Am I a Patriot?

As a german citizen i have an ambivalent attitude toward patriotism. I love my country, I love the countyside, its many quaint cities, the urban untamedness of Berlin and foremost I love the people. But am I proud to be a German? No. I have done nothing to be a german. I was born german. How can a person be proud of something he or she did not accomplish? I never served in the army, I am not a politician or a journalist, I am not an innovator. How can I be proud? Do I have the right to be proud? Thing is: I want to be proud, but I do feel that it is a right one has to earn. That is one reason why I started to blog. I want to help shape this nation, become part of the political discourse. And I feel, that if through writing I can get only one more person to vote their concienence or better one persons view of Germany, I can be a little more proud.

I am not proud to be german any more that I am proud to be a human being, but I am damn glad.

So who can be proud of being a German citizen? I’ll tell you my opinion: All the Turks, Greeks, Italians, Albanians, Morrocans and indeed all imigrants that came here to seek prosperity. They left their own countries, their families and friends, because they believed germany was better for them. A country that has not welcomed them with open arms. A country whose Wirtschaftswunder (economic wonder) was built on cheap imported labor of the “Gastarbeiter” (guest worker). They can and should be proud!

I respect immigrants a great deal for making this country what it is today, and for chosing my home over theirs.

That said, I believe I am a patriot, but not of the conservative lot, who believes everything should stay as it is, or longs for the “good old days”.
I wish and hope the best for this nation and the people who help to build it and further its cause. I want to be part of it and stand by it. I vote and I excercise my right to free speech. I keep an open mind and I share my opinion with others. Yes I am a patriot, but not in the way most people think of patriotism.


4 comments on “Am I a Patriot?

  1. Fiona.q says:

    that is very true: Germany is not a country who welcomes the immigrants with open arms.

  2. I don’t see why immigrants should be proud of Germany. As you stated correctly, they were (and still are) “cheap imported labor”, as this country took advantage of their even poorer expectations in their home lands. This is nothing anybody should be proud of. That doesn’t mean that they should hang their heads in shame, but rather they should stand up against this country.
    And they should do so together with “cheap domestic labor”. I also don’t understand why you would want to be a patriot. Modern state solely exists for the purpose of securing private property, which in effect forces those who don’t have any meaningful private property to work for those who do and ultimately become “cheap labor”. Even if you are not poor, I bet you could use a couple of bucks more every month. And if that is the case, I wouldn’t recommend patriotism to you.
    Patriotism is nothing but a Stockholm syndrome…

    • Thanks for commenting. I think Immigrants can be proud of what they have done to build this country because they have given much and received little. So we owe them. If you build something, make something better, should you not be proud? I do not think they should stand up against the country. You would not tear down a house you built because you do not like it yet either, would you? We should protest the treatment of people in poor working conditions. But what do you mean by standing up against the country? Should they join a union? build a political party? Or god forbid vote in their best interest? There are many ways of forming the state by not standing ‘against’ something, but ‘for’ something.
      I do not believe that the state exists solely for protecting private property. How do emergency medical services protect your property and not your life? How does road construction protect your property? You approach the issue rather single mindedly and assume I love the state the way it is. Point is, I like its potential and love what it could become. I am not the states hostage, I am not outside the state. I am part of the state and I want to improve it.

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