They put out the flag on Veterans Day. They participate in Scouting, PTAs, church fundraisers and chambers of commerce. They turn out for the Fourth of July parades. They stand for the pledge of allegiance before city council meetings. They volunteer as firefighters and EMTs. They forge lifelong friendships with neighbors whose political views clash with their own. They tend to make up their own minds on issues, but they fervently believe in the common good.
They have a history of being politically involved without being blindly partisan, and of being proudly patriotic without resorting to belligerent jingoism. And tomorrow night is the time when all of those qualities manifest themselves in a truly extraordinary form of Americanism: the Iowa caucuses.