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Is Nationalism as bad as we have been led to believe it is?

Asked by: Rhett_Butler
  • There is a strong difference between loving your country, and being a nationalist.

    Loving your country means being open to criticism, being watchful of public policy, contributing to society via taxes (if you can't afford it, society has an obligation to help you), etc.

    Being a nationalist means thinking your country is superior to others, thinking your country is #1, never questioning public policy, etc. This can lead to some very bad things. Very bad.

  • If Not Worse

    Nationalism leads one to hate those he has never met, take sides in conflicts he is not involved in, and become prideful of events he has never contributed to.

    Nationalism and patriotism -- taking pride in the country you happened to be born in -- is no less absurd, destructive, and regressive to humankind as racism, sexism, or any other blind belief.

  • Not rational-democratic at all. But great for fascism

    I'll keep it simple .Nationalism was created at the fall of religion at the western world. Religion in the past has been used to control a population. Why should we go and die for a war in far a way land that really won't impact us? Well, the king have the word of god.

    Now it's the same, only instead of god it is pride and fear. In my nation it is so clear!
    Why should we go and take part of a war and die? Well, because we need to protect our motherland against the evil of the world.
    There is rarely any really rational reason for nationalist claims and even those a most of the time are problems that don't need a nation to be solved.

  • Nationalism is certainly one of the worst things to befall humankind.

    As others have argued, nationalism is an absurd notion. Why would you feel any pride in someone else's achievements from the past? Why, in an increasingly globalised society, would you think one nationality of person is better than another? How, in a society where every developed country has similar laws and stand for similar things can one feel pride in one nation over another? Perhaps in undeveloped countries that are slowly making progress and have different principles to their neighbours' one may feel pride in one's country over another. But in the developed world? It's a crazy idea.

    But not only is it illogical, it is damaging to society. It was partly the cause of WW1 and almost entirely the cause of WW2. It is, along with religion and power, one of the three leading causes of war in the history of the world. It inevitably leads to prejudice and racism. Not good.

    Posted by: WFC
  • Nationalism and racism go hand in hand

    A belief in nationalism creates an image of "the citizen". Variations from that perception become unwelcome at best and hated at worst. So many examples of extreme ethnic cleansing or inequality have come from this view of the model citizen and what that person should be and what he should believe.

  • Nationalism is primitive.

    The nation you are born into does not have to define your values, preferences and culture in this age of technology where knowledge is easily accessible.There are some things good in every nation and somethings that don't make sense to us, it is up to the individual to choose what to put an importance to in one's life and what to focus on and being from some nations can put a hindrance to that whereas some nations don't.I respect that some nations have better values culturally than mine but it upsets me to see that there is discrimination.The only people who do not discriminate are the ones happy with their lives and have an inquisitive outlook rather than an arrogant one.

  • Nationalism is primitive.

    The nation you are born into does not have to define your values, preferences and culture in this age of technology where knowledge is easily accessible.There are some things good in every nation and somethings that don't make sense to us, it is up to the individual to choose what to put an importance to in one's life and what to focus on and being from some nations can put a hindrance to that whereas some nations don't.I respect that some nations have better values culturally than mine but it upsets me to see that there is discrimination.The only people who do not discriminate are the ones happy with their lives and have an inquisitive outlook rather than an arrogant one.

  • We must work together

    Nationalism leads to less international cooperation. Countries need to work together in order to promote humanity. If all resources were shared then there would be no badly underdeveloped countries. After all, we are all humans and members of the worldwide community, we have an obligation to cooperate and help others.

  • This is not about the hatred of others.

    Nationalism is thanking my ancestors for what they have done to keep me alive, to make my life and my way of life how it is now. It unifies us under a common cause, to protect each other. To deny the people the right to be nationalist, in itself is undemocratic. Millions before us died to make our life as comfortable as it is today.

  • No why is loving ones country bad?

    No, nationalism helps characterize a true American... American nationalism is not at all harmful but good, citizens should be proud of their country, origin, beliefs and mix of culture. There is nothing wrong with loving ones country, especially one that promotes freedom and equality. If anyone is lead to believe that nationalism for our republic is bad, they problably sshould not serve in our country due to their lack of Nationalism.

  • No, nationalism, if done right, is the most important value a nation can have.

    Nationalism is a great ideal, unifying the people, raising morale, and strengthening culture and civilization. It can lead to war (i.E. WW2), but today, we need this value more than ever. As an American, I believe that nationalism is the most important thing we don't have. Slowly, Americans are questioning our superiority and might as the superpower, and the American people are being divided. America has to be aggressively nationalist, if we are to survive among the rapidly advancing nations (China, India, etc.). Nationalism, or at least in America, needs to be seen as glorious, and should be used to promote our superior culture, civilization, and to unify the diverse populace as one people, under one flag and under one God.

  • Usually it isn't

    Those that identify as nationalists are more often than not people you want nothing to do with, it often comes with xenophobia and racism. But, being proud of one's country and its history in itself is not something to be ashamed of. Don't let the fringe minority speak for people that just like where they're from.

  • My Nation Is My Home

    Nationalism is basically me loving my country and people, working for it and fighting for it! I don't see how this is bad. Lets take a look at the "Bidoons" in Kuwait. These people are nationless or so they call them selves. Most of them burnt their identification and paperwork in the midst of the Gulf War. They are a mix of Syrians, Irani's, Jordanians and even Iraqi's (Mostly officers left behind). Think of them as illegal immigrants, in the States they would be denied residency, insurance (which they can't afford) and medical help. In Kuwait, they are given free education (Like Me A Kuwaiti) and Free Medical Care (Like Me A KUWAITI), Free Scholarships (Like Me A Kuwaiti). They run most of the Drug/Alcohol Businesses yet we get treated the same! Its MY COUNTRY! Why cant I have the upper hand for once. Yet they go out on rallies and riots demanding citizenship! They don't deserve it at all! On to another subject, Kuwait's Shrinking Land! Kuwait back in the good old days stretched from Southern Basra all the way into Dam am. That means most (if not all) of Saudis Oil wells are in fact Kuwait's! But no one talks about it! Over here people are over obsessed over the Palestinian/Israeli problems they forgot the ones we have here... Our own "Arab Neighbors" are eating away our land! All I'm saying is sometimes we are the only ones who can standup for ourselves and we cant do that if true love of the nation is planted deep in our hearts! We cant live all our lives depending on others (or the west for that matter). Thank You.

  • The alternative is Globalism

    Why should we all continue to forsake our personal interests in the name of intangible, theoretical benefits of globalism that the neocons and neolibs (really just 1 party, btw) tell us we should value above our own households and communities? People have voted against forced globalism, and wisely decided to try a president who plans to make our own front and backyards great again. We'd be fools to keep stifling healthy nationalism in favor of lining elite pockets with global cash.

  • All people of all countries have the right to feel pride in one's country.

    When people come to New York City, for example, to enjoy its multicultural experience, those cultures would not exist of they didn't feel some pride in the nation they come from. It's natural and healthy. It's what keeps a country resilient from being dominated. It keeps us from being apathetic

  • Globalism is an Ideal

    Nationalism has gotten a bad name because of the states' duty to protect their constituents. Aggression on the part of outsiders consolidates those who identify with a nation behind those affected because of the unifying spirit that nationalism imbues.

    It is seen as archaic, a thing of the past nowadays. As the world becomes an ever smaller place, globalism seems to be the path forward. However, I assert that globalism is merely an ideal. One doesn't need to look far to see friction and conflict between members of the same nation/society; imagine the differences in values, norms, laws, etc. that exist around the world. Globalism is the future, but it is a distant one and trying to push it will cause conflict.

    Opposing arguments assert that Nationalism breeds hate; in some cases it does. It has in the past. But the thing to note is that nationalism turns violent when people see their nation as superior to others, deserving of more than others, and believes themselves right in subjugating others. National pride is fine so long we recognize and respect the national feelings and culture of others.

  • No, but the media has portrayed it as such since ww2

    If I may direct to the Mirriam-Webster definition of nationalism: " a feeling that people have of being loyal to and proud of their country often with the belief that it is better and more important than other countries"

    The problem with nationalism arises when the later part of "nationalism" is realized: that "[their nation] is better and more important than other countries" comes to fruition.
    A certain amount of checked, restrained nationalism can lead to strong social bonds between those that share a country which is necessary for a country if it is to look after its own.
    This ideal nationalism does not necessitate a hatred of the outside, only a love for those within. Corrupted nationalism occurs most often when a nation is under stress from various outside forces (pre-Nazi Germany) and quickly leads to that zealous form of nationalism that has the ability to cause so much strife.

    As for the argument that it is silly to be proud of one's country because you did nothing to earn it is ridiculous. Should one not be proud of a garden they tend to just because it was passed down to them from their parents? Should no one feel pride for their family just because they did not choose it? So long as you work to make your country a better place then it is not at all a ridiculous notion for you to take pride in it.

  • Of course not.

    I don't see how loving your country is bad. Besides, even thinking that your country is #1 (which isn't what nationalism is) isn't anything but human instinct. I don't see what the big problem with nationalism is. In my opinion, nationalism is simply just human. If you are not nationalist, then fine. You don't like your country. You probably have a certain reason why but no reason to show your jealousy by hating people who have no reason to not love their country.


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Alexandir says2013-06-13T10:56:28.900
Think of it like this, one party rules all... (and i'm not for that)
Daktoria says2013-06-13T11:52:24.377
Nationalism =/= militarism. Pic is a lie.
Rhett_Butler says2013-06-14T18:57:57.890
The "pic is a lie" is there because that is what has been popularized in the media. It is intentional. Take for an example an article on gun control article; the main picture could be a man holding a gun to the camera in a threatening manner. This, for example, is the Imperial Japanese Army.

So it's not really a factor of "pic is a lie," but rather, how nationalism is currently perceived by our society. They don't allow you to "add details" in these things, you know.