Considering America First

Sunday, March 5, 2017 – Considering America First

Here is your country. Cherish these natural wonders, cherish the natural resources, cherish the history and romance as a sacred heritage, for your children and your children’s children. Do not let selfish men or greedy interests skin your country of its beauty, its riches or its romance. ~ Theodore Roosevelt

Intellectually I know that America is no better than any other country; emotionally I know she is better than every other country. ~ Sinclair Lewis

Patriotism is when love of your own people comes first; nationalism, when hate for people other than your own comes first. ~ Charles de Gaulle

There is nothing wrong with America that cannot be cured with what is right in America. ~ Bill Clinton

America is a vast conspiracy to make you happy. ~ John Updike

When a whole nation is roaring Patriotism at the top of its voice, I am fain to explore the cleanness of its hands and the purity of its heart. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson, Journals, 1824

The notion that a radical is one who hates his country is naïve and usually idiotic. He is, more likely, one who likes his country more than the rest of us, and is thus more disturbed than the rest of us when he sees it debauched. He is not a bad citizen turning to crime; he is a good citizen driven to despair. ~ H. L. Mencken

The nation is divided, half patriots and half traitors, and no man can tell which from which. ~ Mark Twain

I have always been among those who believed that the greatest freedom of speech was the greatest safety, because if a man is a fool, the best thing to do is to encourage him to advertise the fact by speaking. ~ Woodrow Wilson

He is a poor patriot whose patriotism does not enable him to understand how all men everywhere feel about their altars and their hearthstones, their flag and their fatherland. ~ Harry Emerson Fosdick

The love of one’s country is a splendid thing. But why should love stop at the border? ~ Pablo Casals

To me, it seems a dreadful indignity to have a soul controlled by geography. ~ George Santayana

It is lamentable, that to be a good patriot one must become the enemy of the rest of mankind. ~ Voltaire, Philosophical Dictionary

My country is the world, and my religion to do good. ~ Thomas Paine, The Rights of Man

I would remind my countrymen that they are to be men first and Americans only at a late and convenient hour. ~ Henry David Thoreau, Slavery in Massachusetts

The proper means of increasing the love we bear our native country is to reside some time in a foreign one. ~ William Shenstone

“My country, right or wrong,” is a thing that no patriot would think of saying except in a desperate case. It is like saying, “My mother, drunk or sober.” ~ G. K. Chesterton

I should like to be able to love my country and still love justice. ~ Albert Camus

All wars are civil wars because all men are brothers. Each one owes infinitely more to the human race than to the particular country in which he was born. ~ François Fénelon

Liberty lies in the hearts of men and women; when it dies there, no constitution, no law, no court can save it. ~ Judge Learned Hand

A politician will do anything to keep his job – even become a patriot. ~ William Randolph Hearst

Americans always try to do the right thing after they’ve tried everything else. ~ Winston Churchill

Kill my boss? Do I dare live out the American dream? ~ Homer Simpson

Perhaps, after all, America never has been discovered. I myself would say that it had merely been detected. ~ Oscar Wilde

Patriotism ruins history. ~ Goethe

Patriotism is the virtue of the vicious. ~ Oscar Wilde

Patriotism is the willingness to kill and be killed for trivial reasons. ~ Bertrand Russell

Patriotism is as fierce as a fever, pitiless as the grave, blind as a stone, and irrational as a headless hen. ~ Ambrose Bierce

He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would fully suffice. This disgrace to civilization should be done away with at once. Heroism at command, senseless brutality, and all the loathsome nonsense that goes by the name of patriotism, how violently I hate all this, how despicable and ignoble war is; I would rather be torn to shreds than be part of so base an action! It is my conviction that killing under the cloak of war is nothing but an act of murder. ~ Albert Einstein

The time is fast approaching when to call a man a patriot will be the deepest insult you can offer him. Patriotism now means advocating plunder in the interest of the privileged classes of the particular State system into which we have happened to be born. ~ Leo Tolstoy

Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel. ~ Samuel Johnson

Patriotism is often an arbitrary veneration of real estate above principles. ~ George Jean Nathan

I love America more than any other country in this world, and, exactly for this reason, I insist on the right to criticize her perpetually. ~ James Baldwin

When I am abroad, I always make it a rule never to criticize or attack the government of my own country. I make up for lost time when I come home. ~ Winston Churchill

During times of war, hatred becomes quite respectable, even though it has to masquerade often under the guise of patriotism. ~ Howard Thurman

If you can’t get them to salute when they should salute and wear the clothes you tell them to wear, how are you going to get them to die for their country? ~ General George S. Patton

We are determined that before the sun sets on this terrible struggle, our flag will be recognized throughout the world as a symbol of freedom on the one hand and of overwhelming force on the other. ~ General George Marshall

A private man, however successful in his own dealing, if his country perish, is involved in her destruction; but if he be an unprosperous citizen of a prosperous city, he is much more likely to recover. Seeing, then, that States can bear the misfortunes of individuals, but individuals cannot bear the misfortunes of States, let us all stand by our country. ~ Thucydides

I do this real moron thing, and it’s called thinking. And apparently I’m not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions. ~ George Carlin

There is no flag large enough to cover the shame of killing innocent people. ~ Howard Zinn

You’ll never have a quiet world till you knock the patriotism out of the human race. ~ George Bernard Shaw, Heartbreak House

One question in my mind, which I hardly dare mention in public, is whether patriotism has, overall, been a force for good or evil in the world. Patriotism is rampant in war and there are some good things about it. Just as self-respect and pride bring out the best in an individual, pride in family, pride in teammates, pride in hometown bring out the best in groups of people. War brings out the kind of pride in country that encourages its citizens in the direction of excellence and it encourages them to be ready to die for it. At no time do people work so well together to achieve the same goal as they do in wartime. Maybe that’s enough to make patriotism eligible to be considered a virtue. If only I could get out of my mind the most patriotic people who ever lived, the Nazi Germans. ~ Andy Rooney, My War

I do not say that children at war do not die like men, if they have to die. To their everlasting honor and our everlasting shame, they do die like men, thus making possible the manly jubilation of patriotic holidays. But they are murdered children all the same. ~ Kurt Vonnegut, Cat’s Cradle

There has seldom if ever a shortage of eager young males prepared to kill and die to preserve the security, comfort and prejudices of their elders, and what you call heroism is just an expression of this simple fact; there is never a scarcity of idiots. ~ Iain Banks

For months in the fall of 2001, our highways looked like a county fair on wheels. “Look out, Al-Qaeda! Patriot on board!” I once saw a guy with five flags tell a guy with four flags to go back to Afghanistan. ~ Bill Maher

The great thing about being a government is you can wage nonsensical wars, and people will line up to give their lives in exchange for small paychecks and being called patriots. ~ Jarod Kintz

What is patriotism but the love of the food one ate as a child? ~ Lin Yutang