Debunking 5 ‘Patriotic’ Myths Republicans Actually Believe are True

To listen to most Republicans, you’d think they were the only people in the United States who were “patriots who loved this country.” If there’s one thing conservatives enjoy doing, it’s shoving their “patriotism” down everyone’s throat.

Though the truth is, they don’t own “patriotism.” The main difference between Republicans and everyone else when it comes to patriotism is that they don’t shut up about theirs. In many of their minds, they seem to think those who boast about “patriotism” the most are the only ones who can call themselves true patriots.

It’s as childish as it is silly.

However, as “patriotic” as many conservatives claim they are, several of the key pillars to their so-called patriotism are based on myths.

So, in the name of all the “fake outrage” concerning the National Anthem, and those who choose to kneel during NFL games while it’s playing to bring attention to racial injustice, I thought I’d debunk five of the main myths I see Republicans regurgitate about what they think is patriotism.

1. One nation under God: Millions of conservatives think the Pledge of Allegiance always contained the phrase “One nation under God” — except that’s not true. Not only was the pledge not even written until 1892 (which means it had nothing to do with our Founding Fathers or the birth of this nation), but it was written by a Christian socialist named Francis Bellamy and even he didn’t include the words “under God.” They weren’t added until 1954 in response to the threat of communism, which means the phrase “one nation under God” has practically nothing to do with being patriotic.

2. This is a Christian nation: Actually, no, it’s not. There’s not a single reference to Christianity in the Constitution. For anybody wondering why, John Adams (you know, an actual Founding Father) had this to say: “The government of the United States is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion.”

Seems pretty clear cut to me. If you still doubt the logic behind that conclusion, you might want to read The Federalist Papers and then get back to me.

3. Our national motto is “In God We Trust,” plus it’s on our money, so that proves this is a patriotic, Christian nation: Much like #1, this was something else done in the 1950’s, not the late 1700’s. This is a modern day fabrication of “patriotism” that has absolutely no roots to our Founding Fathers or the birth of this nation.

4. Republicans respect our military and our veterans: Really? Because last I checked, not only did the last Republican start two wars, one seemingly for political gain, but the current Republican “president” publicly mocked a legitimate war hero in Senator John McCain (and all POWs) when he said he “likes people who weren’t captured.” He also proceeded to pick a fight with Gold Star parents of an American hero who died fighting in Iraq. This goes along with the months he lied about money he had donated to veteran groups, only finally giving veterans the money after The Washington Post exposed the fact that he hadn’t. To top it all off, he banned transgender Americans from being able to serve and defend their country — something he never had the courage to do.

So, please, don’t even claim that your party respects the military and our veterans when you proudly support a draft dodger who’s mocked POWs; said a legitimate American hero wasn’t a hero because he was captured; attacked Gold Star parents; disrespected thousands of current members of our military and veterans when he banned transgender Americans from being allowed to serve in the military; and spent months lying about donating money to veterans until he was busted by the same media which he spends most of his time trying to vilify.

5. American flag t-shirts, bikinis, flip-flops, napkins, and other decor are patriotic: Actually, according to official U.S. flag code, those all classify as official desecrations of the flag. The code literally states that the flag should never be used as:

  • Apparel, bedding, or drapery.
  • A receptacle for receiving, holding, carrying, or delivering anything.
  • A costume or a uniform other than a flag patch.
  • Any form of advertising purposes.

So all these American flag items people walk on, wear, stick on their bumper or throw into the trash after eating from them — those are all major violations of official U.S. flag code.

While there are clearly more, I figured I’d wrap it up there.

Feel free to hit me up on Twitter or Facebook to share your comments.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.


Facebook comments

  • Dixie Sanders

    I am a Christian and an American patriot. I believe I need to know the truth about what religion and the United States of America have done in the past.

    I believe that Christians have a tendency to not want to acknowledge anything that might make someone doubt their Christian faith. Being a patriot, we have a tendency to not want people to hear about the bad things our country has done in the past.

    Republican politicians use Christianity and Patriotism to divide our country to gain votes for their own lust to gain power and money. Republicans do this without shame.
    But I think that it is crucial to understand religions and our country is made up of people and people make mistakes some which have had horrible consequences.

  • Eg Kbbs

    Don’t forget the recent meme that only repubs helped Houston as the people who own boats are the same people who own guns are the people who help their neighbors who are repubs.

    (Dems like to live in their gold gilded-towers…..uh strike that, forget any comparison to trump tower).

  • Jim Box

    lol number 5 is talking about an actual flag not the depiction of one. forget that debunk. Its too late here to address the rest. I look forward to doing so in the morning.

    • Tad_Kimball

      (i) The flag should never be used for advertising purposes in any manner whatsoever. It should not be embroidered on such articles as cushions or handkerchiefs and the like, printed or otherwise impressed on paper napkins or boxes or anything that is designed for temporary use and discard. Advertising signs should not be fastened to a staff or halyard from which the flag is flown.
      d) The flag should never be used as wearing apparel, bedding, or drapery. It should never be festooned, drawn back, nor up, in folds, but always allowed to fall free. Bunting of blue, white, and red, always arranged with the blue above, the white in the middle, and the red below, should be used for covering a speaker’s desk, draping the front of the platform, and for decoration in general.

    • Andy Greider

      Please see below as Tad already posted why what you’re saying is not correct. But also, if we’re talking about the actual flag, what about all those that fly 24-7, aren’t taken care of, are “flown parallel and flat above the ground (oh I don’t know, like before a football game or such), – those are all violations too, but many people are either hypoPatriots, or Patriocrites…as they have no idea on those, either, but want to be called Patriotic and think they are doing so. Final point. No perceived loyalty to any song, nor flag, nor other symbolic cloth should usurp the Constitutional rights we all enjoy. People may ‘feel” offended – but they aren’t having their rights trampled. That happens when they try to use their feelings to supercede the actual RIGHTS of others (and yes, I get the 1st Amendment is protection from prosecution for speaking out against the govt but until the CBA says “you have to stand” all owners and others can do is “request” or “suggest” they stand.

      • Pat Cannon

        (i) The flag should never be used for advertising purposes in any manner whatsoever. It should not be embroidered on such articles as cushions or handkerchiefs and the like, printed or otherwise impressed on paper napkins or boxes or anything that is designed for temporary use and discard. Advertising signs should not be fastened to a staff or halyard from which the flag is flown

    • DuctTapeN’WD40

      It’s difficult to debunk anything when you’re obviously uneducated about an issue. Here’s a link to provide you a tiny bit of education on the subject.

  • manoffire728

    I remember when I was in grade school, Abby Hoffman wore a flag shirt. It was a patriotic scandal. People (conservatives) screamed that he was a commy, (he was a yippie), and were outraged. Now this is what we get.

  • Gage

    1. While that is true about the Pledge of Allegiance, the Declaration of Independence (which is when we declared independence from Great Britain and became our own country) includes the words “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their CREATOR (meaning God). So yes, this country was indeed founded on religion with the idea that God gave us certain unalienable rights (life, liberty, etc.) whether “under God” was originally in the Pledge or not… And yes, I am fully aware, and fully agree, that one can be patriotic no matter what their religious affiliation is (since pride in your country and religious beliefs are two completely different things).

    2. See #1… And the fact that the U.S wasn’t founded specifically on Christianity doesn’t mean that it wasn’t founded on religion in general. The phrase “by their creator” seems to imply that the writers of the Declaration were in fact religious men of some sort and knew that a Creator had created them.

    3. See previous comments.

    4. Choosing to start (or supporting) a war doesn’t mean that you don’t have respect for military and veterans. That is a completely asinine statement to make. Yes, Trump mocking McCain in that specific instance was completely stupid and wrong. But where you get WAY “off” on is when you claim that Trump speaks for the whole Republican Party, and that Republicans (and conservatives in extension) can’t support both Trump and the troops. That’s completely asinine as well. Conservatives, for the most part, tend to focus on specifics, and can attack Trump for the stupid things he says and does, but yet support him for the smart things he says and does. (like I just did) Liberals, more often than not, tend to make sweeping generalizations about issues, and can rarely ever discuss specifics or find areas of agreement with the opposing viewpoint. (like you just did with this article).

    5. See this link…

    • Patrick T. Hendrick

      I suggest you read the discussion between Franklin and Jefferson concerning “their creator”. You are way off base on that this meant God or specific religion or religion at all. Jefferson wanted to use “divine providence”. Franklin pointed out that this was too much like a specific religious concept common in Christianity. They settled on “their creator” as a neutral concept to be what ever anyone individually considered who or what their creator was. You will notice their is possessive and individual.

    • Palmtree Hugger

      Creator does not imply God. You just see it that way. Creator can be anything including aliens. IMO God isn’t even a real thing. No more that Superman,Batman, Easter Bunny, or dear ole Santa. Man created God not the other way around. Your argument is invalid. Religion is a cult and a disease.

  • Richard W. Fitch

    I think it is important to point out that “In God We Trust” replaced “E Pluribus Unum”, “from many one”. This is an affirmation of unity in a diverse culture and this is exactly what many current conservatives are staunchly opposed to. The whole “white supremacy” mindset must go before America can truly be great again.