I had a teacher once who loved Frederick Douglass and the Abolitionist movement so much, that he quoted him at length (as well as other influential people of the time) nearly every class.
He drilled it into my head that true patriotism is questioning the government. Questioning the validity of our laws and bounds. Questioning our morals and values. Questioning everything.
I've taken that idea and run with it throughout my life. I ask why or why not. I ask how. I ask what exactly is in this food that I am putting in my mouth. I question authority. Again and again. To the point where I thought I was going to get arrested once because a police officer thought I was being fresh, when really I just wanted to know why he felt the need to search my car.
Albert Einstein could be alive and well and sitting in front of me and be known to be the smartest man alive, and could tell me 2+2+4, and I might just ask him why. Who decided this? Why is an apple an apple? Why isn't it an orange? Why is everything so arbitrary?
Why do 18 year old men have to sign up for selective service but women don't? Why does the Bush administration need to know what books I'm purchasing or what TV shows I watch? Why do our cell phones have to be allowed to tell law enforcement angents where we are at all times?
I really could go on and on...