Any American who’s honest with themselves is into America and Americanism not as a means to punish or denigrate other nations or peoples. We are enthusiastic about this country because we think it’s ideals offer the best way for all people on earth to achieve liberty and happiness.
Why do we think this? Because we have lived it.
Yes, some groups in America have gotten, and some continue to get, a raw deal. This is not because of America. This is because human beings have the capacity to be awful.
But like all good religious principles, moral codes, or systems of government, the U.S. Constitution is not an attempt to perfect human nature, but to mitigate its destructive effects and channel them towards positive ends.
Checks and balances. Enlightened self-interest. Capitalism. A democratically elected representative republic. A federation of states as a counterweight to a central government. Three branches of government. Presidential term limits. Abolition of aristocracy and nobility. “Negative” rights. All of these things were designed to create conflict and inefficiency in government for a simple reason.
So government will leave the people the hell alone.
We need government. America recognizes it’s potential for destruction and tries to make sure that, except for those instances where government is the only power with the capacity to act, power and decision making authority are spread out as much as possible.
We’ve lost our way over the centuries, but I’ll take our problems over any other nation’s.
We’re naively optimistic here in the US. We honestly believe we can and will overcome anything.
It’s a delusion, sure. But it’s a delusion that works for us. And I think the rest of the world appreciates an optimistic America.
I love this country, warts and all.
Flashback: Some of my favorite things about American culture.
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