 
have a Bud and swagger. Citizens are sedated by full bellies and a lack of 
immediate danger--ancient kings and modern politicos used this. Immediate 
gratification thwarts memory. So we repeat mistakes on an irregular but 
predictable basis. And more and more often elect not those most capable, 
but those who lie best or play to our shallow pride. At no time in history 
has information been more readily available but many are lazy and accept 
truth as fed to them by masters of the spin. Too many of us are armchair 
experts seduced by the evening news. Maybe it's the childhood Lutheran in 
me; we need more pain.

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