Friday, November 11, 2011

Another Boorish American

In his latest column in the Inlander, George Nethercutt expresses how great America is and how the rest of the world is either ignorant or unappreciative of that greatness.

Having returned recently from delivering a lecture series to students and faculty at a university in Great Britain, I found a disturbing culture of ignorance abroad about longstanding principles underlying America’s place in a dangerous world and a regrettable tendency to forget times when the United States has been a reliable source of support for people everywhere.

He goes on to talk about America's contributions in World War I, World War II, and the Cold War and implies that the world owes us. As for the post-9/11 era, he says foreign students are wrong to think America was unjustified in invading Iraq and deposing Saddam Hussein.

Their views threaten the likelihood that American standards for global freedom in this new century will be long upheld and embraced as good for humanity. Seeing America for the help it provides to other freedom-seeking people is de-emphasized in today’s university culture. To do so mistakenly overlooks the world’s need for a strong nation like the United States to act as a bulwark against nations whose motivations are to suppress freedom.

While it’s encouraging that foreign students show interest in the U.S. model, some American Studies students held a generally bitter attitude about American foreign policy that bordered on a deep cynicism uncharacteristic for their age and stage in life. Their negativity about America warns us about how the American story is presented to the greater world; that story should engender gratitude, not enmity.

Thanks to Mr Nethercutt's eyes we now see clearly. They should be thankful for US military bases all over the world, drone attacks, bombings, invading a country that posed no threat, and an expensive and extensive military response to a non-state threat as a reliable source of support for freedom-seeking people in this dangerous world.

Despite the left-wing nature of university thought, history proves that the U.S. emphasizing freedom abroad — not just foreign aid — is a source of salvation for all who seek liberty.

I'm guessing that "left-wing nature of university thought" means that thought which disagrees with George Nethercutt.

The United States, particularly President Obama, should more often unashamedly remind the world of America’s many virtues, so that future generations will embrace American ideals.

In this respect, Mr Nethercutt is consistent. I heard him speak three years ago at Whitworth University where he extolled American exceptionalism and how we should "export that" to the rest of the world.

The worst moments, for me, of living in other countries were when American tourists, carrying that American exceptionalism chip on their shoulder, expecting everyone to speak English, and thinking the rules don't apply to them made their boorish presence known for all to see.

I couldn't help but think, "What an asshole."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The word "nethercutt" is actually a middle English term for one whose razor slips while shaving his pubes.