In Response To: Being Called “UnPatriotic”

This post could also be called – “Wow, Alyssa knows a lot of uppity ignorant people on Facebook.”

So recently on Facebook I posted a status about the World Cup. I enjoy soccer a lot, I follow it regularly, and I thought I’d be a little funny. But yet again, my sarcasm always seems to be lost on Facebook. I posted this status as a joke and maybe 1% of people took it as a joke and 99% thought I was serious.

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Lord help me the comments I got… In some of my friends/family’s defense – some of them got that it was a joke and left jokey and funny responses. But some people left very VERY very ignorant responses. Most of those idiotic comments got deleted – about 5 or 6 of them. One person even got unfriended because their comment was so ludicrous I physically couldn’t look at it without rolling my eyes. What did most of these comments say? How unpatriotic I was.

UNPATRIOTIC…. Because of soccer.

Do you even know what patriotism is? I don’t think you do…

So… Let’s look at a few definitions: 1. Patriotism – Attachment to one’s homeland or devotion to one’s country. (Gosh, it doesn’t   mention sports teams in there at all.)   2. Patriot – Person who loves, supports, and defends his/her country. A person who regards himself/herself as a defender, especially of individual rights against interference by the federal government. (Man, there is still no mention of soccer in these definitions at all.)   3. Anti-Patriotism – Belief that patriotism is wrong since people are born in a country, whether they like it or not regardless of their individuality, and that they should not be encouraged to live for the country or sacrifice themselves for it. (Gosh darn it the World Cup isn’t in here at all.)

So one could even state that a “true patriot” is someone that loves and defends their country, but does not stand idly by and find no fault in their country or leaders. A “true patriot” will stand up for what they know is best for their country and stand by the best leaders.

I’m so sorry that I will not stand idly by and support a subpar soccer team. Shame on me. How could I. I must be deported immediately. 

Saying you are a patriot, or you are patriotic for that matter, doesn’t make you one. Waving a flag, while wearing red white and blue, listening to “Sweet Home Alabama” played by a middle aged rock band after the National Anthem has just played at a 4th of July parade does not make you patriotic.

WEARING RED WHITE AND BLUE, CHANTING “USA USA USA”, AND CHEERING FOR SOCCER ONCE IN A BLUE MOON BECAUSE YOU KNOW THE USA TEAM IS PLAYING BUT YOU KNOW NOTHING ABOUT SOCCER OR EVEN THE STATS OF THE TEAM YOU ARE CHEERING FOR DOES NOT MAKE YOU PATRIOTIC. 

My status was a joke aimed at how the average ‘soccer-ignorant’ American is only cheering for the US team because it’s the US. I was not trying to mock those who have supported the US team for awhile and are knowledgeable about soccer. I was poking fun of how all of a sudden all of America is into soccer when about a month ago, most Americans wouldn’t even know anything about it. I was not making fun of those who love America, it’s soccer team, and all it has to offer as a country. My status was set up to prove the point that most of the general American public has no idea what’s going on in the World Cup and that they blindly support their country team. That’s the backbone of America now-a-days : Everyone wants to be included, even if they have no idea what’s going on. 

The current “betting odds” of the US team winning the World Cup are 150/1. Those aren’t the worst odds, but they are far far far from the best. 

I grew up with a sports loving Father, who encouraged me to cheer for who I thought was the best, and who I loved. He told me never to choose a team just because he liked them, or a friend liked them, or the majority liked them. Hence why my Father’s favorite football team is the Oakland Raiders… 

My World Cup support is split right now between Brazil and Argentina. I enjoy watching both teams play, they are energetic and fun to watch. They both have amazing players and I’ve always been fond of Brazilian soccer players. Argentina was an added bonus after I saw some clips of the team on YouTube. I’m happy that both teams are doing well at this point. Most professionals – no matter what country they are from – predict that Brazil or Argentina will win. In fact, the only people who think the US team will win the World Cup, is your average American on the street. (If I’m wrong, I’m wrong. Here’s to hoping that if the US team wins, my terrible error in judgement will soon be forgotten and I will be forgiven of my traitorous ways.)

Is it unpatriotic if I don’t cheer for my home team because they aren’t my favorite? How is turning my back on what I personally like, making me more American? As someone who loves watching and playing soccer, and considers myself at least a little bit knowledgeable about the sport, is it wrong that I view my country’s team as subpar? Does my happiness with Brazil and Argentina make me unpatriotic? 

I don’t think so. 

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