___Nationalism vs Patriotism

Yes these two words are different but many times people use them interchangeably to depict love and devotion towards one’s country. Some people say Nationalism is an extreme form of Patriotism, while others think that Patriotism is more rational and progressive than that of Nationalism. What do these terms actually mean?

Comic by Jen Sorensen h/t: https://splinternews.com/comic-patriotism-vs-nationalism-1820459621


  • A patriotic person tends to tolerate criticism and tries to learn something new from it, but a nationalist cannot tolerate any criticism and considers it an insult.
  • Patriots believe that their country is one of the best and can be improved in many ways. Nationalists believe their country is THE best and resist change.
  • Nationalism makes people make excuses for mistakes made in the past, while patriotism encourages people to understand shortcomings so improvements can be made.
  • Nationalism stresses unity by way of cultural background, including believing in one language and heritage superiority. Patriotism stresses a love for a nation, with emphasis on the freedom of values and belief than one heritage or religion.

Nationalism is an evil. It causes wars, its roots lie in xenophobia and racism, it is a recent phenomenon – an invention of the last few centuries – which has been of immense service to demagogues and tyrants but to no one else. Disguised as patriotism and love of one’s country, it trades on the unreason of mass psychology to make a variety of horrors seem acceptable, even honorable. Nationalism leads to entire populations turning a bling eye to injustice because it convinces people it’s in the best interest of their country.

Patriotism is the feeling of love, devotion and sense of attachment to a homeland and alliance with other citizens who share the same sentiment. This attachment can be a combination of many different feelings relating to one’s own homeland, including ethnic, cultural, political or historical aspects. Originally the term meant one who supported the rights of “country” or “land” against the King and his court. In other words, a patriot stood for the rights of local self-government and was opposed to tyrannical rule-even by his own king. Thus, true patriotism is the impulse to defend one’s land, country or way of life against unjust governmental oppression that harms us all.

Are you a nationalist? Or a Patriot?
What about your leaders?

4 thoughts on “___Nationalism vs Patriotism”

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