What's Love Got To Do With It?

As we celebrate Independence Day in these here United States I thought I’d touch on a subject that I pondered recently – love for country. You hear it all the time these days, “Do you love your country?” Especially in light of Michelle Obama’s comments about being proud of America for what has transpired during this election cycle. So it got me to thinking. What is it that reporters and those in power really asking when they say “Do you love your country?” It couldn’t be a question about location. I mean, I live in St. Louis, but I’d much rather live in Chicago or even Atlanta again. I think that is understood when the question is presented that most folks may desire another locale, but that overall the life we get to live in America is cool. Notwithstanding there are some crooked policies I’d like to see done away with, but for the most part it’s all good. So again, what is the real meaning behind the question as it relates to love of country? Why do politicians go on TV trying to defend and/or convince the masses that they love their country? As I thought about this more and more, my southern upbringing kicked in. I then wondered if what was really meant was how much does a person love this white male dominated society we experience in America. The question then becomes, "Are you down with the American Way?" When I look at the question through those lenses I see justification for “love” being called into question. Especially for political figures. Those in power want to be assured that you are going to fall into line with the way business is handled in these here United States of America. I may be wrong in my assessment, but I just don’t see people always making a big deal about a person’s preference of locale. I've been to other countries and it's a great expereince but being home is altogether different. So what say you? What do you think is meant by this popular line of questioning? Why is it such a big deal?

About the host:
Rich Fitzgerald is the author of the short story "One to Remember" featured in Love and Redemption (Bloggers' Delight Vol. 1), a collection of short stories by authors who blog. To read excerpts or to order a copy of the title, visit i-Lit. The book is also available on Amazon.


B-More BAP said...

I agree with you. I think the line of questioning pertains to society's assumption that we should adhere to socialized thought. The moment someone steps outside of that they are deemed "Anti-American".

sista gp said...

I cannot postulate what reporters seek in asking the question. I would be unable to answer it as a "Yes" or "No". For me, "love" has to do with a relationship of give and take as in my love of God, the love for my husband, my child, family, friends, and people in general. All my relationships are based on love, but all are different.
To have a love of country would be based on a relationship with country. I will try to evaluate this relationship. I work. I pay taxes. I vote. I own property (well the bank does). I come and go as I please. But all of these things I do are restricted by the laws of the country.
When I try to think what has country contributed to this relationship, I draw a blank for positives. Stagnant pay for my work. Higher taxes for upper middle income bracket. Decreasing property values. Race, Religion, and Wealth controlling political decisions. I cannot see any love there.

So based on my usual relationships on Love, I cannot say that I love this country, but I can live with it.

Eb the Celeb said...

I think being proud of your country simply implies you are proud of the history and what it wa built on and I think that's why we as African American struggle with the term because we know that was not so bright for us.

A Go Bytch said...

Do I love my country? No, not really. I just happen to be born here. I don't hate it either but both love and hate is an extreme analysis of an emotion. So yes I like the country I live in.

CapCity said...

I think Chris Rock had it right regarding Black Folk & America - it's like that Uncle who raped U, but paid your way thru college - just an awkward azz relationship.

I LOVE that I am a descendent of a STRONG people who have survived & thrived!! As my profile says I'm still coming to terms with the fact that I AM a product of ALL America's cultures: African, Native American, Caucasian & prolly even Asian...

Torrance Stephens bka All-Mi-T said...

i can live in a whole host of cvountyries and not miss a beat. I mean living 6 12 18 mths, thats the only way u can get a feel
but im here too and would really ;like iple citizenships like ltinational paper chasers

be safe folk and have fun

Sharon because it had to be said! said...

This is a very good question Rich and as the previous commenters and you have demonstrated, one that has many answers as well as interpretations.

Me....I can honestly say that "YES, I love my country, this country, the U.S. of A! When I say that, I mean I love it the same way I love my child...I love it for what it is most of the time, a great place to live. I love it for the idealism of what it was at its birth, a place where anything is possible. I also love it for what it represents at its best, FREEDOM.

Here's the thing, having traveled outside of this country quite extensively to places far and wide including Africa, I have found that even with its faults, America is a place where even if we are not as "free" in some ways as we might wish to be, we are indeed "more free" than just about any people living anywhere else; and for that, to the U.S. of A. I pledge my love. Now that doesn't mean I agree with the existence or legality of the I.R.S., income taxes, and a host of other things, but the beauty of being an American is that I can say that, and in response, another American can call me un-American...THAT MY FRIEND IS SOMETHING TO LOVE!