Katlyn Ogram Arizona Western College Studentn

Nationalism in Today’s Globalized World

Nationalism, as defined by Merriam Webster, is the loyalty and devotion to a nation; especially: a sense of national consciousness exalting one nation above all others and placing primary emphasis on promotion of its culture and interests as opposed to those of other nations or supranational groups.  With election season in full swing, the idea of nationalism and patriotism in the United States is a hot topic among many United States citizens.  Nationalism in the United States is something that can be viewed as both an asset and a hindrance to today’s globalized world, depending on your location in the world and the role you play in society. 

            Nationalism can be looked at as patriotism, economic nationalism, national identity that holds a diverse country together, nativism, or a movement that ideologically separates a nation from a supranational organization.  In the United States today the idea of nationalism is extremely overlooked and disregarded by many citizens because they feel that it is not their moral duty or responsibility to show pride and respect for their nation.  Students are beginning to lose the common knowledge of our country, where we came from, and how we’ve grown over our years as a nation.  The Pledge of Allegiance is something that is slowly being taken out of public and private education systems because it is becoming “offensive”.  Public figures have such an impact on everyday people when it comes to patriotism, pride, and nationalism, whether it creates a positive or a negative impact.  Just a few months ago, a popular football player on the San Francisco 49ers, Colin Kaepernick, took a stand against the National Anthem by refusing to stand at the start of the game.  This action began to spiral and more athletes, celebrities, and everyday citizens refused to stand for the Pledge of Allegiance and the National Anthem, just like Colin Kaepernick did. 

            On the opposing side, we still see an abundance of American pride on a daily basis in the streets of American neighborhoods.  Some houses have American flags hung proudly.  Some cars are plastered in military and American flag based bumper stickers.  Some stores have a wide selection of apparel with red, white, and blue and stars and stripes.  Some say that it is our moral duty to show our pride and our respect for the country that we belong to, whether we agree with all of the laws and ideas that our country believes in.  Many people believe that it is our moral duty to stand for and recite the Pledge of Allegiance and the National Anthem.  Many people believe that it is our moral duty to show respect for our flag and our nation’s colors. 

            Within the past century there has been a massive decline in the amount of patriotism and nationalism as a whole in the United States.  Typically during a time of war, a nation will grow and come together to show how much they truly care about their country.  Unfortunately though, you do not see nearly as much of the patriotism that surrounded the country years ago.  As the years have passed, Americans have become more and more egoistic and needy, expecting more out of a country that they put nearly nothing into.  People are constantly disrespecting this nation, yet expecting to sit back and enjoy all of the freedoms that our country provides for it’s citizens.  This is a constant daily struggle that is unfortunately only growing and becoming a bigger issue in the United States. 

            Nationalism is something that benefits every single person in a nation.  Whether you are rich or poor, you will be impacted by the idea of nationalism, no matter the country or nation that you are a part of.  The ideal of nationalism benefits the nation because it promotes peace, enhances teamwork, and promotes the common interest within a single nation.  Nationalism will promote peace because in many nations, national symbols like the flag and the national anthem are considered to be sacred symbols.  In countries that often promote these national symbols and the idea of nationalism rarely result in a case of war.  In a nation that promotes patriotism encourages its citizens to work together for their own individual benefits as well as enhancing their nation as a whole.  According to Harri Daniel, Nationalism encourages the idea that employees have similar interests with other workers in their company and country.  This would allow employees to have a better sense of value which would result in an improved productivity within companies and a nation. 

            If you are an American citizen, you should respect the morals and ideals that other countries have set in place.  Some of these ways of living and belief systems are called relgions and some are called political belief systems.  That same idea should be acknowledged for people of other races and ethnicities in the United States as well.  People around the world will typically live their lives according to what they believe to be right and wrong by following the rules of their country’s main religion and culture or its political system.  If you are of another nation and residing in the United States, it is still your duty and obligation to respect the nation as your own and follow all of the laws that are set in order to also be allowed to also enjoy the rights and freedoms of our country. 

            Although nationalism is often a positive asset to a nation, some citizens will look at it from the opposing view and say that it is more of a hindrance than an asset.  Nationalism is considered to be an extreme version of patriotism.  Of course it is a good idea to have pride for the country that you live in, but when it gets to the point where one nation thinks that it is greater and more powerful than another, the idea of nationalism starts to overpower the idea of patriotism.

            The idea of patriotism and nationalism in todays globalized world should definitely be looked at closely.  I believe that nationalism plays a positive role in a nation and can be looked at as more of an asset than a hindrance because it promotes peace, encourages teamwork, and promotes the common interest.  Nationalism has and will always be an important issue in the United States, even though it is unfortunately becoming an idea that is often overlooked. 

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