Dictionary.com defines patriotism as devoted love, support and defense of one’s country; national loyalty. I love my country by acknowledging all it’s done for me. I support it by paying taxes, voting (Someday… When I’m an “adult,” but that’s an entirely different article.) and exercising hard-won rights. I defend my country by supporting and promoting American ideals such as life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness but I do it without violence. I show loyalty by embracing America and looking for ways to improve her.
Some people think that patriotism and a love for your country is something you’re born with. I think you need to take a hard look and decide for yourself. You wouldn’t adore a teacher just because you had to take her class so why would you love a country just because you were born there? I consider myself patriotic, and I’ve stopped to ponder what loving my country really means to me. What does patriotism mean to you?
Kate Ahearn is a sophomore at Unatego Junior-Senior High School. ‘Teen Talk’ columns can be found at www.thedailystar.com/teentalk