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  1. #1
    not to be trusted miss fortune's Avatar
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    Default My country, right or wrong?

    I've met quite a few supposedly intelligent people over the years who have argued to me that it's wrong not to support your country- even if it's royally f-ing things up.

    I've been informed that the real meaning of patriotism is to stick by your country no matter what it does (kind of like "stand by your man" I guess), and that my criticism of certain decisions made by the government means that I'm not a patriotic citizen.

    Is criticizing your country a lack of patriotism or a form of it?

    Are there times when a citizen should STFU and support what thier country is doing even if they disagree?
    “Oh, we're always alright. You remember that. We happen to other people.” -Terry Pratchett

  2. #2
    Sniffles
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    GK Chesterton hit the nail on the head when he stated that saying "My country right or wrong" is akin to saying "My mother drunk or sober".

    When your country is doing something wrong, then it's your duty as a patriot to criticise it. Not out of hatred, but of love and concern for your country. A true patriot wishes for his country to stand in righteousness.

    A good example of what I'm talking about is the example of Bl. Bishop von Galen, who oppenly attacked the brutalities of the Nazi regime, especially its euthanasia programs. When many Nazis claimed he was a traitor undermining German morale, von Galen replied to them, "As a German, as a decent citizen I demand justice."

    I'll have to add more later.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Hexis's Avatar
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    I feel im pretty patriotic, I love seeing my flag fly high I respect my veterans and glad theres people out there willing to do that job, needless to say I love my county.

    My government however, more often than not, I can not stand. Bad decisions have been made by very stupid individuals and they should be punished but not the country itself.
    SDMF

  4. #4
    not to be trusted miss fortune's Avatar
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    I've always thought that you're better for criticizing that which destroys your country than merely sitting back and supporting the powers that be.

    Interesting how quotes get twisted throughout history isn't it?
    “Oh, we're always alright. You remember that. We happen to other people.” -Terry Pratchett

  5. #5
    Sniffles
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    Quote Originally Posted by whatever View Post

    Interesting how quotes get twisted throughout history isn't it?
    Yes it is. The actual quote reads:

    "My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right."
    -Senator Carl Schurz 1872


    So the original saying was never meant to promote blind obedience under the cover of patriotism. In fact numerous times Schurz condemned such an attitude.

  6. #6
    Kickin' Ass since 1984 GargoylesLegacy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peguy View Post
    When your country is doing something wrong, then it's your duty as a patriot to criticise it. Not out of hatred, but of love and concern for your country. A true patriot wishes for his country to stand in righteousness.
    Once again, I must strongly agree with Peguy.
    I think it is wrong and actually even dangerous if you just say "Yes and Amen" to Everything, no matter if it's about Patriotism or Anything else. We saw where that lead to in WWII.
    Rule #1: Driver picks the music. Shotgun shuts his cakehole.

    Again, Demons I get, but people are just crazy.

    ESTP? o.O

  7. #7
    Senior Member Eileen's Avatar
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    I agree with Peguy, and I think that whatever's "stand by your man" analogy is right on target too. I believe that true patriotism demands that one's country be everything that it can and should be. Where it fails, it should be criticized until it changes.
    INFJ

    "I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be. You can never be what you ought to be until I am what I ought to be. This is the interrelated structure of reality." -Martin Luther King, Jr.

  8. #8
    Senior Member bluebell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peguy View Post
    When your country is doing something wrong, then it's your duty as a patriot to criticise it. Not out of hatred, but of love and concern for your country. A true patriot wishes for his country to stand in righteousness.
    That's how I see it, although I actually really dislike the word 'patriot'. I'd rather use the word 'citizen'.
    ...so much smoke pouring out of each chromosome.

  9. #9

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    I always tend to see my country as an extended family. That's why I react very strongly when I see people say things like "I'm ashamed to be American" or "not MY president", or when they travel to Europe and pretend to be Canadian. Things like that aren't patriotic, they're ways of distancing yourself. Would you say your brother is not your brother because he did something wrong?

    I think we have the right and duty to push for change when things are wrong. Absolutely. But the mean-spiritedness, the hate and the obvious choosing up of sides are sickening to me. When a family member does something wrong or gets in trouble, do we call them names and write them off as irredeemable? Or do we help them? This is also why I didn't appreciate unsolicited advice from around the world on how to vote. If my brother screws up, it's okay for me to yell at him. We're family. It's not okay for you to do it.

    I understand that for some people your country is just a place that you happen to live. And if that's the case, then I guess none of this means anything to you. I think that's too bad.
    Everybody have fun tonight. Everybody Wang Chung tonight.

    Johari
    /Nohari

  10. #10
    Senior Member ptgatsby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EffEmDoubleyou View Post
    I understand that for some people your country is just a place that you happen to live. And if that's the case, then I guess none of this means anything to you. I think that's too bad.
    Take it to an extreme - if your brother killed someone, would you turn him in? Or rationalise it?

    I don't have much pride in my country, because I think the pride one should feel doesn't come from large scale indirect bonds. I believe it comes close to home - pride in having a good household, pride in your school, pride in your block and so forth. However, I do not have pride because of their name, but because of what they do and my part in it.

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