Real Patriots Criticize the Government

American ideals more important than scare of the minute
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 4, 2008 6:50 PM CDT
Real Patriots Criticize the Government
U.S. flags are seen during a naturalization ceremony in Philadelphia, Wednesday, July 2, 2008.   (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

Patriotism is the word of the day, but what does it mean? For Cynthia Tucker of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, it means fighting for your country’s ideals. "I believe I'm lucky to be an American because our founding document embraces the revolutionary idea that any citizen should be able to criticize his government without fear of retaliation," she writes.

We have a First Amendment for a reason, she argues. “Perhaps mine is a peculiar view, but I believe patriotism encourages citizens to criticize their country when they believe it has gone astray,” Tucker writes, “when it betrays its principles by using torture against suspected enemies or when it eavesdrops on its citizens without a warrant.” (More patriotism stories.)

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