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.