Misconceptions about the United States of America

The United States of America is a democracy.

No, it is not. While the country does use democratic methods to elect many government officials, the United States is a Constitutional Republic. The founders of the country looked back through history and saw that a pure democracy always resulted in tyranny. The country’s Constitution was carefully designed to insure that everyone and every State would have a voice. Understanding the difference between a Democracy and a Republic is critical. Under a Democracy, the majority rules and minorities suffer. If the majority in a purely democratic country is wrong about something, then the country will do the wrong thing. In our Republic, if the majority is wrong about something, then there is hope that the checks and balances built into our branches of government will be able to prevent the majority from making tragic mistakes.

The United States of America is a young country.

No, it is not. In 2026 the country will be 250 years old. While many other countries have longer histories as a people or culture, none that I can think of have had the same system of government in place for as long as the United States. England, France, Russia, China, Japan and many other countries have had several different kinds of government in place over the same 250 years. Other countries, like Italy and Germany were not even countries when the United States was established. 250 years under the same Constitution and system of government is an incredible achievement. The things that differentiate the United States from Europe and the rest of the world, are the reasons the United States has survived so long and prospered so much.

The United States of America is a capitalist country.

No, even if the negatives surrounding the word “capitalism” are set aside, the United States is not a capitalist country. The country does have Free Markets, but even that phrase does not completely describe the country’s economic system. Interactions, including financial transactions, between people are guided by the two greatest Christian commandments.  The first is to love the Lord, your God with all your heart. When people follow this commandment, they put doing what is right above all other interests. In other words, the outward sign that someone is following this commandment is that they do not let the “ends justify the means”. Someone does not have to be a Christian to behave this way. It is the American way of looking at the world. The second great Christian commandment is to love your neighbor as yourself. When someone practices this commandment, they treat other people as they would like to be treated. Americans know that everyone deserves the opportunity to live, take care of their families, and to make a fair wage or profit. They are not solely interested in their own financial interests. They want the places where they shop to be able to make a profit and to continue to operate. The stores want their customers to come back and not go to another store that treats them better. People practicing these two commandments do not conduct themselves the way Karl Marx viewed “Capitalists”. The American economic system is nearly as different from pure Capitalism as it is from Communism. In Communism, the ends are put before the means. Communism promises equal outcomes for everyone, and then sets about achieving that by taking from those with ability and giving to those with more need. Pure Capitalism on the other hand would allow the strong and smart to flourish without regard for what happens to those with less ability. In both of those systems, the end result is similar. Someone decides who gets and who gives. Only countries following the Christian commandments have a free society where everyone is respected for who they are.

The United States of America is a secular country.

Wrong again. As you can see in the preceding paragraph, Christian principles are baked into the entire country. A truly Christian country is one where people of all faiths are free to live and practice their beliefs, at least as long as they do not hurt others and are lawful. This can be hard for non-Christians to understand. Christianity is the only religion of tolerance because it is the only one that confesses that all people are sinners. Every person on this planet is equally flawed in the eyes of God. Other religions teach that man must do something to be right in the eyes of their gods. Whether people like it or not, or admit it, the person of Jesus Christ dominates this world. Everyone counts time from the year of His birth. People in non-Christian countries try to get into Christian countries, but the reverse is not true. Christian countries always eventually win wars. Virtually all of our modern technologies and medicines were developed in Christian countries. Every inspiring story we hear includes a rise, a fall, and a rebirth just like Christ’s life. America allows freedom of religion; that is quite different from freedom from religion.

America should be more like Europe.

American is the best country on earth because of its differences, not in spite of them. Most Americans are of European descent. Their ancestors left Europe for a better way to live, and over the last 3 or 4 centuries, they established one.


19 Aug 2019, Rev 22 Jan 2023

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