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LostInParadise's avatar

Are you feeling more patriotic?

Asked by LostInParadise (18290 points ) January 21st, 2009

The last time I felt good about this country was when John Kennedy was elected. With the election of Obama, I can actually manage to say that I am proud to be American. The fact that we finally elected a black person is fortunate, but I don’t find myself as moved by this as others. I am more interested in Obama the person than in Obama the black person. I love hearing him talk about replacing military action with diplomacy and about our shared responsibility for improving things. We will see how well he lives up to the promise.

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57 Answers

BoyWonder's avatar

I’ll let you know when my life starts to change.

seVen's avatar

I think I could be proud to join the US military under this well grouned commander and chief.

jonsblond's avatar

It is nice to see so many people supporting our president. Even republicans. Would McCain have received such support from democrats? I think not.

I just hope that people remember that things will not change overnight. Obama will make mistakes too. We are all human.

GAMBIT's avatar

Yes America has lived up to Martin Luther King’s dream “ You should not judge a man by the color of his skin but by the content of his character.”

cookieman's avatar

“Our nation is at war, against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred.”

“Our economy is badly weakened, a consequence of greed and irresponsibility on the part of some, but also our collective failure to make hard choices and prepare the nation for a new age.”

“Our health care is too costly; our schools fail too many; and each day brings further evidence that the ways we use energy strengthen our adversaries and threaten our planet.”

“On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn out dogmas, that for far too long have strangled our politics.”

“In reaffirming the greatness of our nation, we understand that greatness is never a given. It must be earned.”

“We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together. We will restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology’s wonders to raise health care’s quality and lower its cost. We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories. And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age.”

“And so to all other peoples and governments who are watching today…: know that America is a friend of each nation and every man, woman, and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity, and that we are ready to lead once more.”

“We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus – and non-believers.”

”...we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.”

“What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility – a recognition, on the part of every American, that we have duties to ourselves, our nation, and the world…”

”...and why a man whose father less than sixty years ago might not have been served at a local restaurant can now stand before you to take a most sacred oath.”

The man just “gets it”. For the first time in a LONG time – I am proud to be an American.

SquirrelEStuff's avatar

No. I felt patriotic when I actually cared about all of what was being done BEFORE Obama got in.

I do hope it does lead to more patriotism, not nationalism.

cookieman's avatar

@jonsblond: Obama himself has said in several speeches and press conferences (and in writing on his defunct site change.gov) that this will be a difficult road and take years to fix. I think he is very realistic about this and tries to convey that every chance he gets.

Anyone who expects immediate change hasn’t done their homework.

dynamicduo's avatar

As a Canadian, no I don’t. I’m still stuck with an awful prime minister and our parliament session still hasn’t reconvened. And when it does they’ll shove a massive stimulus package down our throats and probably bail out the failing car companies, both things I don’t agree with.

Although I was excited when I heard them mention that they’d be visiting Canada sooner rather than later. I hope I can go see Obama myself!

jonsblond's avatar

@cprevite I’m still holding a grudge. I supported Hillary :)

I’m hopeful things will get better, it’s the people that act as if Obama can do no wrong that bug me.

cookieman's avatar

@jonsblond:I agree with that. Thinking he is the second-coming is as flawed as thinking that 4 more years of Bush-like policies would solve anything.

EmpressPixie's avatar

I’m feeling better about the nation and am definitely inspired to do more. So yes, I’m feeling more patriotic.

Harp's avatar

I was taken aback yesterday by the depth of my own feelings. I had been thrilled at the time of the election, certainly. But it wasn’t until the inauguration, and with it the realization that the direction of our country is now actually free to change, that I was able to see how cynical about the country I had become.

Looking more closely at those feelings, I saw that what had been lifted was the pall of seeing our leadership as cloistered and unresponsive, pursuing its private agenda in the public name. I (and the majority of Americans, it would seem) no longer saw our own reflection in our government. Our role was reduced to being good consumers and not questioning the things done in secret by our leaders.

I was amazed to see yesterday that a spark was still there in my heart to be rekindled. I find myself actually believing again in the goodness of this country, and the possibility that we might still be capable of working together toward great goals.

cookieman's avatar

@Harp: Well said. Lurve to you.

seekingwolf's avatar

I am still cynical about things unfortunately.

The inauguration didn’t do so much in the way of making me feel hopeful, but I know that when/if the country starts to change for the better (hopefully!) with Obama’s new policies, then I’ll feel better because I know that his promises are coming to life.

It’s one thing just to SAY you’ll make something happens. When he starts putting his money where his mouth is, I’ll be hopeful.

As for being patriotic? No, I’ve never been patriotic.
As far as I am concerned, England is the place for me with my family there, not America.

Judi's avatar

@jonsblond ; It’s not that we think he can do no wrong, it’s that we are very hopeful that he will make the right decisions and were hopeful that he won’t do anything catastrophically wrong. I don’t know if our society, economy, could take another big hit.

critter1982's avatar

I’ve always been patriotic, but to answer the question, no, I am not any more patriotic than I was 2 weeks ago. Most of Obama’s social stances I don’t agree with and his plan to improve the economy at least to date is an extension of the crap Bush pushed through the last 3 months which hasn’t worked and has only put our country in $1 Trillion worth of additional debt. Obama is offering change which sounds great, I would love change, but I don’t see the right change coming from his platform. I also fear that Obama will deplete our armed forces of their resources and attempt diplomacy with other nations that could careless about the US and would do anything they possibly could to kill an American. I am patriotic but like seekingwolf am very cynical of the next 4 years. I just hope and pray that the obvious hysteria that Obama has brought to so many people doesn’t bring empty promises. I hope for a better nation in the next 4 years, and we’ll just have to wait and see.

Foolaholic's avatar

After watching Obama’s speech, I do feel a bit more patriotic. I wasn’t a Bush supporter in any sense of the word, and I’ve had a hard time taking our government seriously in these last four years. Obama’s speech was enlightening for me because he commented on just how far the country has fallen, and admitting the problem is always the first step.

onesecondregrets's avatar

I completely hear you on wanting to see him as the person, not the black person. It’s amazing that we now have an African American president, but I think the media especially, depending what angle, focuses WAY too much on just the fact that he is black. What is also important is what he represents now as our president, what he wants to do, plans on doing, and does as president- Obama as the person is what I find so attractive.

Obama seems to have a logical, citizen-orientated, insightful approach to his presidency and knowing that someone like that is running our country and has been able to create such togetherness, support, involvement, and hope- that makes me Patriotic. Bush separated this country like a mofo’. Just havin’ a war to protect and defend our country doesn’t give reason to be patriotic, chukno’?

Foolaholic's avatar

@onesecondregrets Agreed. On the Daily Show last night, they had a sizable montage of clips where news anchors asked (to the letter) black political figures if they, “thought they would ever see this in their lifetime?” They then proceeded to advertise for T shirts that read ‘yes, I thought I would see this in my lifetime. Stop asking me when I’m going to die’.

tinyfaery's avatar

It makes sense that non-blacks want to see Obama as a person, not a black person. However, it’s a lot different if you are black. The generation that endured segregation and the push for civil rights probably view Obama much differently.

To answer the question, yes, I am more patriotic. I have always talked a lot of shit about this country. I still have fundamental issues with America, but those are more of a product of my world view than anything else. Now I say I have hope that this country can change to better suit my world view.

DrasticDreamer's avatar

Given the history of this country, it’s impossible to not notice that Obama isn’t an old, white guy. This simply would not have happened before, so I think acknowledging the fact that doors have finally opened isn’t a bad thing at all. It only becomes negative when you have people voting for him or supporting him simply because he isn’t a white guy, and not also because of everything he stands for. I think it’s amazing that someone who wasn’t white took office, but I also think it’s amazing because of who Obama is. Had he been Republican, I would not have voted for him, period.

To answer the actual question, though: No, this did not make me more patriotic. I have never been and never will be patriotic. I’ve always believed that patriotism, no matter in what country someone resides, is a negative thing. It generally leads to separation, ego and division of countries. That is not to say that some patriotic people aren’t capable of being proud of where they live and also being open to other cultures and ways of life… But typically, that’s not the case.

I just think that people should be proud of who they are, not where they live.

Bluefreedom's avatar

I’m feeling one hell of a lot more patriotic. I’m a military member and I finally have a commander-in-chief (and a president) that I can respect. And it only took 8 years to happen too.

tinyfaery's avatar

I agree drasticdreamer.

jonsblond's avatar

@Bluefreedom- Thank you for your service to this beautiful country of ours. Just curious, would you have the same respect for McCain if he were president? probably a silly question

Bluefreedom's avatar

@jonsblond. You’re very welcome. Your question isn’t silly at all, in my opinion. McCain served honorably in our nations military and I have the greatest respect for him for enduring the horrors that he did in a North Vietnamese prison camp in Hanoi for 6 years.

During his run for the presidency, I liked a lot of what he had to say and plans he had for the country if he became president. But, I’d also heard from many that he was just another ‘Bush Clone’ and he wasn’t right for America. I wanted to judge for myself and not have my views influenced by outside sources so I didn’t subscribe to those views.

To make a long story short, I would have had the same respect for McCain that I currently have for Obama if he became president instead. His performance over time would have been the determining factor if I could have continued to respect him or not and it will be a similar situation with Obama. It just seems to me like Obama is a huge breath of fresh air and I get good vibes from what I hope are going to be positive steps forward that will come from his presidency. Only time will tell right?

jonsblond's avatar

@Bluefreedom You get all the lurve I can give!

Bluefreedom's avatar

@jonsblond. Thank you, my friend. And you get some right back.

seVen's avatar

On the other hand , I don’t trust what they tell me on TV

majorrich's avatar

Patriotism doesn’t matter if the president is Black or White. It doesn’t depend on what promises the government gives you. It doesn’t distinguish between black or white. It is a love of Country and what we have here on the blood of other men and women who believed in Our Countries core ideals. People who say they weren’t proud to be an American between Kennedy and Obama can get the fuck out of America and move to Afghanistan for a dose of reality.

Two men died for you. One for your soul. One so you can say outlandish tripe on a board like this. Join the service and come back when you grow a clue. Oh, in case you are too ignorant to figure out who died. Jesus the Christ, and the American Soldier.

Judi's avatar

@majorrich, one of those “core ideals” is that if we are not happy with the way our country is going, we can speak out and change it. There is nothing wrong with being proud that the system worked and we got a President that better represents our values.
I am more appauled that you would have the nerve to envoke the name of Jesus in such a vile tirade. Do you really think you promoted the cause of salvation in any way with your foul mouthed insults?

majorrich's avatar

I stated a fact that He, yes Jesus, was crucified, Died, was buried and on the third day rose for the salvation of sin, Even for people like me, Who has actually killed people in the service of our country. I’m not proud of it, but it was a mission I was ordered to carry out and I did. If I hadn’t killed those men. I and my patrol would surely have. I cannot put into words the fear and horor I endured. I was injured and there is a part of me that will never heal, knowing those men had families too. Are you saying in your self righteous, never did nothing for my country and free speech is a right and not a privelege (SP?) I should have baked them cookies and invited them to an encounter group? It dont work that way sunshine.
Your ‘president’ probably wasn’t even born in our country. He has never had a job. He has never done a thing but live like a tick sucking his sustinance from the lifeblood of our Nation.
I invoke the F bomb for idiots who hate our nation for 40 years and enjoy the rights hard won my my brothers, many of whom didn’t come home to enjoy. Have the unmitigated gall to say they aren’t the least bit prout they live in a country that gives them the right to disagree. Gotta tell ya. Many of the places I had to go, They take people like that our and shoot them.
Hell, we landed men on the moon! Aren’t you proud of that? Or were you even born yet?

tinyfaery's avatar

Don’t do it @Judi.

Judi's avatar

I was born a long long time ago. I have noticed that throughout the short life of our Country, it has been in a constant state of change and evolving. It has never stayed the same from one generation to the next. To scream “I want my county back” is a statement that can be made just as easially by someone who wants a country that embrases empathy as someone who wants government out of their lives.
I realize you, as a soldier have seen horrors and have bled and watched men die for our country and I honor that.
I hope you remember that President Obama is YOUR President too and as a soldier he is your Comander.
If you can’t accept that, it’s time for you to get out. If YOU don’t like America, as it is, maybe you should seek citizenship elsewhere as you recomend to others who seek to form More Perfect Union. We are a fluid and ever changing nation by design. It is the essence of our greatness.
By the way, my first alegance is to my Lord and savior Jesus Christ. Because of that, I would never speak to those he desires to bring to him in a disrespectful manner. I have all the tolerance in the world for people who don’t claim to be Christians. I have no expectations of them whatsoever.
You on the other hand, who claim to know him, I hold to a much higher standard. People judge Jesus by your actions. You did not represent him honorably with your “F” bombs and hate speech.
By the way, McCain was born in Panama. It would have been harder to prove his legitimacy had he been elected.

tinyfaery's avatar

Ok. GA. @judi.

Judi's avatar

@tinyfaery, I didn’t see your coment until it was to late.

Harp's avatar

“But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. But then Peter said unto the Lord, That ain’t the way it works, sunshine.”

majorrich's avatar

Since retiring in 1993 President Obama is not my commander in Chief. I have my whole life struggled for what I enjoy today. I tilled the earth, I ate the flesh of animals I raised. I have lived in abject poverty in an era I still think you can’t imagine. I entered the service when I was called and was carried and protected by the prayers of a completely different nation than I see today. I have fought it two wars, neither was popular. I found Jesus and was baptized in the sea of Japan in 1965. I make a distinction between my faith in the hope of a heaven in spite of my past. And for my devotion to the United States of America. John McCain was born on American Soil albeit in a different country, to two citizen parents born in this country. It don’t get any clearer than that sister. He also made all original (thats paper) documents available for inspection. All we got was a photoshop hack job from your ‘president’
In respect for the office he holds, and if I still had the strength I would serve right or wrong, the orders of the office, not the man. I would go again to war in my sons place because he has more to live for.
You must be from the peoples republic of Kalifornia. All too easy to say such things there today.

tinyfaery's avatar

Yes. Since I’m from Cali I am not a citizen of this guy’s country. Yay!

majorrich's avatar

I was Born in Santa Maria. That don’t fly.

Judi's avatar

I am trying to make some since out of this.
To feel patriotic because we are proud of our President is somehow unpatriotic?

majorrich's avatar

To be patriotic is to be proud of your nation, and if necessary ready to protect it. I got that part handled, just be proud we send billions of tons of food and supplies all over the world and still get pilloried for it at the UN. We send and sponsor countless missionaries all over the world only to see them murdered. But we keep trying. THATS what we can be proud of.

DrasticDreamer's avatar

Missionaries shouldn’t be brainwashing people from other countries. That’s nothing to be proud of.

Judi's avatar

HEY!, I’m going on a medical mission to Guatemala in a little over a week. We are Christian but we are going to heal the sick! People in poor societies are no less intelligent than you. They can’t be “brain washed” just because missionaries show up. They have a mind of their own, and a choice to accept or reject the message.

DrasticDreamer's avatar

The fact that you go to provide medical assistance is admirable, but I don’t think Christianity should be a part of the trip. Tons of cultures customs have died out because missionaries have introduced Jesus.

I like variety in this world, that’s all I’m saying. I don’t want everyone to be like me.

majorrich's avatar

The Missionaries we send out are mostly engineers that help get fresh water, Sanitation and stuff like that. They also only go when asked and leave when asked.

How about food and supplies. Are they also EEEEEvill? Perhaps we should cut all aid to all countries and become isolationists like we did before WWII. Watch the people of contries like Somalia die in even bigger numbers. Yeah thats a Great idea. I can be proud of that.

DrasticDreamer's avatar

Like I said: Going to help is an admirable thing. I don’t think religion needs to be brought up at all to help, though. There’s no reason for it.

I said nothing about anything being evil. I just don’t think it’s right to go to help but also to preach about religion at the same time. Cut all aid? Why the hell would anyone want to do that? I sure wouldn’t.

majorrich's avatar

Then you are proud of the aid we are able to provide third world nations?

tinyfaery's avatar

If rescue and relief missions have no religious context, why are there so many Christian converts all over the world?

Harp's avatar

It’s fine to be proud of of what our country does to make the world better for everyone. It’s also proper to feel shame when the country acts in shameful ways. To praise the good while ignoring the bad is not “patriotic” anymore than boasting about the good stuff your child does while ignoring his bad behavior is “being a loving parent”.

A good many of us feel that along with the good, this country has done a lot to be ashamed of over the past several years. If we just hated this country and didn’t see ourselves as being a part of it, we wouldn’t feel shame; we’d just be pissed. We feel shame because this crap was done by us, in our name. If we’re happy about the new administration, it’s because there’s at least some hope that we’ll have less to be ashamed of and more to be proud of.

majorrich's avatar

So @LostInParadise “The last time I felt good about this country was when John Kennedy was elected. With the election of Obama, I can actually manage to say that I am proud to be American.”

Contends that America did nothing to be proud of in 45 years? Why doesn’t this person do something in FORTY FIVE YEARS about it to change that. Be a Scoutmaster. Volunteer for the Peace Corps. start a can drive. No, apparently @LostInParadise just sat on it’s (non-gender here) ass waiting for someone else to do something.

So. What are WE going to do that WE can be proud of? That is for each of us to self examine and make America Great! @Harp “this country has done a lot to be ashamed of over the past several years. If we just hated this country and didn’t see ourselves as being a part of it, we wouldn’t feel shame; we’d just be pissed. We feel shame because this crap was done by us” What do you do to make the world better? Pissing and moaning doesn’t accomplish squat. What precisely sis the country do on your behalf that was so heinous.
Get Repeatedly attacked?
Save a tribe from Genocide?
Restore schooling for women?
Train an indigenous police force?
make it possible for an outdoor market to open?
Have actual Pedestrian walking traffic? (not running from one building to another)
Improve and install desalinization plants so there is planty of fresh water?
Get killed by people who are not from the host country using camouflage and children as delivery systems?
Hmmmmm I’haven’t hit one yet. Well, I’ll leave it to you to figure what you can organize, or bake to make amends for whatever horrible atrocities were committed on your behalf.

Harp's avatar

@majorrich If you feel the need to frame your war experiences in a positive light, that’s your right. If I had been through what you’ve been through, I guess I’d do my best to believe it was worth it too, cause otherwise it’d be pretty damned depressing. And if it makes you feel better to imagine that all the rest of us ain’t doing squat to make the world better, well then just enjoy that feeling. Wasn’t it Jesus who said “let not your right hand know what your left hand is doing?” Doesn’t sound like an invitation to boast about the good one does, does it?

majorrich's avatar

There is a really naughty joke that goes with that one. I will refrain. heh heh heh.
I really wish I could understand the mind set though. I had to retire two years short of getting a retirement pension and had to go on disability, Indirectly due to my experience. At least I have pretty good insurance. I guess you kind of had to be there to see the good we were doing, Undil that incident with my buddy I was Really enjoying making a good impact on peoples lives. How could a mother let her husband do such a thing. I still see it all when I close my eyes.
BOY I feel WAY better tonight than I have all week. I am back on my meds so am less likely to get surly, and am going to try and go to bed here in a couple minutes. Have an MRI tomorrow to see how the cancer is spread. Got some deciding to do. Doc says I may get almost amiable when I go on the regimen he has proposed. Not sure how fun tha’s going to be. Kind of used to being crabby.

Harp's avatar

Best of luck to you.

critter1982's avatar

What is wrong with going to other countries on missionary trips and sharing the Bible? It’s not like missionaries go to these countries and say accept Jesus as your savior or I will not provide you with the things you need. Sounds a bit intolerant if you ask me.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@tinyfaery oh. i see now. thanks. sigh.

Ron_C's avatar

“Patriotism is the last bastion of scoundrels” I forgot who said that but we see this problem all the time. It ran rampant in the Bush administrations and now it’s showing its ugly head in the Obama administration.

I wish he would work for domestic programs putting Americans to work and stay out of the middle-eastern mash ups.

And no, I don’t feel patriotic and haven’t felt that way since before I went to Vietnam.

Yetanotheruser's avatar

We must not confuse patriotism (love for one’s country) with nationalism (love for one’s government).

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