Jewish World Review June 30, 2006/ 3 Tamuz, 5766

Greg Crosby

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American quotes | Last week I wrote concerning the recent quote from Dixie Chicks’ Natalie Maines who said. “I don’t understand the necessity for patriotism. Why do you have to be a patriot?” Although, sadly, I’m certain there are others who would feel the same as she, there are much more of us who don’t. The vast majority of Americans are patriots who love their country.

Many Americans, some of them great, others far less than great have weighed in on America throughout history. The 4th of July is the perfect time to reflect on some of their words. These quotes are quite telling in that they give us insight as to who these people are as well as how they feel about their country. A few examples:

“I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country.”   —  Nathan Hale

“The cost of freedom is always high, but Americans have always paid it. And one path we shall never choose, and that is the path of surrender, or submission.”   —  John F. Kennedy

“If we desire to avoid insult, we must be able to repel it; if we desire to secure peace, one of the most powerful instruments of our rising prosperity, it must be known, that we are at all times ready for War.”   —  George Washington

“America was not built on fear. America was built on courage, on imagination and an unbeatable determination to do the job at hand.”   —  Harry S. Truman

“Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same.”   —  Ronald Reagan

“You cannot become thorough Americans if you think of yourselves in groups. America does not consist of groups. A man who thinks of himself as belonging to a particular national group in America has not yet become an American.”  —  Woodrow Wilson

“The Things that will destroy America are prosperity at any price, peace at any price, safety first instead of duty first and love of soft living and the get-rich-quick theory of life.”   —  Theodore Roosevelt

“If America forgets where she came from, if the people lose sight of what brought them along, if she listens to the deniers and mockers, then will begin the rot and dissolution.”   —  Carl Sandburg

“When an American says that he loves his country, he means not only that he loves the New England hills, the prairies glistening in the sun, the wide and rising plains, the great mountains, and the sea. He means that he loves an inner air, an inner light in which freedom lives and in which a man can draw the breath of self-respect.”  —  Adlai Stevenson

“Over the years, the United States has sent many of its fine young men and women into great peril to fight for freedom beyond our borders. The only amount of land we have ever asked for in return is enough to bury those that did not return.”  —  Colin Powell

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“When I was little, my mother would say to me, America is the greatest country in the world. And there was a sense, as Italian-Americans, that it was a great privilege to live in America.”  —  Francis Ford Coppola

“Everything I have, my career, my success, my family, I owe to America.”  —   Arnold Schwarzenegger

“I like America … to some extent.”  —  Michael Moore

“I want to rebuild America.”   —  Carol Moseley Braun

“I see America spreading disaster. I see America as a black curse upon the world. I see a long night settling in and that mushroom which has poisoned the world withering at the roots.”   —  Henry Miller

“American presence in Iraq is more dangerous to world peace than nuclear threats from North Korea or Iran.”   —  Rep. John Murtha, D-Pa.

“Only Americans can hurt America.”   —  Dwight D. Eisenhower

“America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.”   —  Abraham Lincoln

“G-d bless America.”  —  Irving Berlin

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JWR contributor Greg Crosby, former creative head for Walt Disney publications, has written thousands of comics, hundreds of children's books, dozens of essays, and a letter to his congressman. A freelance writer in Southern California, you may contact him by clicking here.

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