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Summary: Our duty, as it were, as American citizens, inheres in honoring our country, right or wrong. Ought we, however, to affirm this largely undisputed assumption?
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Every child is instructed to recite the Pledge of Allegiance, indoctrinated to respect the American flag, and inculcated to revere veterans as heroic champions of liberty. Patriotism—our deep-seated affinity toward our country—undergirds our national consciousness and unites the disparate microcosms within our nation. Day after day, hour after hour, moment after moment, the culture reinforces the supreme perspective that patriotism is a virtue. Our duty, as it were, as American citizens, inheres in honoring our country, right or wrong.
Ought we, however, to affirm this largely undisputed assumption? This brief proffers evidence undermining the philosophical foundations of patriotism, exposing its subjectivity and exhibiting its erosion of rationality. Because patriotism has entrenched itself in the American value paradigm as incontrovertibly positive, challenging that fixed assumption through might not ingratiate you with your judges. Always accentuate the credibility of your sources and engage in persuasive techniques such as lamp shading to mitigate the potential prejudice of your audience.
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Joel consistently won tournaments or advanced deep into elimination rounds in NCFCA speech and Lincoln-Douglas debate. As a collegiate forensics competitor, he has enjoyed similar success with parliamentary debate and mock trial. Currently, Joel studies philosophy at Wheaton College and coaches debate for multiple organizations.