Jewish World Review April 22, 2003 /20 Nissan, 5763
America is just
built to succeed
A certain perspective tends to dominate the Marxist-derived visions of
those among us who most furiously denounce our nation. They seem to
believe that something, from somewhere outside the U.S., is going to
save them from the horrors of capitalism or the terrible greed and
corruption of those elected to office, be they Democrats or
Sorry. We are not going to be saved by any system of ideas arriving
from outside this country.
Whatever happens to us will come as a result of what we in America do
about our problems.
Neither Marx nor Lenin, Russia nor China, neither the academics who
seek tenure as radicals on our campuses nor the French academics
they so often parrot will do us whatever justice we need to have done.
The reason those on the far left - or those who are merely
unquestioning liberals - look beyond our shores is that they, like most
academics or those influenced by academics, have no real faith in the
judgment of Americans. Or they are not willing to accept that we have
traveled the distance that we have from slavery and every other kind of
We have paid in blood, in trauma, in disillusionment, exhaustion and
horror for every step beyond the muck of bigotry that we have walked
on this road that distinguishes our nation.
We have not needed leadership from outside America because our
tragic and optimistic destiny has been to show what can be done inside
a democratic structure such as ours. We have had to do battle with the
demons within us - some of those demons have been based on skin tone
privilege, on sexual differences, on religion, on class.
We have had the blues, we have blown the blues away and we have
blown others away as well. We need deny none of that to arrive at the
fact that ours is still the most admirable nation in the world. This is not
the result of any genetic or class or religious superiority, but because
we have made it possible for more people to come from way down at
the bottom and rise to enormous influence at the top than any other
nation in history.
So while we should listen seriously to those Americans who talk of
world opinion as the concluding war in Iraq is assessed, we also should
understand that most of the world gets only the information its leaders
allow and that world opinion is not defined by votes in the United
If any American administration is given to the ever-available demons
of folly, corruption, mediocrity and incompetence, our nation will pull
As usual, no matter how slowly we may go about it, we will save
ourselves. We always have, sooner or later. That's how it is.
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JWR contributor and cultural icon Stanley Crouch is a columnist for The New York Daily News. He is the author of, among others, The All-American Skin Game, Or, the Decoy
of Race: The Long and the Short of It, 1990-1994, Always in Pursuit: Fresh American
Perspectives, and Don't the Moon Look Lonesome: A Novel in Blues and Swing. Send your comments by clicking here.
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