“”Patriotism is your conviction that this country is superior to all other countries because you were born in it.
|—George Bernard Shaw|
Patriotism is a love and/or devotion to one's own country or nation. It is a form of collectivism at a national level. A patriot, therefore, is someone who supports his country; sometimes unquestioningly, possibly ignoring his country's faults while doing so. As you can pick a fault or two with pretty much any country, those who describe themselves as patriots usually use emotion rather than logic when defending their positions. According to Samuel Johnson, "Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel".
American patriots are notable due to the yellow magnets on their SUVs, and their support of whomever seems to be the most "anti-terrorist." Also, they hate any form of "hyphenated American" (except Irish, they're ok now) and do not accept treasonous ideas on the following issues: culture, language, or borders.
British patriots are noted for not accepting the replacement of the Empire with the Commonwealth and being pitted in a life or death struggle with the Brussels bureaucrats trying to wipe their French arses on British culture, raise taxes, and usher in a dystopian future where everyone speaks Polish and the country is renamed Britistan.
British patriots have largely disappeared, to be replaced by "Nationalists" :(in alphabetical order):
- (Cornish) Who cares?
- English - would-be thugs who are too pissweak to join the BNP.
- (Catholic Northern) Irish - In fact, the only true British patriots are probably the Protestant inhabitants of Northern Ireland. Just don't blow us up?!
- Scottish - we make Scotch Whisky. And invented, and play, golf!
- Welsh - we talk funny, and don't use vowels. Our great-grandfathers were all coal miners. The flag has a mythical beast prominently displayed. When a Welshman says he is "going to take a leak", he might mean a leek.
Roman patriots don't understand why the British aren't proud of their roads and judicial system.
Chinese patriots loves their Tibet.
It can be argued that true patriotism means concentrating on the faults of your country in order to improve them. Someone who truly loves his or her country will not turn a blind eye to the actions of the national government. As was the case with the ironically-named Patriot Act, the word "patriot" can often be applied in contexts that are the antithesis of love and respect for national traditions: in a country ostensibly founded on revolution against tyranny, true patriot might well be someone who would speak up against the actions of the government. If one is a patriot of a democratic country, then that person will not condone his or her country doing such things as overthrowing other democratic nations, invading other countries on trumped-up charges, or ignoring problems such as global warming and world hunger.
A patriot is likely to define anyone who disagrees with him/her on any point of their definition of patriotism as a traitor who wants to sell the country to the highest (lowest?) bidder.
Patriotism is the ultimate appeal to national unity in times of crisis. It is the cuddly version of nationalism. Politicians in the USA have been adept at manipulating the electorates patriotic appeal to at times comic effect. Sadly, for all the miniature American flags waved at election rallies, the ability of politicians to say one thing to get elected and do another to climb the greasy political ladder is unabated.