\ ˈpa-trē-ət \
1. a person who vigorously supports their country and is prepared to defend it against enemies or detractors.
“a true patriot”
The word patriot is completely misconstrued in today’s political climate. Some megalomaniac made his followers believe a patriot only serves one person. But patriotism is not about keeping the country the same as it was when your grandpappy was voting for Ronald Reagan. Patriotism is fighting for the rights of everyone, the future of everyone. The people who stormed statehouses, took part in the Jan. 6 insurrection, try to control women’s bodies, and want to suppress the rights of voters don’t understand that the country is indeed changing. Still, they all view themselves as patriots?
These are the people who want to carry a weapon to a protest to “protect” themselves but then turn around and destroy others’ lives. It’s baffling to me that they say, “I’ll never forget 9/11,” and yet showed up at the Capitol, tore down our flag and replaced it with a Trump banner. These same insurrectionists beat police officers while hunting for politicians they don’t agree with and smeared feces on the wall. Patriots? No, not even close. Their definition of the word has been twisted and perverted to fit a narrative that is both ignorant and abhorrent.
People who run amok when something in their lives doesn’t go right are not patriotic. Did we storm the Capitol when we lost in 2016? No, we complained and we cried, sure, but we never tried to overthrow the government.
True American patriots are progressive. If they weren’t, we might still be living under English rule. Had Washington not mandated that Continental troops get vaccinated in 1777, we would have lost the Revolutionary War because of smallpox. We wouldn’t have gone to space. We wouldn’t have medical miracles. Women wouldn’t be able to vote or hold a job that pays them anywhere near their worth (some are still not). People of color wouldn’t be able to vote or even dine or use public transit like other human beings. My LGBTQ friends wouldn’t have the same right to the pursuit of happiness that my straight-white-male-in-America ass has.
False patriots are dangerous and their mouthpieces even more so. For the sake of our children, we cannot afford to live in their regressive state. Most of our parents did that. They didn’t want anything to change and see how well that worked out.
That was just a long introduction to Patriots Believe, a website for like-minded people. When you purchase a Patriots Believe T-Shirt, not only do you help a small business, but the co-founders (disclosure: my friends) will donate to organizations that have proven track records of supporting social and racial justice. Kate and Rachel of Patriots Believe are proud to be their kind of “patriot.” Be proud to be your kind, someone on the right side of history.
Visit Patriots Believe and wear your beliefs on your shirt!
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