Lawrence W. Reed’s opinion on the true meaning of patriotism is truly eye-opening. He explains that patriotism is not simply a feeling of sympathy for the lives of other Americans lost, and it is not expressed by throwing a big celebration on every national holiday or showing up to vote.
So if these things that many of us think are great expressions of true patriotism do not define patriotism, than what does? Well, Reed defines patriotism as the understanding, living, and teaching of the principles of freedom as well as the ideas that the Founding Father’s established in the Declaration of Independence. These ideas include that “all men are created equal and endowed not by government but by their Creator with certain unalienable rights. Among those rights are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Also, government must be limited to protecting the peace and preserving our liberties, and doing so through the consent of the governed, and it is the right of a free people to rid themselves of a government that becomes destructive of those ends.” By doing this, patriotism is rightfully expressed.
I agree with Lawrence Reed’s definition of patriotism. However, I feel that compassion and respect for our fellow Americans is simply an outward expression of our inner patriotism.
Before reading this article, I never fully understood the true meaning of patriotism, but America has more freedoms than any other country, and we should never be ungrateful for this privilege.