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American Culture -- Our Greatest Export
“America has no culture!” is a phrase that we’ve all heard many a times in our lives.
As is often the case, a lie repeated often enough becomes an assumed truth (kind of like the tall tale of Janeane Garofalo being a comedian).
When it comes to the American culture however, folks couldn’t be more wrong.
What if I were to tell you that not only does the United States dominate the world militarily and economically, but that our culture is our greatest export?
Not only that, but more people want in to this country than any other, on account of our stellar cultural fabric.
You’d probably say that I was crazy, and you may be right… though you couldn’t prove it in a court of law.
Think about it for a second. Most folks who run across the border or wait in long lines for immigration papers or buoy over here on makeshift rafts aren’t doing so specifically because of our military or Wall Street.
Sure, there are obvious economic incentives in coming to America but I doubt that many of them are aiming to be the next Gordon Gekko.
Even so, part of our world-changing economic might is largely rooted in a cultural spirit of free enterprise and placing importance on the power of the individual.
People come to this country because they view our culture as the best. It is a culture free of persecution, a culture free of oppressive government and above all… a culture of really, really cool stuff. How can the country that created electricity, the light bulb, modern cinema as we know it and the Oscar Meyer Weenie Whistle not be purely awesome?
Don’t take my word for it. The rest of the world has already voted with their dollars.
Despite all of these other countries touted by liberal hipsters as having “more vibrant, historically rich cultures than America,” it is our films, music and franchises that often dominate their markets.
Decades after we’d helped rebuild it, you can find their countries canvassed with McDonald’s and posters for American films. They’ve taken a liking not only to George Clooney’s deliciously scruffy mug, but also to distinctly American sub-cultures such as hip-hop and skateboarding.
Another example would be the place of my upbringing; Quebec, Canada. I can tell you first-hand that you’d be hard-pressed to find a French-Canadian who wouldn’t know the name “Tom Cruise.”
Heck, they still think “Top Gun” is the epitome of fashion… today. By the same token, I could ask you if the name “Elvis Gratton” rings a bell.
… Vive la Quebec?
The most amazing factor in all of this is that our culture has been adopted across the world voluntarily. It hasn’t been forced upon anybody, yet we still see people clamoring to get their hands on all things American because they want to take part in the great experiment that is the United States. -- If that doesn’t put our culture head and shoulders above the rest, I don’t know what will.
Isn’t that something to be proud of?
At the end of the day, when I kick back with some barbecue and a CokeZero in front of a blockbuster film playing within the convenience of my fully air-conditioned house, I’ll say a small prayer thanking God for the American culture.
… Then I’ll go get my can-cozie. Clammy hands are no fun.
Originally posted on FoxNews.com