Patriotism 2 Essay, Research Paper
I believe that patriotism is a belief or feeling of pride in one’s own country. That is what I believed the definition of patriotism to be before I researched anything on the topic. People can argue all day long about the subject of patriotism, since it can sometimes be such a vague subject and they probably do not quite know what the definition of patriotism to be.
When I first started to research patriotism I figured no better place to look up a definition then in the Webster Dictionary. I did not get much help from the dictionary since it did not have a definition for patriotism but it was listed under patriot. The definition of a patriot is a person who loves his or her country. So I got the understanding of what a patriot is, so is the love that they feel for thier country, is that considered patriotism. I then headed to the library in search of books about patriotism. My search turned up a book by Leonard W. Doob called Patriotism and Nationalism. According to Doob the definition of patriotism is as follows: “The more or less conscious conviction of a person that his own welfare and that of the significant groups to which he belongs are dependent upon the preservation or expansion or both of the power and culture of his society.” To more or less sum up what Doob said is that a feeling of patriotism is that you would give everything up for your country. This made me think of Japanese kamikaze pilots who made suicide runs against American carriers in World War II. I thought that those pilots gave up everything for thier country and how it was a good example of patriotism. But I still needed to know more.
So know I had three definitions of patriotism, but I still wanted to read more into it. I grabbed another book by John J. Pullen titled Patriotism in America. This book defined patriotism that it is a love of country and readiness to act in its best interests as indicated by conscience and judgment. One story was told of a man who tried to enlist but was denied. I was very upset that he couldn’t go and help out his country in the time of war. He was denied because he had already lost his arm in a World War II battle. There is another story of a man riding a sight seeing bus through an area in the South containing several Civil War battlefields. He had become aware that the driver-commentator was describing Union defeats that he knew were Union victories. After the driver described another battlefield as the scene of a particularly disastrous Federal loss the man spoke up and said that the Yankees had actually won that one. The bus driver growled back, “No, sir, not while I’m driving this bus!” It was many years after the Civil War and this man still had a great feeling of patriotism for his beloved South.
So after researching the topic of patriotism, I still believe that my first definition of patriotism is correct. That it is a belief or feeling of pride in one’s own country. But I would like to add to it and say that not only is it a belief or feeling but it is also a showing. This made me wonder how many people in this country are willing to show their true colors. Are they willing to forfeit all that they have for their country including thier lives? As you finish reading this paper ask yourself how patriotic are you and would you be able to give the ultimate sacrifice for you country?