Dear editor,

As much as I try to understand the mood of the country and what it might be like to walk in the shoes of the protesters, one trend keeps me nervous and guarded. It’s our loss of patriotism. Sadly, we are losing our love of country, and it’s dividing us.

Whether we are protesting for social justice or outraged at the very people we see marching, we are all in this together, under one flag! Blue and red. Left and right. Black and white. We may not be a perfect America, but we’re all Americans.

Love of country and humanity must be at the forefront of any national debate. How we treat each other during these debates is what has me worried. To everyone who is hurting: Do protest and express your freedom of speech, peacefully! Do march for social justice, without vandalism! Do advocate for those without a voice, free of violence!

We lose our identity as a nation when we pursue the freedoms granted to us in the Constitution, only to destroy the very document that gives us these rights in the first place.

Life, liberty and pursuit of happiness is the bedrock of nationalism. Our way of life and our country, regardless of it’s faults, are at stake!

Trying to stay positive and make a difference in Wausau.

Phil Harder

Editor’s note: Wausau Pilot & Review gladly publishes commentary from readers, residents and candidates for local offices. The views of readers and columnists are independent of this newspaper and do not necessarily reflect the views of Wausau Pilot & Review. To submit, email editor@wausaupilotandreview.com or mail to 500 N. Third St., Suite 208-8, Wausau, Wis. 54403.