July 4th is a day when the sentiment "proud to be an American" is openly proclaimed countrywide. Whether it's by donning Uncle Sam paraphernalia or eating a bunch of cheeseburgers, there’s no denying that celebrating the country's birthday is an all-out affair.
But how do people display their patriotism the other 364 days of the year, and in which areas do they most loudly express it? Personal finance site WalletHub sought to answer that very question, aggregating what they deemed "key indicators of patriotism" into a ranking of all 50 states. Among the factors they considered were how many members of the population were enlisted in the military, how many AmeriCorps or Peace Corps volunteers there are per capita, and how many residents voted in the last election.
What the site found was that red states tend to be more patriotic than blue, and states like Utah and Minnesota are home to higher rates of volunteers than either California or New York. The latter two ranked at the bottom of the list, while New Jersey took the mantle of America's Least Patriotic State.
WalletHub admits that the idea of patriotism is a complex subject. The data inspires greater questions concerning what characteristics form true national pride, and how that pride translates into modern contexts, like whether younger generations should uphold values of global citizenship over their Americanism and how much schools and local authorities should focus on patriotism.
While you’re left to mull over those heavy-hitting concepts, check out WalletHub's top 25 most red, white, and blue states below:
- New Hampshire
- South Carolina
- North Dakota
- North Carolina