UI – Part 94 – Patriotism
In Part 93 the question raised, “Why Separate Mosque and State?” leads to the idea of a united nation, a society governed by civil laws that are structured to protect the safety of everyone, designed for the common good, with unity of focus and devotion to national interests. If the fabric of society is as a quilt consisting of many colors, many patches, and parts of other cloths it has one purpose. That purpose is to protect, keep warm and cover a nation. The desire of all those under the same quilt is to be loyal to those that were instrumental in making this fabric function to envelop everyone, providing safety and security from outside invaders and evil forces within. To celebrate living in a welcoming environment designed to embrace all persuasions is Patriotism.
What is ‘patriotism?’ Wayne Grudem (Politics – According to the Bible) defines, or notes as ‘factors’ the following:
- A sense of belonging to a larger community of people….
- Gratitude for the benefits… protection of life, liberty, and property, the existence of laws to deter wrongdoing and encourage good….
- A shared sense of pride in the achievements …of fellow citizens….
- Pride for the good things a nation has done….
- A sense of security….that everyone in the nation will work for the good of the nation and defend each person from attacks by violent evildoers….
- A sense of obligation to serve the nation….
- An obligation to live by and transmit to newcomers and succeeding generations a shared sense of moral values and standards….
The opposite of patriotism, according to Grudem, “is an attitude of dislike or even scorn or hatred for one’s nation, accompanied by continual criticism of one’s country.”
What should prevail? If not Patriotism, then as erosion from a constant drip in an unsuspected location collapse of the underlying foundation can result? Those loyal to the nation will protect it and its members, they will fight in defense, they will proudly display its flag, and they will learn its history, speak the language, embrace, understand and respect its Constitution. Always seeking to ensure the common good of those who are citizens, those patriots will also be willing, and able, to be critical of their government when their practices or habits change in ways contrary to the ethical and moral standards of the society. Patriots love, support and defend their liberties, their nation.
For Americans we are to reflect on the Pledge of Allegiance. It is a commitment to a nation, joined by a love for this Country, a willingness to support and defend its borders and its people, and devotion so strong that we would die to protect our rights. We were not formed to create a population of entitled citizens, but to work hard to preserve our freedoms and enable opportunities for everyone. We were not formed to be constrained by government and self-interest groups to deny individual rights. We were not formed to be forced by third-parties to submit to demands that will constrain growth and free enterprise. We were formed to be united, to enjoy states rights, and to escape corruption and political dogma that stifles the rights of its people.
Recall Red Skelton and his commentary on the Pledge of Allegiance. (Note: Thank you JD for this) This is a valuable moment of reflection in understanding Patriotism.
Where can we find the moral and ethical standards people must live by? Where can we find the moral and ethical standards that all people can live by, regardless of their leanings, religious or otherwise, that will insure liberty, safety, security and protection from all forms of evil?
The answer is the Bible. It is not just for Christians.
Is the concept of patriotism lost on Muslim organizations in America? As an example C.A.I.R. (UI – Part 63 – Beware of C.A.I.R.). They are more for the micro-Umma of Islam than America. However all Americans need to be for America, a Nation united. C.A.I.R., even the ACLU, are not unifiers. Where can we find a leader that will disable those entities focused on separatism within our borders, who wish for ill for this country, yet want to live here and remain free. If they cannot Pledge themselves to this nation and a loyalty to what it represents, they should pack-up and go. Go where they find what they want.
We believe in God-given liberty, which according to Thomas S. Kidd (USA Today 3/21/2011, More freedom, less pragmatism), “is still the most compelling reason to defend freedom around the world.” This is what the world needs; but it must desire it and seek it, understand it, embrace it, and form a united bond to achieve it.
Be Patriotic, and if not in the Country where you now live, find one where you can so love what is the policy and civil laws of the land that you are willing to adopt their culture, their ways, their language, and their law. Do not take advantage of a people whose arms are open to others by abusing their kindness with litigious actions, with verbal attacks, with political correctness run amok, or with claims of persecution for questioning actions or writings of ideologues. Be objective, loving, and show the gentleness, patience, joy, and self-control that you as a godlike person would.
We pray for people to love their countries and if they cannot, and are free to leave, then do so. If oppressed and not able to leave, then our prayers are even more important and necessary to call for freedom and hope that they can find an escape and be welcomed into the light of a loving, joyful, opportunistic and an environment where freedom of speech and expression is a given.
Grace and Peace