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Why Is Patriotism Still Relevant Today

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Nationalism Has No Place Here - But Patriotism Does
By Marian Baker, Staff WriterFormer Editor I remember the first time I did not feel like saying the words to the pledge of allegiance. No, it was not because I was tired, or because I hated America. It was because, for the first time in my life, I did not think America lived up to the words in its own pledge. I had just read a book on the creation and testing of the atomic bomb, and what I learned in that book had struck me very deeply. I realized then -- for the first time -- that America can make mistakes.
This was not the perception of America I had been taught in school or at home. My parents and teachers taught me that America was not only “One Nation Under God,” it was THE Nation Under
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(Please note, when I say “classical liberalism” here, I am referring to the political ideology that came out of the Enlightenment, not liberalism as we understand it in today’s political dichotomy.) This is not a natural union: nationalism and the ideals of classical liberalism, such as the freedom of speech, press and religion, do NOT go well together. Nationalism promotes the power of the group at the expense of individual rights, while classical liberalism proclaims the rights of an individual to be…show more content…
Patriotism, yes - it is important to love one’s country. But it is destructive to turn that into something exclusive, to say to yourself that one’s country is the best, period. This precludes growth: if your country is already the best, why should you ask it to get any better? Furthermore, to paraphrase one of my professors, nationalism is not a path you want to pursue - for once you start down that path, it is an extremely short distance to Nazi Germany or Sarmientine Argentina. It does not take generations to reach persecution and genocide - it takes mere
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