I myself am not proud of America. For this I make no apologies. I have the same instinctive love for my home that everyone else has but I feel no need to sanctify it. We do not love our country because we believe it is good any more than we love our families because we believe it is good. We love these things because we love ourselves, that is all. There is no nobility to it nor is there any need for nobility. I believe that I have some moral obligation to leave the society I was born into better off when I leave it, but I firmly disagree with the idea that it is necessary for me to believe that I am working on behalf of an inherently good society in order to inspire myself to do so.
Let's be very clear. Those who believe that pride is inherently good are moral cowards and emotional weaklings. If you are unable to act for the common good without the stimulant of pride, that is your problem. Do not assume that the rest of humanity shares it.
The talk-radio knuckleheads are of course taking Michelle Obnama's quote and running with it. Hannity, O'Reilly, and et. al. will usually take a minute to say of course this country isn't perfect but.... and than the predictible claptrap about how it is impossible to criticize society without directly insulting each individual therein, (Especially, of course, the respectible, mainstream families of America's suburbs.) and how a failure to take pride in the nation is to reject the polio vaccine, the defeat of Hitler, the moon landing, the internet, the fall of the Berlin wall, etc.
Pride has never been the solution to any problem, and never will be. The only way problems get solved is to focus on what is wrong with us, to embrace the muck in utter defiance of that old closeted psychopath Teddy Roosevelt.
I'm Josh Beran. I am not proud to be an American, and you all can eat my dick.