The Star Spangled Banner

by rebel8 151 Replies latest jw friends

  • georgefoster
    That sounds like: I am proud to be white (or black) or proud to be a man (or woman). Just sounds very wrong.

    Not exactly. Being American is basically a choice, and if you participate in the process and like what the country represents, then you can be proud. Some are ashamed to be Americans.

  • DannyBloem

    Not exactly. Being American is basically a choice, and if you participate in the process and like what the country represents, then you can be proud. Some are ashamed to be Americans.

    Is it really a choice? Many people like to be americans but are not allowed to be an american.

    I know it is easy to critisize the politics of the country that has the most influence in the world. I mean if my country land does something stupid, who cares?

    I do just not like many of the forrign policies of the states. Also the first time I came to the states, (I arrived from a developing country) I was shoked by the poverty.

  • crazyblondeb

    I live 1\8 mile off Ft. Sill, OK--talk about patriotic!!! This weekend has been a trip!!!!!!!!!! Can't help but get swept up in it!!

  • kwintestal

    And the home of the Atlanta Braves! Play Ball!


  • rebel8

    People used to be forced to salute the flag in this country. Supposedly thanks to the JWs, all that changed. So instead of getting arrested when I was in school ('70s/'80s), I was made fun of. There is a lot of peer pressure on kids who are different in even the slightest way--very painful for a child who is already ostracized from celebrating holidays, and doing pretty much everything else a normal child does. It's just another demoralizing thing to endure each a.m. at school.

    My mother was one of those that insisted I sit down because it bothered her conscience to stand quietly. I stopped conforming to her wishes and just stood silently. Same thing with the playing of the National Anthem or standing during prayers at someone else's church. I see no reason why a person cannot refrain from being disruptive by purposely sitting down when it is customary to stand.

    I certainly don't think this country is perfect. I am thankful to live here as opposed to a 3rd world country or one that has no safety/security. I like my country. We have good medical care, education, technology, etc. That's all I feel when I think of patriotism--an appreciation that I'm better off than much of the world.

    Frankly, when I hear patriotic songs, the first thing I think of is being free from the borg. That's why I quoted it in my OP.

    I am really good at critical thinking and am not brainwashed by the press, government, etc. I guess if I were, then I could see the similarities to mind control.

  • greendawn

    There is a lot of freedom but there are invisible limits somewhere, if you try to pass them you will know.

  • Carol


    I enjoyed your beginning of this topic. I grew up in the generation wherein we read a verse from the Bible (King James), sang America The Beautiful (to the tune of God Save the Queen/King) and Saluted the Flag, every morning in school. I was allowed to participate in the Bible reading, and stood at attention during the singing and salute. I was called every name in the book, spat upon, pushed in the mud and hated recess (outside play) because I was ganged up on on the playground. Plus, I was a girl and "ladies" don't fight....!

    I am proud that I am an American, I'm sometimes not too proud of what some Americans do or say! I'm sure our friends from Canada, the United Kingdom, Belgium and every other country on this earth are proud to be citizens of their country or "Citizens of the World". I vote, because I don't feel you have a right to complain if you don't at least participate and I pay my taxes without looking for every loophole in the IRS guide.

    I travel and make it a point to at least be able to ask for the loo (ladies room, sorry I have alot of friends from England, Ireland and New Zealand), directions and say please and thank you in the language of the country I visit.

    I realize that Independance day (July 4th) is a holiday celebrated by the "Colonies", but as I sit here preparing to go down to the local Community College to watch the fireworks and eat tube steaks of mystery meat (hot dogs) I'll say hello to all of the Canadian, English, Cuban, etc., etc. visitors and immigrants that are always there. And, on the appropriate date, I will drink Champagne on Bastile day......and during my trip to England next spring, I'll lift a pint or two in honor of the appropriate English holiday at that time.

    The world may not like America, but it seems they always come running when they need something.......and we have Cubans and Mexicans dieing to come to our Country and I see a lot of Canadian "Maple Leaf" flags flying tall and proud over American soil every winter when the "snow-birds" come to Florida for the warmth and great exchange rates!

    I too feel that some of our friends north of the border and across the pond kinda like to pick on us just a little, but that's okay......I survived being in the "truth".

  • dorayakii

    You Americans are a very patriotic bunch aren't y'all?

    In American films and series, i always see images of flags hanging outside buildings, flags in the offices of police officers, flags outside peoples' houses and flags just EVERYWHERE. As a kid, i could never understand how on earth JWs had won so many "court victories" over mere flag-saluting and why it was always so prominent in the "schools" brochure until i noticed this State-side trend. This "flag-worship" was quite an alien concept to me until i moved to France and saw the abundance of Tricouleur flags (flying with equal status to the European Union flag) on government buildings, in offices, on schools and colleges etc. I also noted the high level of patriotism that the French in general have for their slogans, their anthem etc. I remember the first time i saw the front of the Parisian college in which i taught English. It had two large flags, a French flag and an EU flag, fluttering from two poles. As an exercise, i imagined that i was in England and i saw a "Union Jack" hoisted proudly like that in front of a state school... the mental image was just so... odd... so incongruous.

    I think most of us contemporary Britons, in general, feel that flags represent an over-the-top, unreasonable sort of patriotism for us, and we often frown upon those who seem to weild that symbol in an "in-your-face" manner. Most flag wielders i've noticed today in the United Kingdom are usually minority extremists who are (excuse the NWT expression) "puffed up with pride". The actual English flag (red cross on white) has had a lot of bad publicity over the years, being associated with football hooliganism and the minority extreme right neo-nazi movement. The flag is also often seen hanging outside windows during World Cup season. The combined Union flag, though, is rarely seen apart from at official royal occasions and sporadic tourist shops and stalls. Recently, the Scottish and Welsh flags have become increasingly flown, showing a rejuvenated pride and spirit of celebration of diversity in the UK...

    Patriotism in the UK, and in England especially, seems to occupy a less important part of our everyday life. St George's day usually passes with 99% of English people not even knowing its our National day, and very few people will acknowledge it with an inconspicuous red rose in their button hole, while St Patrick's day has become an international commercial holiday celebrated with fireworks and inordinate parades. British culture is very varied and mixed at the moment and most people are able to assimilate and contribute to the culture without having to label it and place their nationality on a pedestal. Many of us also shy away from the word "pride", as do many Europeans.

    Flag flying means different things for different cultures. It can do a great job of uniting a group of people to a single cause and a single identity, but it can also lead to an inflation of ego and a divisive feeling of US and THEM.

    Our Union flag is a solemn and shy creature. It is properly used in a context to show how grateful we are to be living in the relative freedom of Britain, a rich western country, while celebrating our diversity and uniqueness... but it is also appropriate and decent, while doing so, to acknowledge much of the bad that has been accomplished in its name...

    Thats just how i feel about our flag. How do you feel about yours?


    Happy belated 4th of July, people Hope you had a good one


    (and sorry if this post sounded like an Awake! article, i just... can't... help it... sometimes... *nnnrrrgghh*)

  • heathen

    woohoo , I got my fireworks off with no harassment and looks like everybody else in the neighborhood did as well cause I saw and heard alot of it ....LOL who needs the stinking law anyway ........

    You know I can see how people can get the impression that americans are A-Holes because I've known alot of them so it doesn't bother me because I call a spade a spade as well . I just happen to think that the democracy we have is, when applied correctly, the best form of governing but that it is seldom applied that way .The constitution of the united states of america is a fine document that speaks volumes that government should not become tyranny and cannot make laws without consent from the people .

  • Whiskeyjack


    You forgot about the first white bar on the flag man! Shame on you!


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