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America: A Forbidden Love

“I love my country!” It’s the name of a Florida Georgia Line country song, and, double entendre aside, didn’t used to be a controversial or political statement. Does anyone else find it completely crazy that it’s gotten taboo to display any form of patriotism?

Quick test: you see a pickup truck with an American flag bumper sticker. Do you immediately think the driver is liberal or conservative? A few days later, you see a Prius with an American flag bumper sticker...wait, just kidding. Because I honestly can't remember ever seeing that.

Hopefully this will soon change! How about starting a new hashtag like #MakePatriotismCoolAgain?

Ever since Bush made malapropisms so famous they’re now called “Bushisms” (e.g. “They misunderestimated me!”), a new sentiment began stirring among Americans, particularly on the left. It was a feeling of being ashamed and disappointed in our country, embarrassed to be American. Fast forward to Donald Trump, who certainly didn’t make the situation any better. And now, anti-Americanism has spread like wildfire, particularly among students coming of age in this tumultuous political landscape.

So here’s an idea: let’s pretend the USA is a wayward family member. If the behavior of a sibling, parent, or child was truly disappointing, even abhorrent, would you turn your back on them, distance yourself and declare your hatred for them? Or would you pull your relative close in unconditional love, and try to help them make amends? Because if you won’t help them, who will? (Certainly no state or federally-funded institution...)

Apply that concept to loving our country. If we turn our back on her, even if we’re so angry and ashamed that we’d rather disown her, how will she ever change? But if we continue to love her, take pride in at least some aspects of her past and recognize her potential for greatness, we can reform her and build her up again. And that rebuilding will require teamwork. Which in turn requires lawmakers (and the rest of us) to change the unfortunate viewpoint that Republicans are inherently bad people. I wouldn’t want to have to work with an evil racist, would you? But someone who simply shares different ideological viewpoints, for the grand purpose of repairing our nation? Let’s dive in.

(For your entertainment, here's "I Love My Country". Warning: this song will probably get stuck in your head...sorry not sorry!)

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