Just what does it indicate to be a patriot? – American Patriot Magazine
Specialists state it’s difficult to specify
For numerous, being thought about a patriot is as American as it gets.
Of the millions of words in the English language, the word “patriot” has actually long instilled a sense of pride in Americans. By definition, it indicates “one who enjoys and supports his/her nation,” according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary. One expert told CNN calling somebody a “patriot” brings with it a higher level of pride and respect, putting a person on par with the creators of this nation who are seen as the initial patriots. American Patriot Magazine.
It’s a word that’s expected to bring marriage and happiness, however throughout history, it’s also divided and omitted individuals. American Patriot Magazine.
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In modern times, conspiracy theorists and extremists – including some members of the groups who took part in the Capitol riots on January 6 – have actually latched on to the word “patriot” as a method to describe individuals who are purely American and (normally) White. Those who are not patriotic are against the United States and whatever it means, making them the enemy. American Patriot Magazine.
” It’s a rhetorical video game with often life and death consequences,” stated Michael Edison Hayden, senior investigative press reporter and representative 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 battling against people who they deemed weren’t American. An innovative search on IMDb discovers a minimum of 94 popular film and television reveal titles that relate to “patriot” or “patriotism.”.
So what makes “patriots” such a unifying, yet divisive word at the same time? Here’s a take a look at the history of it and its context. American Patriot Magazine.
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Patriot is stemmed from a French word
Like most words, patriot does not have English origins.
It’s derived from the Greek word “patrios,” which indicates “of one’s daddy.” Patriot got in 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 – usually political – is what has altered gradually, according to Kristen Syrett, associate professor of linguistics at Rutgers University/New Brunswick. American Patriot Magazine.
During the 17th century, a patriot in Europe was somebody who loved their country and agreed with the recognized federal government and/or religious beliefs, Merriam Webster’s essay on the word states.
The word then altered in significance and undertone as infighting in Europe caused the development of brand-new countries, like America.
” This word had kind of switched from an advocate of established federal government to somebody who is against a recognized federal government,” said Peter Sokolowski, editor-at-large for Merriam-Webster. American Patriot Magazine.
During the American Transformation, patriot had a positive undertone in America, however a negative one in England, Sokolowski said. It’s because of this that the founding fathers are viewed as the embodiment of patriotism.
” It sort of made them spiritual figures,” Sokolowski said.
The unabridged definition of patriot in Merriam-Webster’s dictionary also states it is somebody who belongs to a resistance group. That definition has not been updated in at least thirty years, Sokolowski stated. American Patriot Magazine.
In the Oxford English Dictionary, among the earliest in the world, an entry of patriot was modified in 2005 to say:.
” A challenger of presumed intervention by federal government in the affairs of individuals, esp. with respect to gun and tax laws. Regularly in the names of conservative libertarian political and militia groups.”.
A representative for Oxford’s Languages team told CNN in an e-mail the definition became part of a regular series of updates in 2005.
” The definition in question belongs to wide variety of nuanced uses of the word ‘patriot’ taped in the (Oxford English Dictionary) and changes were made based on proof of how the word is utilized in everyday life,” the statement read.
The addition of right-wing groups “traces the instructions the language is going,” Sokolowski stated. American Patriot Magazine.
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Dislike groups utilize ‘patriot’ for propaganda
Patriot in nativist, nationalistic and dislike speech returns to a minimum of 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 arranged around perception that external influences – like non-White Europeans and others – were a hazard to American worths,” Jackson stated. “By the 1850s, we’re seeing language of patriotism and symbols being utilized in political methods and to mark people as ‘one of us and one of them.'”.
The “us vs. them” mindset of patriotism would continue into the new century and morph into an idea that patriotism is American and anything not American is bad.
” If I say someone is a real patriot, I have a clear idea of what that suggests and what it indicates to not be a patriot,” said Syrett, the Rutgers teacher. “This is a word that is actually conditioned by what our set of values is and what we believe we’re defending.”.
The worths of being a patriot for those who had nativist and nationalist ideologies implied that America came first and foremost. Anyone versus that specific set of values was seen as a threat, even if that threat was the US government.
The “America first” conditions set the tone for the late 1980s and 90s when conspiracy theorists start forming what is referred to as the Patriot Motion, an anti-government motion with White supremacist leanings, according to the SPLC. This motion culminated in the Oklahoma City Battle on April 19, 1995.
” The word patriot is regularly exploited by people that wish to benefit from this concept of a love for country,” said Hayden, the SPLC senior investigative press reporter. “There is nothing wrong with wanting to do great for your country, but when that enthusiasm is corrupted … that is taking great intentions and corrupting them for the purpose of doing damage.”.
Some people who stormed the United States Capitol on January 6 called themselves patriots. American Patriot Magazine.
Former President Donald Trump and his child Ivanka have likewise used the word when describing advocates.
Ivanka Trump attended to the rioters as “American Patriots” in tweet from January 6 that she later erased.
Trump likewise called the rioters “excellent patriots” in a tweet on January 6. In July 2019, Trump defended participants of his Greenville, North Carolina, rally – where members of the crowd shouted “send her back” about Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar – calling them “incredible patriots.”.
According to Jackson, the University at Albany professor, “When you say someone is a patriot, you’re stating there’s some goodness in them. It validates them.”. American Patriot Magazine.
Popular culture uses patriot to highlight America.
In pop culture, patriot can bring forth many images.
For some it could be the founding fathers or the generation around the American Transformation, like in the 2000 film “The Patriot” starring Mel Gibson. Others might think about US soldiers fighting for liberty, like those seen in 1998’s “Conserving Private Ryan.”.
Then there are those movies where the characters embody America breaking an adversarial force that represents a hazard to American worths, much like 1985’s “Rocky IV” or the “Captain America” storyline in the Marvel Movies of the 2010s. American Patriot Magazine.
Being a patriot is “a word that deals with identity,” Sokolowski, of Merriam-Webster, stated.
” Identity is an enormously individual and political part of language,” he stated. “When it concerns identity, you’re getting to something that touches people deeply.”.
Syrett stated these films and television shows portraying 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 also takes advantage of a sentiment that is there on the broader public,” she said.
There are also pop culture arguments around what constitutes a patriot. American Patriot Magazine.
There are some, for instance, 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, stating he would not honor a song nor “reveal pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black individuals and people of color.” Kaepernick’s demonstration became part of a continuing national debate about police’s unequal treatment of Black people.
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Still, others think that in taking a knee, Kaepernick disrespected America.
In the very same vein, Syrett and Sokolowski stated there are some who would say the rioters at the US Capitol were patriots, while others might have seen them as terrorists. American Patriot Magazine.
Syrett stated the discrepancy over who or what is a patriot is a battle of linguistics that has been fought since the nation’s starting – when it wasn’t even agreed upon on what it meant to be American.