Patriotism has been a subject of much interest off late. Every one has their own ideas as to what defines a patriot. That got me thinking about my own definition of patriotism.
To me, patriotism is about the everyday little things we can do to make our country a better place to live in. It is neither glamorous, nor does it make us swell up with emotion. In fact it can be quite tedious. But who said patriotism had o be either easy or palatable?
To me patriotism is about being a responsible, law abiding and considerate citizen.
- It is about, not breaking the traffic rules just because it is tempting. Breaking traffic rules is selfish and shows great contempt for fellow citizens. It creates chaos and causes inefficiencies.
- It is about paying our taxes. Dodging our taxes is cheating our country and its people. We get so angry with corruption among politicians. Yet many of us try to dodge taxes that are supposed to pay for the infrastructure we use.
- It is about respecting the country by keeping it clean, and not littering, even when it is inconvenient.
- It is about waiting our turn and not cutting in to lines.
- It is about treating fellow citizens with respect and politeness, no matter what job they have, and what their socio-economic status is.
- It is about offering my seat in the bus to old or handicapped people.
- It is about refraining from practicing nepotism and using political connections to get ahead. We as ordinary citizens may not be able to directly reduce corruption, but we can make it unacceptable by refusing to avail of it when we want to put our children in schools or get a job, or a promotion etc.
- Finally it is about living our life to it’s full potential without hurting anyone else and contributing to the productivity of the country.
Some of these are ideals and may be difficult to achieve today, but striving to achieve them, to me, is everyday patriotism.
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