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Don Anderson

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I need help with a dilemma: What does it mean to be American? And Why does it work?

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Up-date to thread’s scope: (July 10th)

Thanks for all the comments, they have been very helpful.
I have sorted out my feeling on being American, it maybe a jumbled mess but it is working for me. And to avoid rehashing what has been said I’ll leave it at that.

But the large diversity of views here, and within America’s culture, politics, values, heritages, etc. I have to ask;

Why does it work?

By most standards we are a highly dysfunctional group, and should be a failed society.
But here we are a great nation, and by most logic that should not be the case.
Yes we are the home of the free and the brave, but also home of tyrants, cowards, passive, aggressive, moral and immoral and I could go on and on forever.

Americans are often labeled as racist and intolerant, if that was true we would not have more nationalities and different cultures than any other country in the world.
Being American is a lessen tolerance and that is something we can’t experience in heaven, but I feel the lessen goes deeper than that.


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Is American where you live, or is American a belief in freedom and liberty for all?

Firstly let me state I believe we are here to learn from experience that we can’t have in heaven. And recently I have had two events in my life that have me confused as to the lesion I should be learning from them.

My Background: I’m just an average lower-middleclass Midwest American.

Experience 1: I have been researching my ancestry for about a year now, and I feel pride with my findings. So far my ancestors range from English noble that came to America in 1633, to peasant framer and serving maid from Prussia (Germany) in 1820. No slave owners, only union army soldiers, fought for America in the war for independence, etc.

Experience 2: Many people throughout the world, now are fighting and/or protesting for freedom and libe

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    Jun 28 2013: For an out sider...

    America is a great and most powerful nation with great philosophy of democracy, freedom and liberty.

    The question one asks....
    Is it is following ideals of Democracy , freedom and liberty for all or for its own people only?

    To be true leader of the world it has to address this question honestly.
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      Jun 28 2013: Just a short time ago I replied to Anna Kazcorowska post in this thread (see below), as to the American Dream.

      My reply also answers your question, well from my viewpoint I can’t speech for the US leaders. Who should be only presiding over “We the People” and not lead us to be what they desire us to be.
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      The American Dream of peace, prosperity and liberty, has always been mankind’s dream. I’m thinking because America showed the world how it can be achieved for all and the benefit of all being free to pursue it, mankind’s dream become known as the American dream.

      The “all being free to pursue it” is the key, with it meaning "ALL of mankind" and not just our family, town or country. And that is/was what often sets the America Dream apart from the rest.

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