My Critical View of America and Its Perfection: Critical Essay

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America is under the false impression that it is the best nation on Earth, which is funny because America is the only one that thinks so. Around the globe, countries strive to gain the respect and admiration of other populations, and in doing so, America is losing some of its might in the international community. From my point of view, the U.S. is not the best country in the world because it repeatedly fails to care for the health, education, and safety of its citizens.

For a country to be considered the best country on Earth, it surely must consider the well-being and happiness of its citizens. Unfortunately for America, the results are not stellar. The United States has the second highest rate of lifelong depression, with 19.2% of the population suffering from this mental illness at least once in their life (McMillen). It has the fifth-highest rate of cancer, with 352.2 cases for every 100,000 people (Sheth). It is the twelfth most obese country, with a startling 36.2% of the population being overweight (Dillinger). With all these health issues, one would hope that America would have a healthcare system properly equipped to deal with these challenges, however, that is not the case. According to an article by ABC News, a shocking study revealed that nearly 20% of Americans do not have health care. That means that one in every five Americans cannot afford or receive the care they need.

Additionally, America has gradually gotten worse and worse rankings for education. Over the past 30 years, the United States has dropped from 6th to being 27th, according to a study by the Pew Research Center. In a study comparing 71 countries, the United States ranked 38th in math testing, and 24th in science. Without a solid education system, America’s children grow up less prepared than kids in other countries, giving them a significant disadvantage, especially in STEM-related fields. If our kids aren’t as smart as kids in other countries, how are they supposed to grow up and be the best? Countries like China, Japan, Singapore, Korea, Finland, and Liechtenstein are nailing the PISA test, an international system meant for evaluating education, while the U.S. continues to fall behind. That’s not ideal!

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Lastly, the number of mass shootings that occur in America towers over that of any other country. In 2019 alone, there have been 283 shootings as of the first of September. This means that there have been more shootings than days so far this year. Not to be a downer, but that isn’t a statistic that a country should be proud of, particularly not if they are striving to be the ‘best’. Furthermore, the United States has a higher incarceration rate than any country of similar size and stature to our own. The U.S. sends more people to prison than even totalitarian regimes like Russia. A country where people commit so many crimes is probably not the number one best country in the world.

Some, however, would argue that America is the best country because of our many individual freedoms and liberties. Certainly, there are a lot of rights available to us as American citizens, but those rights are not exclusive to America. We get excited over our freedom of speech, but 19 other countries, including Brazil, Germany, Kenya, and Australia, have the exact same right. We have the right to an education, well so do 135 others like Norway, Japan, India, and Canada, some of which even provide education for free. Americans love the idea of life, liberty, and property, but those things can be acquired in almost every first-world country. Nearly anything America has to offer can be found in another country. So why should America be considered the best?

Any good thing that America has can also be found in several other countries, and therefore America is not particularly outstanding on a global level. It may have been at one point, but with the world making incredible advancements in healthcare, education, and human rights, the United States is falling behind. If the U.S. wishes to be a contender for the best country on Earth, it needs to work hard.

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