Poverty

Why are the poor so patriotic?

Why are the poor so patriotic?

Patriotism may be defined as a belief in the greatness, if not superiority, of one’s country relative to others. By this definition, between 85 to 90 percent of America’s poor are “patriotic.”

The corresponding figures for working-class, middle-class, and upper-class Americans are lower. And the worst-off in most other advanced nations are less patriotic — even in countries where people receive better social benefits, work fewer hours, and have better chances of upward mobility than their counterparts in the U.S.

Why are America’s poor so patriotic? We don’t know for sure. And we should, because so much depends on their patriotism. Their love of country contributes to social...

43°