Sunday, July 3, 2016

Patriotism vs. Nationalism

Patriotism is love of my country because it is my country.  It is an aspect of piety, and considered a virtue.  It does not gloss over wrongs, but is sorry for them, seeks to learn from them and correct them, just as it rejoices over the good in my country, and seeks to emulate it.  Patriotism is to love my country not because it is objectively better than others, but because it is best for me, being my own. There is nothing wrong, indeed it is a virtue, to cherish and seek to preserve my country's culture, traditions, history, etc., because they make my country what it is.  

Nationalism (e.g., Americanism) thinks one's own country superior and others inferior, sometimes because of ideology, or because of racism or other forms of bigotry.  It overlooks one's own wrongs, and seeks to destroy the distinctiveness of others as a threat to one's own.  It can express itself in a fortress mentality, or in a desire for military, economic, political, or cultural conquest.

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