Fellow Patriot:

The voluntary financial generosity of Patriots — people like you — keeps our doors open. Please support the 2021 Patriots' Day Campaign today. Thank you for your support! —Nate Jackson, Managing Editor

Cal Thomas / Sep. 18, 2014

Why Do Americans Hate America?

After some hand-wringing over British citizens who have chosen to fight with ISIS, Prime Minister David Cameron said he thinks one reason for the defection is that too many of the defectors have forgotten what it means to be British. As a means of fighting the radicalization of young people, he wants all of Britain’s schools to again teach “British values.” It is a diagnosis Americans would do well to consider because an unknown number of Americans (FBI Director James Comey says he doesn’t have a precise number because they are “hard to track”) have abandoned their country to fight with jihadists.

After some hand-wringing over British citizens who have chosen to fight with ISIS, Prime Minister David Cameron said he thinks one reason for the defection is that too many of the defectors have forgotten what it means to be British. As a means of fighting the radicalization of young people, he wants all of Britain’s schools to again teach “British values.”

It is a diagnosis Americans would do well to consider because an unknown number of Americans (FBI Director James Comey says he doesn’t have a precise number because they are “hard to track”) have abandoned their country to fight with jihadists.

In order to teach values, whether British or American, we must first agree on what they are. Since the turbulent ‘60s, some Americans have chosen to ignore, even oppose, values taught to their forebears. These tenets begin with personal responsibility and accountability, hard work, capitalism, self-reliance, faith in God and patriotism.

As I see it, too many students pay little heed to the Pledge of Allegiance. Few will serve in the military, or feel compelled to “give back” to their country as did those who fought and died for their freedom.

A look at what used to be taught in public schools before the advent of multiculturalism offers a lesson in what we have lost.

In 1923, the superintendent of Public Instruction in Lancaster, Ohio, J.J. Phillips, created a series of booklets for elementary school students called “Selections for Memorizing.” They included many verses from the Bible that would be banned today. They also included passages about respecting and loving parents and love of country.

Beginning in first grade, children were exposed to sentiments like these: “I give my hand and my heart to my country. One country, one language, one flag.”

In an entry by Daniel Webster called “Duty of American Citizens” there is this: “This lovely land, this glorious liberty, these benign institutions, the dear purchase of our fathers are ours; ours to enjoy, ours to preserve, ours to transmit. Generations past and generations to come, hold us responsible for this sacred trust. Our fathers from behind admonish us with their anxious, paternal voices; posterity calls out to us from the bosom of the future; the world turns hither with its solicitous eyes all, all conjure us to act wisely and faithfully in the relation which we sustain.”

Webster concludes: “But what are lands, and seas, and skies to civilized man, without society, without knowledge, without morals, without religious culture? And how can these be enjoyed in all their extent, and all their excellence, but under the protection of wise institutions and a free government?”

Who decided these virtues were outdated and no longer worth teaching to new generations, especially “millennials,” who seem so cynical about them?

Even conservatives, who still cling to those values in theory, are doing less in practice to affirm them. Too many have their children in public schools that challenge their beliefs. Too many conservative families are breaking up, instilling conditional love in their children.

As Peter Beinart wrote in last February’s National Journal, “The very attributes conservatives say make America special – religiosity, patriotism, and mobility – are ones they’ve inadvertently undermined. Is it any wonder millennials are less impressed with their country?”

In a letter to his wife, Abigail, John Adams wrote: “Posterity! You will never know how much it cost the present Generation to preserve your Freedom! I hope you will make good use of it. If you do not, I shall repent in Heaven, that I ever took half the Pains to preserve it.”

If we could question those Americans who have gone to fight with jihadists, it would be interesting to see what they were taught in school and how they came to hate America so much. Meanwhile, we had better get back to teaching the current and future generations what we used to teach, or risk losing not only them, but the entire nation.

“Selections for Memorizing” might be a good place to start.

© 2014 Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

Start a conversation using these share links:

Who We Are

The Patriot Post is a highly acclaimed weekday digest of news analysis, policy and opinion written from the heartland — as opposed to the MSM’s ubiquitous Beltway echo chambers — for grassroots leaders nationwide. More

What We Offer

On the Web

We provide solid conservative perspective on the most important issues, including analysis, opinion columns, headline summaries, memes, cartoons and much more.

Via Email

Choose our full-length Digest or our quick-reading Snapshot for a summary of important news. We also offer Cartoons & Memes on Monday and Alexander’s column on Wednesday.

Our Mission

The Patriot Post is steadfast in our mission to extend the endowment of Liberty to the next generation by advocating for individual rights and responsibilities, supporting the restoration of constitutional limits on government and the judiciary, and promoting free enterprise, national defense and traditional American values. We are a rock-solid conservative touchstone for the expanding ranks of grassroots Americans Patriots from all walks of life. Our mission and operation budgets are not financed by any political or special interest groups, and to protect our editorial integrity, we accept no advertising. We are sustained solely by you. Please support The Patriot Fund today!

★ PUBLIUS ★

“Our cause is noble; it is the cause of mankind!” —George Washington

The Patriot Post is protected speech, as enumerated in the First Amendment and enforced by the Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America, in accordance with the endowed and unalienable Rights of All Mankind.

Copyright © 2021 The Patriot Post. All Rights Reserved.

The Patriot Post does not support Internet Explorer. We recommend installing the latest version of Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, or Google Chrome.