To be patriotic is a feeling or thought. Patriotism is love and loyal support devoted to one's country. A man/woman going to battle and willingly dying for his country for what he/she thinks is right is patriotism. Being devoted to your country, loving it, and only wanting the best of it is also being patriotic. It is an emotion and opinion that depends on your decision as to how you are going to act in a certain situation. It is what you and you alone think and depend on. It is not a fact because a fact comes from a book and u can prove a fact but being patriotic is an opinion. A relative or family member could have been a patriot and made it count for what it's worth and you may feel strong about patriotism. I am in that situation.
Patriotic is an adjective. The word patriotism comes from a Greek word Patris, meaning fatherland.
Patriotism is a noun, meaning it is an idea. A patriot is a person that acts in being patriotic. They are someone who works hard to defend their country and stand up for what they think is right. If you read a speech on an event in what is going on in your country at the time and it states your opinion on it in the speech then you have just acted in being a patriot.
If you want to write to the White House or state your opinion, then it is up to you and you are welcome to do so if it pleases you. You don't have to be a powerful person to contribute. This is an example of being patriotic. Not trying gets you nowhere. On the other hand trying gets you to state your opinion and what you think is right for your country and also gets you to where you are heard. Patriotism as I said before is stating what you think is best for your country and is a feeling. Everyone had been patriotic before and will continue to do so through out life so since it is going to go on in what you say or think then make the best of it and make sure it counts. Be heard, that's what it's all about.