Exactly what does it mean to be a patriot? – American Patriot Title Llc
Experts state it’s hard to define
For many, being considered a patriot is as American as it gets.
Of the countless 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 specialist informed CNN calling someone a “patriot” brings with it a higher level of pride and regard, putting a person on par with the founders of this nation who are viewed as the original patriots. American Patriot Title Llc.
It’s a word that’s expected to bring marriage and pleasure, however throughout history, it’s also divided and left out individuals. American Patriot Title Llc.
American Patriot Title Llc
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 purely American and (typically) White. Those who are not patriotic are against the United States and everything it stands for, making them the enemy. American Patriot Title Llc.
” It’s a rhetorical game with in some cases 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 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 by the way battling versus individuals who they considered weren’t American. An advanced search on IMDb finds a minimum of 94 popular film and television show titles that relate to “patriot” or “patriotism.”.
So 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 Title Llc.
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Patriot is derived from a French word
Like most words, patriot does not have English origins.
It’s originated from the Greek word “patrios,” which indicates “of one’s dad.” Patriot went into the English lexicon through the French word “patriote,” suggesting “fellow countryman” or “compatriot,” according to Merriam-Webster.
There’s never been any arguments about patriot’s literal definition, but it’s context – normally political – is what has actually changed with time, according to Kristen Syrett, associate professor of linguistics at Rutgers University/New Brunswick. American Patriot Title Llc.
During the 17th century, a patriot in Europe was someone who loved their nation and agreed with the established government and/or religion, Merriam Webster’s essay on the word states.
The word then altered in meaning and connotation as infighting in Europe caused the development of brand-new countries, like America.
” This word had actually kind of switched from a fan of recognized government to somebody who protests a recognized federal government,” stated Peter Sokolowski, editor-at-large for Merriam-Webster. American Patriot Title Llc.
Throughout the American Transformation, patriot had a favorable undertone in America, but a negative one in England, Sokolowski stated. It’s because of this that the founding fathers are viewed as the epitome of patriotism.
” It kind of made them religious figures,” Sokolowski said.
The unabridged meaning of patriot in Merriam-Webster’s dictionary likewise says it is somebody who is a member of a resistance group. That meaning has not been updated in at least 30 years, Sokolowski stated. American Patriot Title Llc.
In the Oxford English Dictionary, one of the oldest in the world, an entry of patriot was modified in 2005 to state:.
” A challenger of assumed intervention by federal government in the affairs of people, esp. with respect to gun and tax laws. Frequently in the names of conservative libertarian political and militia groups.”.
A spokesperson for Oxford’s Languages team told CNN in an e-mail the meaning was part of a regular series of updates in 2005.
” The definition in question belongs to wide range of nuanced uses of the word ‘patriot’ taped in the (Oxford English Dictionary) and changes were made based upon evidence of how the word is used in everyday life,” the declaration checked out.
The addition of conservative groups “traces the direction the language is going,” Sokolowski said. American Patriot Title Llc.
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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 Celebration, according to Sam Jackson, an assistant professor at the University at Albany who studies patriotism and violence in reactionary groups.
” That motion was organized around perception that external influences – like non-White Europeans and others – were a danger to American values,” Jackson stated. “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 brand-new century and morph into a concept that patriotism is American and anything not American is bad.
” If I say somebody is a true patriot, I have a clear idea of what that suggests and what it suggests 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 defending.”.
The values of being a patriot for those who had nativist and nationalist ideologies suggested that America came first and foremost. Anyone versus that specific set of values was viewed as a risk, even if that danger was the US federal government.
The “America first” conditions set the tone for the late 1980s and 90s when conspiracy theorists begin 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 often made use of by people that wish to make the most of this concept of a love for country,” said Hayden, the SPLC senior investigative reporter. “There is absolutely nothing wrong with wishing to do helpful for your country, but when that passion is damaged … that is taking great objectives and corrupting them for the purpose of doing damage.”.
Some individuals who stormed the United States Capitol on January 6 called themselves patriots. American Patriot Title Llc.
Former President Donald Trump and his child Ivanka have also used the word when describing supporters.
Ivanka Trump addressed the rioters as “American Patriots” in tweet from January 6 that she later deleted.
Trump also called the rioters “great patriots” in a tweet on January 6. In July 2019, Trump protected participants of his Greenville, North Carolina, rally – where members of the crowd shouted “send her back” about Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar – calling them “extraordinary patriots.”.
According to Jackson, the University at Albany teacher, “When you state somebody is a patriot, you’re saying there’s some goodness in them. It validates them.”. American Patriot Title Llc.
Pop culture utilizes patriot to illustrate America.
In popular culture, patriot can produce lots of 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 might think about US soldiers fighting for freedom, like those seen in 1998’s “Saving Private Ryan.”.
Then there are those movies where the characters embody America going against an adversarial force that represents a danger to American worths, just like 1985’s “Rocky IV” or the “Captain America” storyline in the Marvel Movies of the 2010s. American Patriot Title Llc.
Being a patriot is “a word that addresses identity,” Sokolowski, of Merriam-Webster, said.
” Identity is a tremendously personal and political part of language,” he stated. “When it concerns identity, you’re getting to something that touches people deeply.”.
Syrett said these movies and television programs depicting patriotism are a reflection of the times and show there is an audience for such content.
” Popular culture not only encourages a change in word meaning but it also capitalizes on a sentiment that exists on the wider public,” she said.
But there are also popular culture arguments around what constitutes a patriot. American Patriot Title Llc.
There are some, for instance, who would call Colin Kaepernick a patriot. The former NFL star stimulated 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 people of color.” Kaepernick’s demonstration belonged to a continuing national dispute 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 stated there are some who would state the rioters at the United States Capitol were patriots, while others might have seen them as terrorists. American Patriot Title Llc.
Syrett said the inconsistency over who or what is a patriot is a battle of linguistics that has been battled since the country’s founding – when it wasn’t even agreed upon on what it suggested to be American.