Just what does it mean to be a patriot? – American Patriot Party 2021
Specialists say it’s hard to specify
For numerous, being considered a patriot is as American as it gets.
Of the millions of words in the English language, the word “patriot” has long instilled a sense of pride in Americans. By definition, it implies “one who enjoys and supports his/her nation,” according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary. One specialist told CNN calling someone a “patriot” brings with it a higher level of pride and regard, putting a person on par with the creators of this country who are viewed as the original patriots. American Patriot Party 2021.
It’s a word that’s supposed to bring marriage and pleasure, but throughout history, it’s likewise divided and omitted people. American Patriot Party 2021.
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In modern times, conspiracy theorists and extremists – including some members of the groups who participated in the Capitol riots on January 6 – have actually latched on to the word “patriot” as a way to describe people who are purely American and (usually) White. Those who are not patriotic protest the US and everything it represents, making them the opponent. American Patriot Party 2021.
” It’s a rhetorical game with sometimes life and death repercussions,” said Michael Edison Hayden, senior investigative press 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 utilized in pop culture to illustrate the heroes of America, who were by the way battling versus people who they deemed weren’t American. A sophisticated search on IMDb discovers a minimum of 94 popular movie and TV show titles that relate to “patriot” or “patriotism.”.
What makes “patriots” such a unifying, yet divisive word at the same time? Here’s a look at the history of it and its context. American Patriot Party 2021.
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Patriot is derived from a French word
Like many words, patriot does not have English origins.
It’s originated from the Greek word “patrios,” which suggests “of one’s father.” Patriot entered the English lexicon through the French word “patriote,” indicating “fellow compatriot” or “compatriot,” according to Merriam-Webster.
There’s never been any arguments about patriot’s actual meaning, however it’s context – typically political – is what has actually altered in time, according to Kristen Syrett, associate teacher of linguistics at Rutgers University/New Brunswick. American Patriot Party 2021.
Throughout the 17th century, a patriot in Europe was someone who enjoyed their nation and agreed with the recognized federal government and/or religious beliefs, Merriam Webster’s essay on the word states.
The word then changed in significance and connotation as infighting in Europe caused the formation of new nations, like America.
” This word had kind of switched from a fan of established federal government to someone who is against a recognized government,” stated Peter Sokolowski, editor-at-large for Merriam-Webster. American Patriot Party 2021.
Throughout the American Revolution, patriot had a favorable undertone in America, however an unfavorable one in England, Sokolowski stated. It’s because of this that the founding fathers are seen as the epitome of patriotism.
” It type of made them spiritual figures,” Sokolowski said.
The unabridged meaning of patriot in Merriam-Webster’s dictionary also states it is someone who belongs to a resistance group. That definition has not been updated in at least thirty years, Sokolowski stated. American Patriot Party 2021.
In the Oxford English Dictionary, among the oldest in the world, an entry of patriot was modified in 2005 to state:.
” An opponent of presumed intervention by federal government in the affairs of people, esp. with respect to gun and tax laws. Often in the names of right-wing libertarian political and militia groups.”.
A spokesperson for Oxford’s Languages group told CNN in an e-mail the meaning became part of a regular series of updates in 2005.
” The definition in question is part of large range of nuanced uses of the word ‘patriot’ recorded in the (Oxford English Dictionary) and changes were made based on proof of how the word is used in everyday life,” the statement checked out.
The addition of right-wing groups “traces the direction the language is going,” Sokolowski stated. American Patriot Party 2021.
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Dislike groups utilize ‘patriot’ for propaganda
Patriot in nativist, nationalistic and hate speech returns to a minimum of the mid-1800s to the Know Nothing Party, according to Sam Jackson, an assistant teacher at the University at Albany who studies patriotism and violence in far-right groups.
” That motion was organized around understanding that external impacts – like non-White Europeans and others – were a threat 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 ‘one of us and among them.'”.
The “us vs. them” mindset of patriotism would continue into the brand-new century and change into a concept that patriotism is American and anything not American is bad.
” If I state somebody is a true patriot, I have a clear idea of what that indicates and what it means to not be a patriot,” said Syrett, the Rutgers professor. “This is a word that is really conditioned by what our set of values is and what we think we’re defending.”.
The worths of being a patriot for those who had nativist and nationalist ideologies meant that America preceded and foremost. Anyone against that specific set of values was seen as a risk, even if that risk was the US government.
The “America initially” conditions set the tone for the late 1980s and 90s when conspiracy theorists start forming what is referred to as the Patriot Movement, 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 want to take advantage of this idea of a love for nation,” stated Hayden, the SPLC senior investigative reporter. “There is nothing wrong with wishing to do great for your nation, but when that enthusiasm is corrupted … that is taking great objectives and damaging them for the purpose of doing damage.”.
Some individuals who stormed the US Capitol on January 6 called themselves patriots. American Patriot Party 2021.
Former President Donald Trump and his child Ivanka have actually also used the word when referring to fans.
Ivanka Trump addressed 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 guests of his Greenville, North Carolina, rally – where members of the crowd chanted “send her back” about Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar – calling them “amazing patriots.”.
According to Jackson, the University at Albany teacher, “When you say someone is a patriot, you’re stating there’s some goodness in them. It confirms them.”. American Patriot Party 2021.
Pop culture uses patriot to show America.
In pop culture, patriot can come up with many images.
For some it could be the founding fathers or the generation around the American Revolution, like in the 2000 film “The Patriot” starring Mel Gibson. Others may consider US soldiers fighting for liberty, like those seen in 1998’s “Saving Private Ryan.”.
There are those movies where the characters embody America going against an adversarial force that represents a threat to American worths, much like 1985’s “Rocky IV” or the “Captain America” storyline in the Marvel Movies of the 2010s. American Patriot Party 2021.
Being a patriot is “a word that resolves identity,” Sokolowski, of Merriam-Webster, said.
” Identity is an immensely personal and political part of language,” he said. “When it pertains to identity, you’re getting to something that touches people deeply.”.
Syrett said these movies and TV programs depicting patriotism are a reflection of the times and show there is an audience for such material.
” Popular culture not only motivates a change in word meaning however it likewise profits from a belief that is there on the more comprehensive public,” she said.
There are also pop culture disagreements around what makes up a patriot. American Patriot Party 2021.
There are some, for instance, who would call Colin Kaepernick a patriot. The previous NFL star sparked debate after he beinged in protest throughout the national anthem in 2016 for a pre-season video game, saying 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 was part of a continuing national dispute about police’s unequal treatment of Black individuals.
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Still, others believe that in taking a knee, Kaepernick disrespected America.
In the exact same vein, Syrett and Sokolowski stated there are some who would state the rioters at the US Capitol were patriots, while others may have seen them as terrorists. American Patriot Party 2021.
Syrett said the inconsistency over who or what is a patriot is a fight of linguistics that has actually been fought since the country’s starting – when it wasn’t even agreed upon on what it implied to be American.