I do not mean to speak ill of the dead. Howard Zinn has a well-deserved place in the hearts of all liberals. However, the aphorism refered to in the title is an unfortunate legacy of that good man, because it is patently untrue. Worse, I believe it has a corrupting influence on the liberal mindset.
Don't get me wrong, dissent can be a form of patriotism. Under the right circumstances, it can even be a very high order of patriotism. But dissent is not the highest form of patriotism.
The highest form of patriotism, as I see it, is to do something for your country that is against your self-interest, narrowly understood, based on the belief that you are acting in the best interest of your country.
Such acts of patriotism include giving one's money or time to a cause they believe will improve the country, risking one's life for one's country, and, yes, speaking truth to power, particularly when doing so puts ones life, livelihood or freedom at risk.
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