The questions “who is an American?” and “what is an American?” were central political issues in the first half of the 20th Century. They have reemerged early in the twenty-first.… Is an American someone who has loyalty to a set of ideals including freedom of speech, assembly, and religion, who pledges allegiance to a government that provides for the common defense and promotes the general welfare? Or, does being an American come wrapped in an Imperial flag, demanding unregulated private control of the nation’s wealth and lifeblood, and use of its military to pursue ambitions of expansion and domination at home and abroad?

— Charles McCollester, The Point of Pittsburgh