What exactly does it mean to be a patriot? – American Patriot Contact Tracers
Experts state it’s hard to define
For numerous, being thought about a patriot is as American as it gets.
Of the countless words in the English language, the word “patriot” has actually long instilled a sense of pride in Americans. By definition, it indicates “one who likes and supports his or her country,” according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary. One expert told CNN calling someone a “patriot” brings with it a higher level of pride and regard, putting an individual on par with the founders of this country who are viewed as the initial patriots. American Patriot Contact Tracers.
It’s a word that’s supposed to bring marriage and joy, but throughout history, it’s also divided and left out individuals. American Patriot Contact Tracers.
American Patriot Contact Tracers
In modern times, conspiracy theorists and extremists – consisting of some members of the groups who participated in the Capitol riots on January 6 – have latched on to the word “patriot” as a way to describe individuals who are simply American and (generally) White. Those who are not patriotic protest the United States and everything it represents, making them the opponent. American Patriot Contact Tracers.
” It’s a rhetorical game with in some cases life and death consequences,” said Michael Edison Hayden, senior investigative reporter and spokesperson for the Southern Hardship Law Center (SPLC), an Alabama-based non-profit that tracks dislike groups and their activities.
At the same time, the word is still used in pop culture to show the heroes of America, who were incidentally combating versus people who they deemed weren’t American. A sophisticated search on IMDb finds a minimum of 94 popular motion picture and TV show titles that relate to “patriot” or “patriotism.”.
So what makes “patriots” such a unifying, yet dissentious word at the same time? Here’s a take a look at the history of it and its context. American Patriot Contact Tracers.
American Patriot Contact Tracers
Patriot is stemmed from a French word
Like the majority of words, patriot does not have English origins.
It’s stemmed from the Greek word “patrios,” which suggests “of one’s father.” Patriot went into the English lexicon through the French word “patriote,” meaning “fellow compatriot” or “compatriot,” according to Merriam-Webster.
There’s never ever been any arguments about patriot’s literal definition, however it’s context – generally political – is what has changed over time, according to Kristen Syrett, associate professor of linguistics at Rutgers University/New Brunswick. American Patriot Contact Tracers.
During the 17th century, a patriot in Europe was someone who liked their nation and agreed with the recognized federal government and/or faith, Merriam Webster’s essay on the word states.
The word then altered in significance and undertone as infighting in Europe caused the development of new countries, like America.
” This word had actually type of switched from a fan of recognized federal government to someone who is against an established government,” stated Peter Sokolowski, editor-at-large for Merriam-Webster. American Patriot Contact Tracers.
Throughout the American Revolution, patriot had a positive undertone in America, but a negative one in England, Sokolowski said. It’s because of this that the founding fathers are viewed as the embodiment of patriotism.
” It kind of made them religious figures,” Sokolowski stated.
The unabridged definition of patriot in Merriam-Webster’s dictionary also says it is someone who belongs to a resistance group. That definition has not been upgraded in a minimum of 30 years, Sokolowski stated. American Patriot Contact Tracers.
In the Oxford English Dictionary, among the earliest worldwide, an entry of patriot was modified in 2005 to state:.
” An opponent of assumed intervention by federal government in the affairs of individuals, esp. with respect to weapon and tax laws. Often in the names of right-wing libertarian political and militia groups.”.
A representative for Oxford’s Languages group told CNN in an e-mail the meaning was part of a routine series of updates in 2005.
” The definition in question becomes part of vast array of nuanced uses of the word ‘patriot’ recorded in the (Oxford English Dictionary) and changes were made based upon proof of how the word is used in day-to-day life,” the declaration read.
The addition of conservative groups “traces the direction the language is going,” Sokolowski stated. American Patriot Contact Tracers.
American Patriot Contact Tracers
Hate groups use ‘patriot’ for propaganda
Patriot in nativist, nationalistic and dislike speech returns to at least the mid-1800s to the Know Nothing Party, according to Sam Jackson, an assistant professor at the University at Albany who studies patriotism and violence in far-right groups.
” That movement was organized around perception that external impacts – like non-White Europeans and others – were a danger to American worths,” Jackson said. “By the 1850s, we’re seeing language of patriotism and symbols being used in political ways and to mark individuals as ‘among us and one of them.'”.
The “us vs. them” mindset of patriotism would continue into the new century and morph into a concept that patriotism is American and anything not American is bad.
” If I state somebody is a real patriot, I have a clear idea of what that implies and what it implies to not be a patriot,” stated Syrett, the Rutgers teacher. “This is a word that is truly conditioned by what our set of values is and what we think we’re fighting for.”.
The values of being a patriot for those who had nativist and nationalist ideologies meant that America came. Anyone versus that specific set of values was seen as a hazard, even if that threat was the United States federal government.
The “America initially” conditions set the tone for the late 1980s and 90s when conspiracy theorists begin forming what is known as the Patriot Motion, an anti-government motion with White supremacist leanings, according to the SPLC. This movement culminated in the Oklahoma City Battle on April 19, 1995.
” The word patriot is regularly exploited by people that want to take advantage of this concept of a love for nation,” stated Hayden, the SPLC senior investigative press reporter. “There is absolutely nothing incorrect with wishing to do great for your nation, but when that passion is corrupted … that is taking great intents and damaging them for the purpose of doing harm.”.
Some people who stormed the United States Capitol on January 6 called themselves patriots. American Patriot Contact Tracers.
Former President Donald Trump and his daughter Ivanka have actually also used the word when describing advocates.
Ivanka Trump addressed the rioters as “American Patriots” in tweet from January 6 that she later erased.
Trump likewise called the rioters “great patriots” in a tweet on January 6. In July 2019, Trump safeguarded guests of his Greenville, North Carolina, rally – where members of the crowd shouted “send her back” about Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar – calling them “unbelievable patriots.”.
According to Jackson, the University at Albany teacher, “When you say somebody is a patriot, you’re saying there’s some goodness in them. It confirms them.”. American Patriot Contact Tracers.
Pop culture uses patriot to show America.
In pop culture, patriot can bring forth lots of images.
For some it could be the founding fathers or the generation around the American Transformation, like in the 2000 movie “The Patriot” starring Mel Gibson. Others might think of US soldiers defending flexibility, like those seen in 1998’s “Conserving Private Ryan.”.
There are those films where the characters embody America going against an adversarial force that represents a risk to American worths, much like 1985’s “Rocky IV” or the “Captain America” storyline in the Marvel Movies of the 2010s. American Patriot Contact Tracers.
Being a patriot is “a word that deals with identity,” Sokolowski, of Merriam-Webster, said.
” Identity is an immensely individual and political part of language,” he stated. “When it concerns identity, you’re getting to something that touches people deeply.”.
Syrett said these motion pictures and TV shows depicting patriotism are a reflection of the times and show there is an audience for such material.
” Popular culture not only encourages a modification in word meaning but it likewise capitalizes on a belief that is there on the broader public,” she stated.
There are likewise pop culture disagreements around what makes up a patriot. American Patriot Contact Tracers.
There are some, for example, who would call Colin Kaepernick a patriot. The former NFL star triggered debate after he sat in demonstration during the nationwide anthem in 2016 for a pre-season video game, saying he would not honor a song nor “reveal pride in a flag for a nation that oppresses black people and people of color.” Kaepernick’s demonstration became part of a continuing national dispute about law enforcement’s unequal treatment of Black individuals.
American Patriot Contact Tracers
Still, others believe that in taking a knee, Kaepernick disrespected America.
In the exact same vein, Syrett and Sokolowski said there are some who would state the rioters at the US Capitol were patriots, while others may have seen them as terrorists. American Patriot Contact Tracers.
Syrett stated the disparity over who or what is a patriot is a fight of linguistics that has actually been fought given that the nation’s founding – when it wasn’t even agreed upon on what it implied to be American.