Originally Posted by stephanie
Personally, I agree with this. I just don't think acknowledging that you prefer your country but it's natural for others to prefer their own, and that loving America doesn't mean insisting that it's objectively better in all respects or without fault.
I get the feeling that in the minds of many conservatives, this makes me insufficiently patriotic. Or at least according to their public rhetoric (which seems politically motivated).
It sounds like our definitions of healthy patriotism are similar. And there is no question that conservatives or rightwingers use patriotism as a bludgeon against liberals and lefties. It's unfair, I grant.
The difference seems to be with how that love of country is expressed. Many liberals have a cosmopolitan outlook and associate flags, parades and whatnot with a narrow-minded provincialism that strikes them as uncouth. They often seem to focus more on America's mistakes or shortcomings than to take pride in its achievements. Their love of country strikes conservatives as conditional or equivocal.
Righties, on the other hand, have a tendency to downplay or ignore entirely America's flaws and the wrongs it has done, and to deny that anyone anywhere could possibly do anything better than we do. Liberals roll their eyes at this, and justly so.
The truth is we benefit from both perspectives in my (naive) view and we should give those on the other side of the aisle the benefit of the doubt when it comes to patriotism.
Note to Wonderment: If I've been unfair, I apologize. I'd be happiest to hear you say that for all our flaws, Americans are doing their best and that tomorrow will be better than today. Here's hoping that's true, anyway.