Just what does it indicate to be a patriot? – American Patriot Series Books
Specialists state it’s difficult to define
For many, 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 indicates “one who likes and supports his/her nation,” according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary. One professional informed CNN calling someone 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 Series Books.
It’s a word that’s expected to bring unification and happiness, however throughout history, it’s likewise divided and omitted people. American Patriot Series Books.
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In modern-day times, conspiracy theorists and extremists – including some members of the groups who took part in the Capitol riots on January 6 – have latched on to the word “patriot” as a way to explain people who are simply American and (generally) White. Those who are not patriotic protest the United States and whatever it stands for, making them the enemy. American Patriot Series Books.
” It’s a rhetorical video game with often life and death repercussions,” said Michael Edison Hayden, senior investigative press reporter and spokesman for the Southern Poverty 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 popular culture to show the heroes of America, who were by the way fighting versus people who they deemed weren’t American. An advanced search on IMDb discovers a minimum of 94 popular motion picture and TV show titles that belong to “patriot” or “patriotism.”.
So what makes “patriots” such a unifying, yet dissentious word at the same time? Here’s a look at the history of it and its context. American Patriot Series Books.
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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 suggests “of one’s father.” Patriot entered the English lexicon through the French word “patriote,” meaning “fellow countryman” or “compatriot,” according to Merriam-Webster.
There’s never ever been any arguments about patriot’s literal definition, but it’s context – generally political – is what has actually altered gradually, according to Kristen Syrett, associate professor of linguistics at Rutgers University/New Brunswick. American Patriot Series Books.
Throughout the 17th century, a patriot in Europe was someone who loved their nation and agreed with the recognized federal government and/or faith, Merriam Webster’s essay on the word states.
The word then changed in significance and undertone as infighting in Europe caused the formation of new countries, like America.
” This word had actually kind of switched from a supporter of established federal government to somebody who is against a recognized government,” said Peter Sokolowski, editor-at-large for Merriam-Webster. American Patriot Series Books.
During the American Transformation, patriot had a positive connotation in America, however an unfavorable one in England, Sokolowski stated. It’s because of this that the founding fathers are seen as the embodiment of patriotism.
” It type of made them spiritual figures,” Sokolowski stated.
The unabridged definition of patriot in Merriam-Webster’s dictionary likewise says it is someone who is a member of a resistance group. That definition has actually not been updated in a minimum of 30 years, Sokolowski stated. American Patriot Series Books.
In the Oxford English Dictionary, one of the earliest in the world, an entry of patriot was revised in 2005 to state:.
” An opponent of presumed intervention by federal government in the affairs of individuals, esp. with respect to gun and tax laws. Often in the names of right-wing libertarian political and militia groups.”.
A representative for Oxford’s Languages team told CNN in an email the definition became part of a routine series of updates in 2005.
” The meaning in question becomes part of wide range of nuanced uses of the word ‘patriot’ recorded in the (Oxford English Dictionary) and modifications were made based upon proof of how the word is used in day-to-day life,” the statement checked out.
The addition of conservative groups “traces the direction the language is going,” Sokolowski stated. American Patriot Series Books.
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Dislike groups utilize ‘patriot’ for propaganda
Patriot in nativist, nationalistic and dislike speech goes back to at least the mid-1800s to the Know Nothing Celebration, according to Sam Jackson, an assistant professor at the University at Albany who studies patriotism and violence in reactionary groups.
” That motion was arranged around understanding that external influences – like non-White Europeans and others – were a hazard to American values,” Jackson stated. “By the 1850s, we’re seeing language of patriotism and signs being utilized in political methods and to mark individuals as ‘one of us and among them.'”.
The “us vs. them” mindset of patriotism would continue into the new century and change into a concept 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 means and what it indicates to not be a patriot,” said Syrett, the Rutgers teacher. “This is a word that is truly conditioned by what our set of values is and what we believe we’re fighting for.”.
The worths of being a patriot for those who had nativist and nationalist ideologies meant that America came. Anybody against that specific set of values was seen as a danger, even if that hazard was the US federal government.
The “America first” conditions set the tone for the late 1980s and 90s when conspiracy theorists start forming what is known as the Patriot Movement, an anti-government movement with White supremacist leanings, according to the SPLC. This motion culminated in the Oklahoma City Bombing on April 19, 1995.
” The word patriot is frequently made use of by individuals that wish to benefit from this idea of a love for nation,” stated Hayden, the SPLC senior investigative press reporter. “There is absolutely nothing incorrect with wishing to do good for your country, but when that passion is corrupted … that is taking great intentions and corrupting them for the purpose of doing damage.”.
Some individuals who stormed the US Capitol on January 6 called themselves patriots. American Patriot Series Books.
Former President Donald Trump and his daughter Ivanka have actually likewise used the word when describing advocates.
Ivanka Trump dealt with the rioters as “American Patriots” in tweet from January 6 that she later deleted.
Trump likewise called the rioters “fantastic patriots” in a tweet on January 6. In July 2019, Trump protected participants 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 professor, “When you state someone is a patriot, you’re saying there’s some goodness in them. It verifies them.”. American Patriot Series Books.
Pop culture uses patriot to show America.
In popular 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 film “The Patriot” starring Mel Gibson. Others may consider United States soldiers defending flexibility, like those seen in 1998’s “Saving Private Ryan.”.
There are those motion pictures where the characters embody America going versus an adversarial force that represents a danger to American values, much like 1985’s “Rocky IV” or the “Captain America” story in the Marvel Movies of the 2010s. American Patriot Series Books.
Being a patriot is “a word that deals with identity,” Sokolowski, of Merriam-Webster, said.
” Identity is an immensely personal and political part of language,” he said. “When it comes to identity, you’re getting to something that touches people deeply.”.
Syrett stated these movies and television shows depicting patriotism are a reflection of the times and reveal there is an audience for such content.
” Pop culture not only encourages a change in word meaning but it likewise capitalizes on a belief that exists on the broader public,” she said.
There are also pop culture arguments around what makes up a patriot. American Patriot Series Books.
There are some, for example, who would call Colin Kaepernick a patriot. The previous NFL star sparked debate after he sat in demonstration throughout the nationwide anthem in 2016 for a pre-season game, stating he would not honor a song nor “show pride in a flag for a nation that oppresses black individuals and individuals of color.” Kaepernick’s protest belonged to a continuing nationwide dispute about law enforcement’s unequal treatment of Black individuals.
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Still, others think that in taking a knee, Kaepernick disrespected America.
In the same vein, Syrett and Sokolowski said there are some who would say the rioters at the US Capitol were patriots, while others may have seen them as terrorists. American Patriot Series Books.
Syrett said the disparity over who or what is a patriot is a battle of linguistics that has been combated given that the country’s starting – when it wasn’t even agreed upon on what it meant to be American.