In our quest to express national loyalty, we often refer to terms which make our loyalty absolutely clear. But often we discover that even our enemies use these same terms in their nationalistic jargon.
Two of my college-age kids were surprised to learn a few lessons from the Mayan people of The Yucatan, in eastern Mexico. A few years ago, they were working with a local church in the city of Jose Maria Morales. The people there were great and it was a life-changing experience. But my kids were surprised to learn that all of the people of the two continents (South & North America) consider themselves to be 'American'.
Here are four terms which really aren't as exclusive as we may have assumed.
Red, White, & Blue
In reality, 37 other flags of nations & ethnicities are using these colors. Even those whom the USA deems a threat to our global interests. the French, Russians, British, and even North Korea; are rallying around the term of "Red, White, & Blue".
The name America was first recorded in 1507 (together with the related term Amerigen) in the Cosmographiae Introductio, apparently written by Matthias Ringmann, in reference to South America. It was first applied to both North and South America by Gerardus Mercator in 1538.
Amerigen means "land of Amerigo" and derives from Amerigo and gen, the accusative case of Ancient Greek gē "earth". America accorded with the feminine names of Asia, Africa, and Europa.
The name America was first recorded in 1507 (together with the related term Amerigen) in the Cosmographiae Introductio, apparently written by Matthias Ringmann, in reference to South America. It was first applied to both North and South America by Gerardus Mercator in 1538. Amerigen means "land of Amerigo" and derives from Amerigo and gen, the accusative case of Ancient Greek gē "earth". America accorded with the feminine names of Asia, Africa, and Europa.
In modern English, North and South America are generally considered separate continents, and taken together are called the Americas in the plural, parallel to similar situations such as the Carolinas. When conceived as a unitary continent, the form is generally the continent of America in the singular. However, without a clarifying context, singular America in English commonly refers to the United States of America.
In some countries of the world (including France, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Romania, Greece, and the countries of Latin America), America is considered a continent encompassing the North America and South America subcontinents, as well as Central America.
This term has become greatly politicized by various factions and political correctness 'police'. In founding documents of the USA, the term native-born was used to define a person's right to seek the office of President of our current constitutional govt.
But some tribal-rights groups are seeking to establish the term as an official definition of being a legal citizen of an established tribe of the North American Indian ethnic groups. But the US federal govt. specifically uses the term 'North American Indian' for govt. purposes.
In the absolute sense, no ethnicity is 'native American'. All genealogies eventually point to an immigration point. But in another sense, anyone born in the Americas can assume the identity of 'native American'.
The term 'Indigenous' is also a relative term and open for debate or context. But in the literal sense anyone born in the American continents has a right to define as native American.
We can't properly understand the western theories of liberty without a basic study of the 'Age of enlightment' that produced much of the philosophical argument.
The Enlightenment (also known as the Age of Enlightenment or the Age of Reason; in French: le Siècle des Lumières, lit. 'the Century of Lights'; and in German: Aufklärung, 'Enlightenment') was an intellectual and philosophical movement which dominated the world of ideas in Europe during the 18th century, The Century of Philosophy.
The Enlightenment included a range of ideas centered on reason as the primary source of authority and legitimacy, and came to advance ideals like liberty, progress, tolerance, fraternity, constitutional government, and separation of church and state. In France, the central doctrines of les Lumièreswere individual liberty and religious tolerance in opposition to an absolute monarchy and the fixed dogmas of the Roman Catholic Church.
The Enlightenment was marked by an emphasis on the scientific method and reductionism along with increased questioning of religious orthodoxy—an attitude captured by the phrase Sapere aude, "Dare to know".
For the past 250 years, 'Free' has become a term of propoganda, as well. If not political or civil freedom, then at least religious freedom, as is the case with the current war on terrorism. But in the name of our fight for freedom, the US has imprisoned vast multitudes. and much of that is based solely on ethnicity. During WW2, the US forced US citizens of Japanese ethnicities to a massive disruption and detainment in 'Relocation Camps' further inland than their west coast communities. Some of those families suffered even while their sons served & died in service to the US military brances.
The phrase has its origin in the 1940s during the Second World War, especially through the anti-fascist Free World magazine and the U.S. propaganda film series Why We Fight. At this time, the term was criticized for including the Soviet Union (USSR), which critics saw as a totalitarian dictatorship. However, the term became more widely used against the USSR and its allies during the 1950s in the Cold War era, when the U.S. depicted a foreign policy based on a struggle between "a democratic alliance and a communist realm set on world domination", according to The Atlantic. The term here was criticised again for including right-wing dictatorships such as Francoist Spain, and Nikita Khrushchev said in the 21st Congress of the Soviet Communist Party that "the so-called free world constitutes the kingdom of the dollar".