It's become so common as to be cliched that each Fourth of July, liberal-leaning news outlets run stories denigrating America--either for its past or what it has become. "America isn't as great as it thinks it is" is a genre unto itself in the days leading up to Independence Day; every bit as predictable as the hit pieces on Christianity during the Christmas and Easter seasons.
But it seems as though liberal writers target the notion of American exceptionalism with an especially gleeful relish each July, seeing it as their duty to hammer into their less-learned and erudite audiences the notion that the nation they are about to celebrate is neither unique nor particularly worth celebrating.
This year's most widely-circulated and utterly banal missive is a video from The New York Times, which posits that "America may once have been the greatest, but today, America, we're just okay."
The Times video urges viewers to "look at data" to support this conclusion, and cherry-picks said data to paint a picture of America as a violent, lazy, unhealthy, drug-addicted, crime-ridden banana republic.
"So what, besides our economy and military, are we actually number one in?" the narrator asks. "Turns out, a lot of things: Civilian gun ownership, mass shootings, TV-watching, prescription drug abuse, oh, and almost number one in environmental damage, edged out by China."
These are, of course, issues that America still faces, but the Times conveniently ignores the literally dozens of major areas in which America also leads the world--areas that prove demonstrably that it is objectively still the greatest country on Earth.
America doesn't just have the world's largest economy, we also have the highest number of people able to reap its benefits. It's no surprise that the U.S. is home to the most billionaires in the world, but it also has the most households with more than a million dollars in assets (minus the value of their housing). Out of 117 million households, more than 11 million--almost ten percent--are millionaires. And just eight percent of those millionaire households inherited their money, meaning that America has by far the most self-made millionaires in the world.
And that wealth is spread around, too. Not only does America have the world's richest citizens with $388,585 per adult, America is also the most generous country on Earth with that wealth. U.S. citizens give by far the most total dollars to charity in the world, and America has the highest rate of charitable donations as a percentage gross domestic product. On top of that, America's government gives the most total aid and most humanitarian aid to foreign countries. That means that both America's government and its citizens take care of others.
Not just through charity, either. America built its wealth on developing the technologies that have revolutionized the world. From airplanes to cars to personal computers to the internet, American inventions have powered global innovation. America is a nation of inventors, with more than a quarter of all global patent applications coming from the U.S. alone. From the smartphone to the smart home to the smart car, American technology has been changing the world for decades. Today, that has made us the unchallenged world leader in the development of artificial intelligence and robotics, with a massive $789 billion in automation technology in 2017 alone.
How are we able to do this? Because our education system isn't nearly as terrible as it's made out to be. The four best universities in the world and 61 of the top 100 are in America, and this country publishes more scientific papers and has more such papers cited than anywhere else in the globe. America also has 350 Nobel Prize winners, twice as many as the next closest country. These American geniuses are making the world a healthier place, as the U.S. spends more than any nation on earth on medical research and development and has developed more disease treatments and cures than any other country.
And America is still the land of explorers, as it's by far the world leader in space exploration. We're still the only nation to put a man on the moon...and we did it fifty years ago. The first Mars rover? The first detailed images of Pluto? The first satellite to leave our solar system? The first craft to land on an asteroid? The most powerful telescopes? All American.
Sure, other nations are trying hard to catch up, but they're being powered by American exports. America is now the global leader in both oil and natural gas production.
Even in areas of leisure, America dominates the world. Its movies and television shows are seen in more countries than any others, meaning that American culture is generally the most emulated across the globe. American music stars are the most in-demand in concert across the , and American news media is the world leader in investigating and breaking stories of global importance.
In terms of athletics, American professional sports leagues are the envy of the world, and when we compete with other nations in the Olympics, our dominance is legendary. American athletes have won 2,601 total Olympic medals, more than double the second-place Soviet Union.
America is the unquestioned gold medalist in athletics, economics, science, medicine, innovation, exploration, and pretty much every other measure of the greatness of a country, society, and culture. So great, so decidedly not "just okay," is America that it leads the world--and it's not even close--in the number of people who want to move here. 46 million immigrants out of 330 million people were born somewhere other than America but at some point in there lives emigrated. Today, millions more--both legal and illegal--will risk everything, including their very lives, for just the chance to live in America.
There could be no clearer possible sign of American exceptionalism, no better possible indicator that America is the greatest country in the world. The world's people vote with their feet and, no matter how long or difficult the journey, try desperately to make a new life here. They aren't lured by mediocrity; they're guided by a deep, abiding understanding of the clear, objective truth: That America is still, always has been, and, God willing, always will be the greatest country on earth.