In two separate guest essays written for the outlet, both Duke law professor Jedediah Britton-Purdy and contributing opinion writer Margaret Renkl addressed the obvious lack of enthusiasm for America on the left.
They both argued that if progressives are going to take this country back after the Supreme Court reversal of Roe v. Wade for example, they better start getting excited about caring for it.
In her column titled, “Democrats Need Patriotism Now More Than Ever,” Britton-Purdy cited a Quinnipiac poll showing that “68 percent of Republicans said they would stay and fight, compared with 40 percent of Democrats,” if the country were invaded.
She remarked, “Conservatives often say that liberals don’t really like this country, and these figures suggest they might have a point. In progressive circles, claiming patriotism is, at best, an eyebrow-raiser.”
Britton-Purdy acknowledged the challenges American leftists are facing, stating that during this July 4th, America has the “world’s highest incarceration rate, sky-high per capita carbon emissions, an epidemic of gun violence and abortion bans across much of the American map.”
“Progressive disgust has clear appeal,” she wrote.
Despite the temptation to despair, the author urged liberals to find love for the country. “But progressives need patriotism, more than ever in a time of understandable anger and despair. We want to make the world better by our lights, and to do that we need a stronger democracy.”
Britton-Purdy urged her readers to find a “July 5” style of patriotism, in reference to what she explained was the old abolitionist tradition of critiquing Independence Day the day after when slavery still existed.
She explained, “This version of patriotism links criticism of our country’s failings with a commitment to changing them. It cleaves to principles of freedom and equality because they are right, and also because they are ours, they are us.”
Renkl’s essay, titled, “The American Flag Belongs to Me, Too, and This Year I’m Taking It Back,” was a bit more personal. In it, she expressed that during the Trump years through today, “Old Glory has become such a strong a feature of Trump rallies that many liberals have all but rejected it, unwilling to embrace the symbol of a worldview that we find anathema.”