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Monday, April 25, 2011

American Exceptionalism

American exceptionalism is an old idea. It was written about by the famous Frenchman Alexis de Toqueville, who traveled our country in the 1830s, by Abe Lincoln who looked upon Americans as the chosen people, and to Ronald Reagan who talked about America as a shining city on a hill. It is true that we are unique as a nation. Unlike other great powers in history, we do not hunger for empire. We are the only great power who, upon arriving in a foreign country, asks the question, "what's our exit strategy?" Certainly the colonial powers never asked that question.

We are not sure that our President shares this vision about the United States. When asked about American exceptionalism, Barack Obama replied: "Yes, there's American exceptionalism, but I suspect the Brits also believe in British exceptionalism and the Greeks in Greek exceptionalism." Well, if everybody is exceptional, then nobody is.

President Obama went around the world criticizing our country in a way that no American President has ever done. He was on an apology tour. He apologized for our actions in Iran, in Guantanamo, in Iran, for our relations with Europe, and for our alleged lack of respect for the Muslin world. In addition to denigrating American exceptionalism and his apologies, President Obama implied an equivalence between our country and some really nasty dictatorships. He seems to want a world in which there is no dominate power. He paid respect to the United Nations Human Rights Council, even though Libya holds a seat on that council. He seems to want a world that is run by international consensus.

Most Americans believe that our country is truly exceptional, and we wish our President shared our view.

Listen to the radio commentary here:

1 comment:

Frank DeMartini said...

Here is an excerpt of my latest article specifically on this topic:

While I was sitting in my hotel in Baton Rouge, Louisiana on Tuesday morning, I came across an article entitled “Trouble with ‘Exceptionalism’” by Richard Cohen. In that article, Mr. Cohen, obviously a liberal, takes the position that American Exceptionalism is a myth of the right and gives examples of why we aren’t exceptional. He states that all of the potential presidential candidates from the Republican party except maybe Michelle Bachmann use the phrase. Then he states that Ms. Bachmann just hasn’t gotten around to it yet.

His theory however is greatly flawed. He looks to ways that Americans are not exceptional such as current high school math and science scores, our history on racism, our national debt, etc. He does not look at what our politicians actually mean when they use the phrase “American Exceptionalism”. They are not talking about any of the above cited specific examples or any particular fact. What the politicians are discussing is that the American Culture and System of Government is exceptional. It is indeed our entire way of life that is exceptional. And, Mr. Cohen, it has nothing to do with God in the sense that you believe.

Read More at: www.hollywoodrepublican.net

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