American Exceptionalism can be defined as Americans thinking they are being much more superior than all other countries in terms of the country’s values, power and people. American Politics has a big role to play in American Exceptionalism as it makes it very real and practical with the laws, ideologies, theories and the fighting for rights. The real question however is “what does it mean to be American?” Is it the freedom that one must Liberty, is it purposing happiness and getting it, is it being able to provide for your family knowing that the country will keep them safe, or does being American mean that you believe in equality of all human beings no matter the race, sexual preference or religion? American Exceptionalism does not fully represent what the country is about especially when compared o ways of living of other countries.
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Throughout American History, one’s sexual orientation has always proven to be an obstacle that the country cannot come to terms with. Equality for all no matter race, gender, sexual preference or religion has been the core understanding and message of America as a country, but it has not always been this way. For years, sexual preference has proven to be an obstacle that many could never get over. It has shaped the country and in some ways caused a division between citizens. Majority of the members in the LGBTQ community try as hard as they could to fight for their freedom, fight for equality, fight for peace. Through centuries and generations, we have seen groups and individuals who have come around and tried to solve this problem. Some have worked and others have failed.
Freedom means a lot to every citizen of this country. Freedom gives one the power and ability to live their lives without the worry of not being able to provide or protect for their families, earn a good education, opportunity for good job to secure financial stability and can worship in any religion than one wishes to. As seen on 4th of July 1776 when the thirteen American colonies were declared free and independent from the British colony, many Americans were free and able to call this country theirs. Economic growth for the country with outstanding educational structures being built for a brighter future for this country. However, not everybody benefited from Americas Independence.
“The abundance of black children up for adoption” (Brettschneider, 52) shows that slavery has been a part of American History for hundreds of years now and the country is still facing the outcomes of slavery. There has been a chain reaction that has divided the country racially due to slavery and the fight for race equality. Remembering that slavery began in 1619 when the first slaves were brought to North America. During this time, there was a strong sense of resistance by the slaves which was shortly followed by them trying to adapt to the situations. This caused them to develop and create their own sense of culture, understanding and have racial pride and unity. This means that from the very beginning, the country has had a divide in terms of unity and togetherness. The unity that the slaves had was between themselves and their families. It is hard to say that there is true unity in the country but certain events and groups have caused unity in the country and that is what makes America a good country. The opportunity to have a community of people who look like you, come from the same place, or practice the same religion important to keep people together.
At a young age, I never understood what privilege was as I always thought of it as some people being “luckier” than others, but it is much deeper than that. Those with privilege do not realize that they have it because it is something that they might have had their whole lives and its normal to them. Personally, I grew up with multiples privileges such being a man, heterosexual, growing up in a Christian family in a country where this religion was basically the religion foundation in the country. My Christianity showed to be a privilege when people applied for jobs, school entrees or even sports clubs. I was never denied and education because of my religion, sexual orientation, gender or race and so this made me oblivious and ignorant to the fact that this behavior was happening around me.
American Exceptionalism as it Makes it Very Real and Practical. (2020, Jun 26).
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