Why America? A new article series
With ideological division and partisan animosity ever heightening in this country, policy considerations are increasingly taking a back seat. Instead of informed debates on issues—whether they be free trade, health care, or the importance of free speech—the dividing line between the various ideological factions in the United States seems to rest on a more foundational question. This is, whether the United States is fundamentally decent and worth celebrating, or if it is—and always was—broken beyond repair.
Is the United States John Winthrop’s “City upon a Hill,” an image invoked by Presidents from John F. Kennedy to Ronald Reagan? Or, is it rotten at its core, and are the apparent, outward achievements of the United States nothing more than pieces of fruit growing from a poisoned tree? The latter is, of course, what various media projects from The 1619 Project on down have come to suggest.
As such, here at Merion West, we have turned to recent immigrants to the United States, a group endowed with the benefit of perspective, to explore this question through a series of personal reflections and essays.