Issue 1: Land of the me, me, me

American individualism is killing our country

Anna Woodward, Editor-in-Chief

Growing up in the bubble that is westernized education, it’s natural to think that the United States of America is the best country in the world. We’re taught that our country can’t do anything wrong. Ironically, the country that prides itself on its “liberty and justice for all” is lacking something that all need: compassion.

In wake of the many pressing events that 2020 has brought, one thing continues to baffle me. How does the American public go ahead and act with only themselves in mind? The American ideal of doing what you want and always having to be special is slowly peeling away at our country’s greatness.

Frankly, it’s embarrassing.

In theory, individualism is great! Being self-sufficient and having the autonomy and independence you’ve worked hard for is something to be proud of. But alas, like many things, America has taken it too far. Freedom doesn’t mean you get to yell at an underpaid retail worker when they tell you to put your mask on. “Basic human decency” now seems like a foreign concept with many levels despite its utterly simple connotation.

Does this go for all Americans? Of course not, despite this being an opinion piece, I can be objective enough to realize that this doesn’t go for everyone. At the same time, do you see this extreme patriotism and emphasis on individualism in other countries? Debatable. I’m also objective enough to realize that I live in a country where I can write something like this without fear, and I’m so thankful for that privilege. That doesn’t stop me from pointing out what needs to change in our country.

Is having to do something you don’t like annoying? Of course, it is. But if it’s for the purpose of the greater good, I’ll be blunt. Grow up and suck it up. All these conspiracies about what the government is doing to take away your rights are just ways for people to justify a need to be in control. Focusing on individualism takes out the factor that unites people: a common goal. With people only doing what they want with no awareness of other people, that common goal is impossible.

If you’re confused on what I mean, look at this year. Everyone wants COVID-19 to go away, right? But, a  common goal has been lost in the midst of “freedom,” if you can even refer to entitlement as freedom. With that being said, I’ll leave you with this: the United States of America cannot call itself the greatest country in the world when it barely stands united.