Type to search

Opinion Politics

Stop whining, people — you live in history’s greatest nation


On this
Independence Day
, a Gallup poll found
a record-low 38% of respondents feel “extremely proud” to be American
. Forgive me for wanting to grab the other 62% by their lapels and scream, “What is wrong with you people?!” — with, perhaps, a few expletives as well.

It is of course fashionable for educators and the media-
complex these days to harp on all the things allegedly wrong with the United States. But are we so blind that we must accept their benighted bleatings as gospel?

No matter how weak one’s schooling is, it shouldn’t take more than a few years into adulthood to develop a sense of history and a sense of gratitude. Both senses should foster a deep-seated appreciation for the blessed miracle that is the USA.

It should not be difficult to recognize that no other nation today, or ever, could boast of the combination of attributes we take for granted. It is not some fluke of nature that our language (inherited from England) is the most spoken in the world, our money is the world’s reserve currency, our entertainers are the world’s most famous, our shores the ones that beckon the most immigrants (alas, including millions of illegal ones — but the point is how desirable the U.S. is as a destination). We lead in all of these realms, some obviously of more importance than others, because our thriving, bustling, freedom-loving culture inspires admiration and emulation in human hearts worldwide.

It is for good reason that whenever freedom or human rights are badly abused, peace is violated, or disasters occur, it is to the U.S. that the world first turns for aid or rescue. It is to our credit that we do more than any other nation to
feed the world
, protect innocents abroad, treat contagions, and explore the heavens.

Before the U.S., no nation had ever long survived as an extended republic, and none was explicitly founded on and served as a worldwide beacon for ideals of liberty. None. No other people declared their nationhood by appealing, in the name of unalienable rights, with a “decent respect to the opinions of mankind,” to the “supreme judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions.” No other national government was established through the explicit and deliberate actions of “we the people,” not to secure dominion but to “secure the blessings of liberty.”

And none, despite the caterwaulings of the “blame American first” crowd, has so lived up to those ideals, at home and abroad. We enjoy the freest speech, the most vibrant and varied expressions of faith, the amplest procedural protections in criminal trials, the most unfettered public square — and, more materially, the most robust and enduring public perception that “people are rewarded for intelligence and skill.” The simple truth is that aside from a few Nordic countries that have not borne the brunt of defeating Nazism and Soviet communism, the combination of freedom and average prosperity in the U.S. remains virtually unmatched.

Wise and reasonably aware people should be able to recognize when they are blessed. Good and decent people should be grateful for their blessings. God has blessed America, abundantly and wonderfully so. Courageous men pledged “lives, fortunes, and sacred honor” to secure those blessings 246 years ago — not just for themselves but for “posterity.” We are lesser men and women than they if, through ingratitude, we fail to secure those blessings for every future generation of mankind.

Washington Examiner

Political news and commentary about Congress, the president and the federal government from the Washington Examiner.

  • 1