Am I really very patriotic?

Well, I suppose that depends upon one’s definition of patriotism.

A scanning electron microscope image of normal...
A scanning electron microscope image of normal circulating human blood showing red blood cells, several types of white blood cells including lymphocytes, a monocyte, a neutrophil and many small disc-shaped platelets. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I could tell you that I bleed the colors of the American flag, or that my veins run red, white, and blue with the blood of the American spirit, or some similar pithy hogwash, and it would be partially true – red blood cells, white blood cells, oxygen-depleted blood cells returning to the heart to have more oxygen pumped into them – red, white, and blue. And American spirit? You define it, I’ll shine it. But aren’t we all American, at least in some ways? I’m quite independent and rebellious, but I guess I break from the mold by not trying to tell you how to think or believe, worship, love, et cetera. So I’m not 100% American, I guess.

Likewise, I’m just not 100% patriotic if your definition of patriotism involves some form of love, trust, or even desire for the Federal government. I have none of that. But I love America the place, America the idea. We have a beautiful land, we’ve built some wonderful cities, and thanks in large part to Theodore Roosevelt, we have some beautiful national parks. But what makes us better than any other country? Is there an

We have some great surfing, but so does Polynesia, Australia, Germany, Serbia, Africa. . . et al. Technology? Do the words “made in China” mean anything? Of course, we do have Elon Musk, and that’s kind of a huge bonus. Also Dean Kamen, and now Jeff Bezos is big news for dragging vintage rocket engines out of the ocean. So we have these big-time dotcom wealthy guys doing things for the thrill, for the gee-whiz and what-if factors. That’s totally American. But does that make me patriotic?

What is it that I love about America?

United States Capitol
United States Capitol (Photo credit: Jack’s LOST FILM)

I’m not being gassed by my government. I’m not oppressed, I’m not forced to do anything – well, except pay property taxes so that I’ll never really own my house; and pay income taxes so that the government can get its fingers into the pies of other nations under the guise of enforcing world peace, disenfranchise people in our own country, and piss away our social security contributions.

If I wanted to leave the country, I know where I’d go. We don’t have passports, of course, but that’s only part of what’s stopping us. The rest of it, I think, is that I’m fine with the American life.

I’d like to think I’m patriotic enough, but I’m not sure; in the end I just don’t have a clue. Part of me doesn’t want to say it because it sounds like it would be unpopular, but I just don’t get patriotism.

This post was prompted by today’s Daily Post prompt.


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