Last week the Oxford Union debated the proposition: “This House regrets the founding of The United States of America.”
If that gets your ire up (it does mine, a little), remember that if nothing else, it provides a platform to spell out to those who have forgotten why the founding of the United States is so worthy of celebration, not just for Americans but for the whole world.
From National Review Online and Jonah Goldberg, one of the debaters:
The United States is not flawless, to be sure, but we are the fruit of freedom, the flawed champions of liberty and defenders of decency.
And some of the more everyday contributions of America:
From penicillin to the iPod, the artificial heart to rising crust pizza, jazz and the Simpsons to the Marshall Plan, America — through its ingenuity, openness, generosity, and adherence to the liberal principles it inherited from this great land — has championed the relief of man’s estate (in the words of Francis Bacon) and the liberty to let your freak flag fly (in the words of David Crosby).
Note: he refers to classic "liberal" principles, not the divisive, class-envy, self-loathing, America-hating, appeasing, morally-adrift liberalism of the modern era.
Goldberg's description of the event makes me smile in appreciation; no mamby-pamby milquetoast pretense of civility here, just good ole' debate:
The Union audience respects aggression, humor, and more aggression. In fact, the design and energy of the room is such that when I concluded my remarks, I felt like I should throw my sword at the upper decks like Maximus in Gladiator, shouting “Are you not entertained?!”
(That was a great scene from one of my favorite movies, by the way).
A BBC report about the event details one of the things that makes America so unique and so wonderful:
The US is a nation built not on ethnicity, not on religion, not even on history but on an idea.
The British, especially, should in the end be the most thankful for America. If it weren't for us, they'd be eating sour kraut and speaking German right now.
But then, it was just a hypothetical question, wasn't it?