The American flag is supposed to be a symbol of what unites us.

But, unfortunately, the symbolism of Old Glory often gets muddled. When patriotism gets conflated with extreme nationalism, the flag becomes a symbol of xenophobia. When people fly the flag with pride while preaching of intolerance, our flag becomes a symbol of bigotry. When the banner itself is held higher in importance than the freedoms for which it stands, our flag becomes a false idol.

I've long believed patriotism doesn't belong only to those who define it by narrow, nationalistic standards. However, those are the folks who usually pop into my mind when I think of people who show their patriotism with a flag. And I'm not alone.

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Thanks for stopping by Day 29 of Upworthy's 31 Days of Happiness Countdown! If this is your first visit, here's the gist: Each day between Dec. 1 and Dec. 31, we're sharing stories specifically designed to bring joy, smiles, and laughter into our lives and yours. It's been a challenging year, so why not end it on a high note, with a bit of laughter? Check back tomorrow (or click the links at the bottom) for another installment!

Spread the news, y'all: Barbie backs marriage equality!

In a few adorable Instagram posts, Mattel shared photos of two dolls of the same gender staring lovingly into each other's (plastic, painted) eyes. In the pics, the Barbies are wearing "Love Wins" shirts. ❤️ 💜 💛 💚 💙

"Proud to wear this 'Love Wins' shirt with @songofstyle!" one caption reads. (Can we talk about how cute that little plastic pup is too? Can I have one?!)

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Before you buy a new T-shirt, here are 8 things to know.

They're totally comfortable, always fashionable ... and not super-sustainable.

It's one of the most famous — and ubiquitous — articles of clothing in modern history. So much so that you're probably wearing one right now.

It's the mighty T-shirt, and though it may seem simple and unassuming, there's quite the story in its humble threads. So, in honor of T-shirt weather, here are nine important things — good and bad — that you might want to know about this beloved article of clothing.

1. F. Scott Fitzgerald — you know, the author of "The Great Gatsby" — is credited with naming the T-shirt.

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Heroes
True
Savers