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  1. #121  
    Quote Originally Posted by Tribalenvy
    My experience is quite limited, but every german I've ever met seems in the know concerning the geography of the US as well as the political climate. My brother married a german and lives out there now. He has reservations about our invasion of Iraq and how it was handled. He also appreciates the attitude towards Americans by Europeans (at least in his area.) His wife, her family, and their friends all demonstrated a superior knowledge of the US; quite impressive considering they had never been here. The could tell you the distance from Boulder to Denver for example. They know smaller cities in New Mexico than the residents here, not to mention that some Americans don't even realize New Mexico is a part of the United States. Please know that my brother did serve his country (SF), understands the good and bad sides of war first hand, and will die before long as a direct result. He loves the US as well.

    I am proud to live in the United States, and I do believe it's the best country in the world. I hope you would think yours is too. I am not so arrogant and naive to believe that the US goes around helping others selflessly, however. We have a reason and an interest, generally, for evey instance we've 'stepped' in. There are many global instances where Americans have not stepped in, and we all know it. Some have already been mentioned, but we (Americans) have yet to answer for why we did not take action then. What about Africa? What about the dictators who starve their citizens throughout the world, intercepting food shipments so their citizens die a horrible death? What was happening in Iraq was horrible, but was that the only place? Regardless of the fact that the Bush family has oil interests out there, something needed to happen, but why not get UN sanction? I believe it wouldn't have taken that much longer, but who knows? We didn't wait to go through all the channels. A believed perception of weapon existed, but what about the nuclear issue in the Korean Peninsula?

    When we invaded Iraq there began a division in US with its citizens. Those who expressed any concern about invasion were called unamerican. People put flags on their cars, houses, and told those who showed any dissent to love it or leave it (many in my area displayed their flags wrong, but oh well). What are we so afraid of? Aren't we founded on free speech? In my estimation it isn't unpatriotic to speak your mind -it is part of what we stand for.

    I am not for putting down other countries either. The US is made up of people from other countries after all. That is part of the beauty. I am ignorant to the ways and customs of others, so I wouldn't dare put them down. I have not walked a mile in their shoes.

    For the record I have not added much input to this discussion as I feel I do not know enough to -that is why I wanted to learn from the debate, not simply hear name calling, and the ever ignorant "love it or leave it" attitude which serves only to show what the debator does not know.

    Lastly, I have heard far more from the right than the left concerning the Patriot Act. At least the far right on radio. They are the ones who have shown the most concern from my perspective. Of course, we don't have too many (any) left based talk shows in my neck of the woods.

    My hope is that we can learn and be better people from discussions such as these. That is hard to accomplish when we don't even bother to listen or respond to another viewpoint.
    Nice post!
    I agree with most of it (not the bit with the US being the best countrie in the world Australia and Canada rank a lot higher on my list... Nevertheless the US has a lot going for it, unfortunately also a lot against it..)
    <IMG WIDTH="200" HEIGHT="50" SRC=http://www.visorcentral.com/images/visorcentral.gif> (ex)VisorCentral Discussion Moderator
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  2. #122  
    Quote Originally Posted by cash70
    I feel the same way and I have visited 30 countries (still counting) and have lived in 5. Is that surprising?



    1. Yep, I know.
    2. Yep, I know.
    3. Yep, I know.

    We can still add many more countries. I still have not changed my mind.

    There is nothing wrong with being proud about your country...or biased.

    I agree and that is why I travel and study about other cultures as much as possible. But will that make me change my mind? Nope.
    You sound like a co-worker of mine (you are not Bob are you??)
    It allways surprizes me if people see more things, but do not broaden their minds...
    Sure you can be proud of your country, but if it affects your judgement I think it is wrong thing... pride can be a good and a bad thing...and it can lead to prejudice very easy...
    <IMG WIDTH="200" HEIGHT="50" SRC=http://www.visorcentral.com/images/visorcentral.gif> (ex)VisorCentral Discussion Moderator
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  3. #123  
    Quote Originally Posted by Tribalenvy

    I am proud to live in the United States, and I do believe it's the best country in the world. I hope you would think yours is too.
    I've read all of your comments and I stick by my statement. Living where most all of us do we have the ability and luxury perhaps, to leave our respective country and live somewhere else. We can choose to take up citizenship elsewhere as well. I choose to live here. Yes, it is all I know, but I do know I have that choice. I don't have to be smuggled out of my country, nor take a life threatening boat trip to leave. I would say just about everyone here has that same choice, but not everyone in the world does. I personally feel it is good to take pride in one's country, and do what they can to make it better. Does that mean I think the US is perfect? Of course not, but I can voice that freely and try to make it a better place. Does that mean I am blinded by pride and cannot see things from your perspective? No, but I accept that we (ok, at least me) are limited by our experiences and viewpoints and develop biases based on them. Still we are all fortunate that we can get online and conduct open discussion, while learning about each other. I feel this far better than watching a static program showing me a side of a country the producer/director wishes to reveal.

    I would hope everyone here feels their country is the best, but that doesn't mean you have to blindly defend it, just work towards making it the best. I guess it's in part attitude for me. If I don't believe or think much of myself, I tend to treat myself accordingly. If I believe myself the best at something, I've set the bar higher, and again, I act accordingly.

    Please know I am not offended at all if you don't feel the same way. I respect and even appreciate others comments. Clulup I wouldn't be offended if you meant me as well. I know my perspective is limited, but I have the opportunity to learn and grow from others viewpoints here. Doesn't mean I'll up and move, but I can learn and try to make myself and indirectly, my country, better in the process.
  4. #124  
    Just to weigh in...

    I am proud of the country in which I live. I am proud of what it has accomplished, though cognizant of reality. For instance, the US did save Europe from Nazism. It didn't do it by itself (as mentioned elsewhere, Russia played a large, if not larger role) and accomplished it not by some magical powers or super-human effort. We had more natural resources, more people, and most importantly, a gigantic ocean between us and "them." My pride in my country is not pride in our borders, colors, flags or anything else...it is a pride in what people can accomplish. In that respect, I am proud of each and every country where people live in freedom with a government elected by the people, for the people.

    I am proud of the tremendous ability of this country to shape the future of this planet for the better, but I'm cognizant of our ability to destroy the world, through war, neglect, pollution or any number of things yet to come. Anyone who ignores this is being short-sighted. Equally short-sighted are those (both in this country and others) that believe the simple fact of the US's size and power is evil. It is not, if used correctly.

    At the most basic level, pride in your country should not be contempt for all the rest. Anyone who steps back and thinks about it for a second will see just how silly that is.

    The US rocks, but so do so many other countries across this world. No one has a monopoly on the title of "best country."
  5. #125  
    Quote Originally Posted by ToolkiT
    You sound like a co-worker of mine (you are not Bob are you??)
    It allways surprizes me if people see more things, but do not broaden their minds...
    Sure you can be proud of your country, but if it affects your judgement I think it is wrong thing... pride can be a good and a bad thing...and it can lead to prejudice very easy...
    Nope...not Bob here.

    Absolutely! I agree with you 100%. That is why I don't let it affect my judgement. I feel lucky that I was invited one year by a family (not western) in Baharain to celebrate Thanksgiving day. I lived in a town in Japan for 4 years where I was the only foreigner. India, Australia, Italy, Chile, Mexico...I can go on and on...I've also had people from other countries tell me that their country was the best because of "this reason" or "that reason". I think is great that people feel proud about their countries...they should.
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  6. #126  
    Quote Originally Posted by Various posters
    I am proud of the country in which I live...
    I do not feel too comfortable about this pride thing in general. I consider myself lucky to live in Switzerland, but do I feel proud? I think Switzerland is a great country (the best from an objective point of view as you can see in the rating ) and I do my best to criticize it, do something about it whenever needed in order to make it even better, defend it against wrong views, inside or outside attacks, etc. But is pride a good way of feeling about ones nation?

    I guess I would not call the feeling of being lucky to live here pride, because being proud for me has the connotation of feeling better than others, looking down to them:

    proud:
    feeling or showing pride: as a : having or displaying excessive self-esteem (.....)
    synonyms PROUD, ARROGANT, HAUGHTY, LORDLY, INSOLENT, OVERBEARING, SUPERCILIOUS, DISDAINFUL (www.webster.com).


    In addition: I did not create Switzerland as it is today, it was and is created as a collective effort, mostly by people who don't live any more. The same is true for the US - you didn't make it, so how can you be proud of it? In my view, one can only be proud of something one did, not about things others did for you...
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  7. #127  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    In my view, one can only be proud of something one did, not about things others did for you...
    According to M-W.com one definition of pride is: delight or elation arising from some act, possession, or relationship. (Emphasis added).
  8. #128  
    Quote Originally Posted by KRamsauer
    According to M-W.com one definition of pride is: delight or elation arising from some act, possession, or relationship. (Emphasis added).
    But even "relationship" is based on some sort of achievement or act, like being worthy of someones friendship, being accepted into this or that association because of what one is, etc. You are simply born into a nationality, it is no act or achievement...

    Imagine someone wins a car in a lottery and then you hear him say "I am so poud of my car..." Wouldn't you find that strange?
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  9. #129  
    I wouldn't find that strange in the least bit. As the definition says, there's no restriction on the relationship. Indeed, pride is really a person's feeling and is not affected by what others, including you, think.
  10. #130  
    If you are a tax-paying, voting, working citizen of a country then you contribute towards it don't you Clulup? And in any case, you can feel proud that your parents or grandparents or other family did something good, you can look at being a citizen as somewhat like being in a family. You are associated with that good thing, even if only by accident. In the same way you are associated with bad things your family or your country do. It's not a strong connection in either case, but it's a connection that is real in peoples perceptions of themselves and of others.
    Animo et Fide
  11. #131  
    For me it just seems a bit like taking credit for something I had nothing to do with. Similarly, I also would not want to feel guilt for something one of my ancestors did, if I had nothing to do with it. If, say, my uncle stole money and I now profit from that money, then I should give the money back or otherwise feel guilty. But if there is no link, what would it have to do with me? I can understand that people feel there is a connection, though I am not sure it is a valid one in all instances. Sure you can be proud if your ancestors were brave, but does it say anything about you? So what is the point in being proud/not proud about your ancestors?

    And what about the "looking down aspect" of pride?

    Don't get my wrong, I don't really mind if you are proud about your nation, I just said I don't feel entirely comfortable with me saying I was proud of things I didn't do.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  12. #132  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    Don't get my wrong, I don't really mind if you are proud about your nation, I just said I don't feel entirely comfortable with me saying I was proud of things I didn't do.
    Okay. That's fair.
  13. #133  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    For me it just seems a bit like taking credit for something I had nothing to do with. Similarly, I also would not want to feel guilt for something one of my ancestors did, if I had nothing to do with it. If, say, my uncle stole money and I now profit from that money, then I should give the money back or otherwise feel guilty. But if there is no link, what would it have to do with me? I can understand that people feel there is a connection, though I am not sure it is a valid one in all instances. Sure you can be proud if your ancestors were brave, but does it say anything about you? So what is the point in being proud/not proud about your ancestors?

    And what about the "looking down aspect" of pride?

    Don't get my wrong, I don't really mind if you are proud about your nation, I just said I don't feel entirely comfortable with me saying I was proud of things I didn't do.
    There's a story about two students who found themselves sharing a room at Cambridge University. One was very Upper Class, with estates in Scotland and elsewhere, the other was a fairly lower class Scot. They worked out that the land the Scot lived on belonged to the family of the upper class lad.
    "What gives you the right to own that land?" asked the Scot.
    "My family won it in battle in the 17th century" was the reply.
    "Alright then" said the Scot, putting up his fists, "I'll fight you for it."

    I'm proud that the British Empire left behind it reasonably well organised, stable countries. If you look at the countries which were in the Empire, with the current exception of Zimbabwe, they might still be third world but they're not badly run countries on the whole. There were also terrible things done in the name of the Empire. I think that to be proud of one part I have to be ashamed of the other. The Empire had nothing to do with me, or my family, but I don't see a problem in associating myself with it as part of my history as long as I don't revise history to leave out the bad bits.
    Animo et Fide
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