Lorie Byrd

If the things I’ve heard said about America over the past eight years were true, there would be little reason to celebrate this Independence Day.

If life in America really was as it is portrayed in John Edwards’ “Two Americas” speeches, for example, it would be a horrible place to live. It would be a place where half the people were desperate and starving and the other half were greedy and gluttonous with little compassion for those less fortunate. If America were as despised around the world as those on the Left say, it would have to be a place no one would want to celebrate, much less emulate. Thankfully the America portrayed by some (especially in election years when the party in power is Republican) is not reality.

In America, government programs and non-government charities exist to feed the hungry and to clothe and house the poor. When a child goes hungry in America it is more likely to be due to the failure of a parent to exhaust all government and charitable resources available to them than due to an uncaring society. Billions of dollars flow from generous Americans every year to feed and care for the people of other nations as well. Some people do suffer in America, but here there is opportunity for better. That is not true for everywhere else in the world.

Even over the past decade, the American economy has remained incredibly resilient considering the country has experienced the attacks of September 11, wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, high profile cases of fraud in major American companies, the bursting of the “dot com” bubble and most recently record high gas prices (although the full effects of gas prices have probably not yet been seen).

Even though many around the world focus their anger and frustration at America, increased security at the U.S. border is needed to keep people from entering the country illegally. Many have risked (and lost) their lives trying to get to America. For all the talk about a loss of respect for America in the world, recent elections in places like Great Britain and even France show conservative, pro-America politicians winning. Despite all the election year rhetoric, America is still viewed by most as a land of almost limitless opportunity.

Lorie Byrd

Lorie Byrd is a Townhall.com columnist and blogs at Wizbang and at LorieByrd.com.

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