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Schurz on Real Patriotism

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carl-schurz-1877

The man who in times of popular excitement boldly and unflinchingly resists hot-tempered clamor for an unnecessary war, and thus exposes himself to the opprobrious imputation of a lack of patriotism or of courage, to the end of saving his country from a great calamity, is, as to “loving and faithfully serving his country,” at least as good a patriot as the hero of the most daring feat of arms, and a far better one than those who, with an ostentatious pretense of superior patriotism, cry for war before it is needed, especially if then they let others do the fighting.

Carl Schurz, “About Patriotism,” Harper’s Weekly, April 16, 1898 in: Speeches, Correspondence and Political Papers of Carl Schurz, vol. 5, p. 461 (F. Bancroft ed. 1913)

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