Just what does it mean to be a patriot? – American Patriot Sticker
Experts state it’s not easy to define
For numerous, being considered 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 suggests “one who likes and supports his or her nation,” according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary. One specialist told CNN calling somebody a “patriot” brings with it a higher level of pride and regard, putting a person on par with the creators of this nation who are viewed as the original patriots. American Patriot Sticker.
It’s a word that’s expected to bring unification and joy, but throughout history, it’s also divided and excluded individuals. American Patriot Sticker.
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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 way to describe people who are simply American and (typically) White. Those who are not patriotic are against the United States and everything it means, making them the enemy. American Patriot Sticker.
” It’s a rhetorical game with sometimes life and death effects,” said Michael Edison Hayden, senior investigative press reporter and spokesperson for the Southern Hardship Law Center (SPLC), an Alabama-based non-profit that tracks hate groups and their activities.
At the same time, the word is still utilized in pop culture to show the heroes of America, who were incidentally fighting versus people who they considered weren’t American. An advanced search on IMDb finds at least 94 popular film and TV reveal 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 Sticker.
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Patriot is originated from a French word
Like the majority of words, patriot does not have English origins.
It’s stemmed from the Greek word “patrios,” which means “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, but it’s context – typically political – is what has changed gradually, according to Kristen Syrett, associate teacher of linguistics at Rutgers University/New Brunswick. American Patriot Sticker.
During the 17th century, a patriot in Europe was somebody who liked their country and agreed with the established federal government and/or faith, Merriam Webster’s essay on the word states.
The word then altered in meaning and undertone as infighting in Europe led to the formation of brand-new nations, like America.
” This word had actually kind of switched from a supporter of established government to somebody who is against a recognized government,” stated Peter Sokolowski, editor-at-large for Merriam-Webster. American Patriot Sticker.
Throughout the American Transformation, patriot had a favorable connotation in America, but 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 meaning of patriot in Merriam-Webster’s dictionary likewise says it is someone who is a member of a resistance group. That meaning has not been updated in at least thirty years, Sokolowski stated. American Patriot Sticker.
In the Oxford English Dictionary, among the earliest worldwide, an entry of patriot was revised in 2005 to say:.
” An opponent of presumed intervention by federal government in the affairs of individuals, esp. with respect to weapon and tax laws. Regularly in the names of conservative libertarian political and militia groups.”.
A spokesperson for Oxford’s Languages group told CNN in an email the definition was part of a routine series of updates in 2005.
” The definition in question belongs to vast array of nuanced uses of the word ‘patriot’ tape-recorded in the (Oxford English Dictionary) and changes were made based upon evidence of how the word is utilized in daily life,” the declaration checked out.
The addition of right-wing groups “traces the instructions the language is going,” Sokolowski said. American Patriot Sticker.
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Hate groups utilize ‘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 motion was arranged around perception that external influences – like non-White Europeans and others – were a danger to American values,” Jackson said. “By the 1850s, we’re seeing language of patriotism and symbols being utilized in political ways and to mark people as ‘one of us and one of them.'”.
The “us vs. them” attitude 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 say someone is a real patriot, I have a clear concept of what that suggests and what it implies 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 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 against that particular set of values was seen as a risk, even if that risk was the United States federal government.
The “America first” conditions set the tone for the late 1980s and 90s when conspiracy theorists start forming what is called the Patriot Motion, an anti-government motion with White supremacist leanings, according to the SPLC. This movement culminated in the Oklahoma City Bombing on April 19, 1995.
” The word patriot is frequently exploited by individuals that wish to make the most of this idea of a love for nation,” said Hayden, the SPLC senior investigative press reporter. “There is absolutely nothing incorrect with wanting to do good for your country, but when that enthusiasm is corrupted … that is taking good intents and corrupting them for the function of doing damage.”.
Some individuals who stormed the United States Capitol on January 6 called themselves patriots. American Patriot Sticker.
Former President Donald Trump and his child Ivanka have actually likewise utilized the word when describing supporters.
Ivanka Trump addressed the rioters as “American Patriots” in tweet from January 6 that she later on erased.
Trump also called the rioters “terrific patriots” in a tweet on January 6. In July 2019, Trump protected guests 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 teacher, “When you say someone is a patriot, you’re stating there’s some goodness in them. It confirms them.”. American Patriot Sticker.
Pop culture utilizes 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 movie “The Patriot” starring Mel Gibson. Others may think about United States soldiers fighting for freedom, like those seen in 1998’s “Saving Private Ryan.”.
There are those motion pictures where the characters embody America going against an adversarial force that represents a danger to American worths, much like 1985’s “Rocky IV” or the “Captain America” story in the Marvel Movies of the 2010s. American Patriot Sticker.
Being a patriot is “a word that resolves identity,” Sokolowski, of Merriam-Webster, stated.
” Identity is an immensely personal and political part of language,” he said. “When it pertains to identity, you’re getting to something that touches individuals deeply.”.
Syrett stated these motion pictures and television shows portraying patriotism are a reflection of the times and show there is an audience for such content.
” Popular culture not only motivates a modification in word meaning however it also profits from a sentiment that is there on the more comprehensive public,” she stated.
There are also pop culture differences around what constitutes a patriot. American Patriot Sticker.
There are some, for instance, who would call Colin Kaepernick a patriot. The previous NFL star sparked debate after he sat in demonstration throughout the national anthem in 2016 for a pre-season video game, stating he would not honor a tune nor “reveal pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black individuals and individuals of color.” Kaepernick’s protest was part of a continuing nationwide argument about law enforcement’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 said there are some who would say the rioters at the United States Capitol were patriots, while others may have seen them as terrorists. American Patriot Sticker.
Syrett stated the inconsistency over who or what is a patriot is a battle of linguistics that has actually been battled because the country’s starting – when it wasn’t even agreed upon on what it implied to be American.