Land of the Free, Home of the Brave

April 19, 2011
America is the role model for the rest of the world because it is the only superpower. It has the largest economy, is the most technologically advanced, and is the most politically and militarily powerful. However, it has not always been that way. Although America hasn’t always been a prime role model in the past, it has learned from previous mistakes and has evolved into a great nation.

Part of what makes America into the great country it is today are the opportunities. Unlike many countries, America is based on entrepreneurship, where people take the initiative and risk to start their own ventures and enterprises. People are constantly inventing and investing in America, which makes us prosperous and rich.
Evidence of this hard work is seen in the immense number of patents and copyrights the United States issues each year. In 2010, 219,614 patents were issued in the United States, the most in the world (United States Patent and Trademark Office). The United States government is the most business-friendly in the world. In other countries, it takes several months to start a new venture, while in the United States it takes less than a week!
Unlike many other countries in the world, the United States does not force people into occupations that they don’t want. Americans are allowed to experiment and spread their wings to see what they like and what works best for them. They have the opportunity to choose their profession and where they would like to work. This high degree of freedom is what made American into the economic powerhouse of the world.

America has a great wide variety of freedoms. Granted, there have been numerous examples of rights violations in the past, but America has done more than any other country in history to extend rights and erase racial and religious racism and segregation. In America, men and women of any race or denomination can vote, speak freely, and live life the way they want to. Probably the best example of this change is with African Americans in the United States. They were originally brought to America to be slaves, but eventually gained their freedom from hardship after the Civil War.
After the Civil War, they were segregated from white society and were violently terrorized by organizations such as the Ku Klux Klan. African Americans were treated inferior up until the Civil Rights Marches in the 1960’s, where activists such as Martin Luther King Jr. pressed the U.S. government for equality for all men.
Another example of this struggle for rights was with women. Women weren’t given equal status until the 20th century, but it was only through the hard work of activists such as Susan B. Anthony and Ida B. Wells. Women had to petition and work continuously for many years before any legislative action was taken to ensure the rights of women. One possible criticism of America is that these changes in society did not come quickly enough, or that we initially created many barriers that these activists later had to overcome to achieve freedom.
Even though we weren’t and still aren’t completely perfect, the United States has evolved into the most free and opportunistic society in history. But these changes for the better could only be made because of our past mistakes. These mistakes have made us learn what is best for society, and they have taught us that to be prosperous and successful as a country, everybody must have equal rights and opportunities. And that is what makes America so great and successful; we are the freest and have the most opportunities.

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