Report on I ♥ __(Fill In Your Country Here!)__
Smart girls decide for themselves™.
During July 2006, all of us here at SmartGirl were wondering how SmartGirls feel about their country and its armed forces. SmartGirls shared their thoughts with us about patriotism - what it is, how they feel about it, and what they do to show it. SmartGirls also offered a special look into the armed forces in their country - whether or not they would join, why they would join, and who they think should have the right to participate. Read on to learn all about SmartGirls and their countries from around the world. And be sure to read all the way to the end so that you can learn the words to new national anthems that you may hear at a country near you!
Note: The numbers in parentheses below refer to the number of SmartGirl respondents.
Two hundred and forty-eight SmartGirls participated in this survey. Although the majority of survey respondents were girls (237), there were a few boys (3) who participated as well. SmartGirls who responded to this survey were generally between the ages of 10 and 16 and were the oldest in their family (110). Although the majority of SmartGirls identified as having European descent as their racial/ethnic background (84), SmartGirls also identified as having African descent (19), Asian descent (19), Latin American descent (18), Native American descent (9), Middle Eastern descent (5), and Oceania/Pacific Islander descent (2). Thirty-two SmartGirls identified as multiracial. The majority of SmartGirls who responded to this survey live in a town (90) or a suburb (66) but some also live in big cities (31), rural areas (24), and villages (9). SmartGirls from around the world participated in this survey about their countries. Although the majority of respondents were from the United States (151), SmartGirls responded from China, India, Italy, Wales, and more!
|Ethnicity of SmartGirl Survey Respondents
|Although the majority of SmartGirls identified as European, SmartGirls identified with ethnicities from around the world.
Before we talk about how SmartGirls feel about patriotism, it is important to understand what they mean by patriotism in the first place. Read on to discover patriotism in the words of SmartGirls from around the world. What do these definitions all have in common? How are they different? Which definitions do you believe in?
~ Feeling love and pride for your homeland.
~ Being behind your country and defending it when it needs you to.
~ Strong devotion to your country and being willing to fight for it.
~ Loyalty to your/a country and/or the people of a country.
~ Love of your country, supporting your country, learning about your country, and standing by your country.
~ Love and feeling for one's country. If you have patriotism you send things for the soldiers, always speak the pledge of allegiance in the beginning of the day, and care about your fellow citizens.
~ Proud feeling you get when you look at the symbols of your country.
~ Being proud of a piece of land inside borders drawn by people; usually where you were born or were you live or have lived.
~ Loyalty to your country.
~ Believing in and liking your country and taking pride in the traditions and history of it.
~ Standing by your country's side in times of need.
~ Sign of respect and honor towards your country.
~ A love for your country and your heritage.
~ Being on the side of your country, standing up for it, and celebrating the things your country is known for.
~ Being openly proud and faithful to one's country or group.
~ Believing in the safety and rights of the people who live around you.
~ Trust and confidence in one's own country.
~ What you do for your country year round, not just on national holidays.
~ Representing and respecting your country and its culture.
~ Expressing your country in a positive way and with enthusiasm.
~ Celebrating and helping your country.
~ Being proud of where you live and how you have been brought up. Not showing any shame about where you are from. But being able to disagree with your country's politicians, government, etc.
~ Pride and connection one feels for/to their country.
~ Knowing that even if your government is doing terrible things it is not the entire country's fault. It is not losing hope. It is sticking around to fight for what you believe in.
The majority of SmartGirl survey respondents believe that their country is patriotic. On a scale of 1 (not patriotic at all) to 10 (very patriotic), 182 SmartGirls rated their country's patriotism at 7 or higher. But how patriotic are SmartGirls? Well, SmartGirls are more likely to call their country patriotic than to call themselves patriotic! Overall, SmartGirls survey respondents believe that they are patriotic. However, on a scale from 1 (not patriotic at all) to 10 (very patriotic), only 81 SmartGirls will rate themselves at 7 or higher on the patriotic scale.
|Patriotism of SmartGirl Countries
|On a scale from 1 to 10, SmartGirls generally believe that their country is patriotic.
|On a scale from 1 to 10, SmartGirls generally see themselves at patriotic. However, there are many SmartGirls who do not feel patriotic at all.
Whether they consider themselves patriotic or not, SmartGirls tell us what they think the best way is to demonstrate patriotism. According to SmartGirls, the top five ways to demonstrate patriotism are: celebrate national holidays (38), volunteer in your community (34), support people who served or are serving in the armed forces (31), vote in elections (31), and other demonstrations of patriotism (40). What do SmartGirls do to demonstrate their own patriotism? The top four ways that SmartGirls demonstrate their own sense of patriotism are: celebrate national holidays (160), support people who are serving or served in the armed forces (94), wear clothes or other items with national symbols on them (89), and volunteer in your community (79). SmartGirls also protest actions their government takes that they don't believe in (42) and vote in elections (41) in order to demonstrate their patriotism.
SmartGirls have strong feelings about the idea of patriotism. SmartGirls strongly agree or agree that someone can be patriotic but not support everything their country does (208). However, it is important to note that 24 SmartGirls are uncertain as to how they feel about this issue. Can someone feel patriotic about two different countries at the same time? Only 9 SmartGirls felt that this was completely impossible. SmartGirls believe someone can feel patriotic about any country they are connected to in any way (79), about a country their ancestors are from (57), about a country that they once lived in (44), and about two countries they currently live in at different times during the year (25). SmartGirls strongly disagree or disagree (150) that someone who is not a full citizen of a country is not as patriotic as someone who is a full citizen. It sounds like SmartGirls do not believe in a strong connection between patriotism and citizenship.
The majority of SmartGirl respondents said that they will not serve in their country's armed forces (161) and many said that they are not sure if they would or not (50). However, 19 SmartGirls said that they would serve in their country's armed forces and one already does! Why would a SmartGirl join the armed forces? Most SmartGirls said they would join the armed forces as part of their patriotic duty (72). However, SmartGirls also would join the armed forces for educational purposes (61), during a time of war (47), if they had family members in the armed forces (41), for a steady job (37), if they had friends in the armed forces (21), or because it was mandatory in their country (19).
|Would SmartGirls Serve in their Country's Armed Forces?
|Although the majority of SmartGirls would not serve in their country's armed forces, there are SmartGirls who would or already do! And there are some SmartGirls who are not sure if they would serve or not. What would you do?
Many SmartGirls already know someone who is serving or has served in the armed forces. The majority of SmartGirls' grandparents (116) or family friends (82) are serving or have served in the armed forces. However, SmartGirl aunts and uncles (68), fathers (42), cousins (41), close friends (36), siblings (13), and mothers (10) have also served in the armed forces at some point in their lives. The majority of SmartGirls know at least 1 person who is serving or has served in the armed forces (201).
|Number of People SmartGirls Know Who Are Serving or Have Served in their Country's Armed Forces
|The majority of SmartGirls know at least 1 person who is serving or has served in their country's armed forces.
The majority of SmartGirls believe that their country spends just the right amount of money on the armed forces. Forty-four SmartGirls believe their country should spend a little more or a lot more on the armed forces while 89 SmartGirls believe their country spends a little too much or way too much money on the armed forces.
The majority of SmartGirls (123) who responded to this survey live in a country where there is not mandatory military service. However, 28 SmartGirls live in a country where there is mandatory military service. Do SmartGirls agree with drafting people to serve in the armed forces? The majority of SmartGirls believe that a draft is a horrible idea that should never be done (138). However, some SmartGirls believe that there should be a draft during wartime (43).
Recently, there has been international news about crimes committed during wartime by people in the armed forces. What do SmartGirls think should happen to these people who commit crimes during wartime? Seventy-nine SmartGirls believe that they should be held accountable but the cirumstances of wartime should be taken into consideration. Sixty-five SmartGirls believe they should be held accountable just like any other citizen. And forty-four believe they should be excused due to the unusual circumstances of wartime. As always, there are some SmartGirls who are uncertain as to how they feel about this issue.
|What do SmartGirls Believe Should Happen to People Who Commit a Crime During War?
|Recently, there has been international news about crimes committed during wartime by people who are serving in the armed forces. SmartGirls are generally undecided about what should happen to these people.
Currently, 194 SmartGirls live in countries where women can serve and fight in their country's armed forces. Thirty-six SmartGirls live in countries where women can only serve in the armed forces but not fight, and 5 SmartGirls live in a country where women cannot participate in the armed forces. No matter what their country does, SmartGirls generally believe that women should serve and fight in the armed forces (189). The majority of SmartGirls also believe that LGBT people should be allowed to serve in the armed forces (186). However, 19 SmartGirls believe LGBT people should be allowed to serve in the armed forces only if they don't share their sexual orientation and 27 SmartGirls do not think LGBT people should be allowed to serve in the armed forces.
|What is the Role of Women in the Armed Forces in SmartGirl Countries?
|The majority of SmartGirls live in a country where women can both serve and fight in the armed forces.
We asked SmartGirls to think about what a national anthem should express, and they sent us some amazing lyrics! What countries do you think these songs best represent? What do you think these songs would sound like? Which song would you like to sing? Read on to find your favorite one!
~ Together we stand, protecting this land. We love one another, each citizen is our brother. We stand firm at all times, saving others lives. We will be faithful forever, ready to serve whenever.
~ A national anthem should express the country's gratitude to all the people and the lyrics should say how proud the country is. The lyrics should go:
When the battle rages in the night,
and all the people stand in fright.
These citizens will always fight.
And keep with all their might.
Without the people of this land,
we would never stand hand in hand.
Citizens - this position needs respect,
how we show that always will reflect.
Our country is prosperous and good.
Strangers are often offered food.
God himself watches over this great nation,
and blesses us with his donations.
~ The people we loved
who risk their lives for us
in times of need fly spirit fly
rejoin with the others...
~ My country's flag waves high
My country's flag waves high in the sky
Showing our patriotism
Showing our love
For out beautiful ritual
The ritual of America
~ I praise then everything I praise
I salute then everything you salute
~ The country I love, the home I was born to, the place I have joined. I may not have been born here, I may not have fought the war, but I'm an American and this is my country! It's the place I love; it's the place I like to call home; it's the place that makes me feel comfort so please don't take that away. Oh, please don't take that away
~ Standing up for what we believe in
Fighting for freedom
Being proud of our country
Helping other countries
~ Our country stands for freedom
We will turn no one away
We live to not judge
But we have
We lost our great nation
To a monster of hate and judging
No one is totally free anymore
We have lost the great United States
and become another Iraq
~ Go Canada, we're all cool,
Feel free to be yourself,
Be proud of who you are,
No matter what!
~ For our country, we stand.
For the loved ones, at hand.
For the home, for our lives.
We live, and then die.
For we are free.
For our family in need.
~ We fight for what we believe in and stand up for what is right!
We do not stand for injustices we seek to set the wrong, right!
We care for our enemies we care for our people we care for the ones who cannot care for themselves!
We stand together in unity,
Uniting our differences to play for our strengths so that we may work to make the world a better place to live and love.
We will forgive and never give up!
~ The colors of the flag are red, white, and blue. It tells us that the U.S. is true. If you would like to stand tall, you will be a part of it too.
~ Free, free
We are finally free
To make our own choices
Now, come here,
Let's lift our voices and...
~ Brave, true,
red white and blue,
and they ask who?
That's the name,
~ The bright lights of 50 stars are shining and will forever shine.
~ I'm not a poet so I'll just say what an anthem should say or what it should include:
It should tell about general sacrifices the country has made for its citizens.
Tell about the love the citizens of that country have (or should) have for it.
Tell about the freedoms that the country has.
Tell about the support the citizens give the politicians and armed forces of their country. Even if they don't agree with the situation, they should still support the people who are sacrificing their lives and families for their country so the citizens can be free.
~ This is our country. The country we love. We would all fight for it in all the ways we could. Whether it was fighting, cooking, taking care of the sick or wounded. We are a free country, and hope to stay that way.
~ Stick together no matter what. We are here for each other. No matter what, we do our best to live in perfect harmony.
~ Peace and justice
love and care
a team and an individual
acceptance and tolerance
~ The land of the free,
It has rolling hills,
And mountains so tall,
Trees and all.
I love the USA!
~ Serve our country with pride, live for today, think about your actions now, never tomorrow, love and cherish your life, never let it get away, stay together, live for glory, but do not let it get in the way of the love this country holds, treat everyone the same, and love your life!
~ National anthems should express truth:
The country of hope
Sow the seeds of tomorrow
Look to the future
Look to the future
Love and peace
Lay the path for the future
~ I am a part.
My homeland is a tune.
I am a note.
Our beautiful land
is the song
playing a small part.
Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts
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are not scientific because the pollsters cannot randomly select the
respondents to participate in the surveys.
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policy. All data copyright 1996-2000.