The definition of American Exceptionalism is that America is unique when compared to the other countries of the world. The concept is usually construed by two extreme viewpoints: One is that America is different, and because it is different, it is an amazing country with little to no flaws when compared to other countries. The other view takes the opposite position, condemning America for all its flaws with the claim America is not the greatest country in the world and only believes it is.
These two perspectives do have valid arguments, but I believe a third point of view should be examined in light of the new challenges facing our county and our place in the world.
I view American Exceptionalism as being that America is unique in its founding and formation compared to other countries across the globe. Now the fact that America is unique, does not mean it is perfect. America has many flaws and imperfections, but instead of ignoring those imperfections, I say we acknowledge them and find a way to keep pushing forward.
I know with the political climate, it is hard to be proud of the state that our country is in. It is easy to be consumed by bitterness and distaste by our what we see on our political discourse, while at the same time it is also easy to ignore the state that our country is in and be willfully blind to the issues that are present.
I argue that we should not be on either side of the spectrum no matter how difficult social change appears to be, because what will happen is that nothing will change.
I say that we need to appreciate how unique America is when compared to the rest of the world. Being one of the few countries that formed and developed because of common values and beliefs, not by ethnicity, religion, culture and etc. Our country has achieved great things, but those achievements did come at a price. There are things that happened in our country that as an American, as a patriot; I am not proud of.
However, it is the acknowledgment of those mistakes that I believe need to be acknowledged and remembered so they do not happen again. We need to do more than just talk about the issues of the past and the current status now, we need to keep moving forward. We need to look at solutions and ways to prevent conflict. We are inheriting a country and a world that has serious problems and we need serious minded people who will not demonize the opposition but look for common ground, commons sense solutions. Only then will we achieve that new version of American Exceptionalism.