If America is the pinnacle of humanity, then we had best go back in time because presently:

USA is 49th in the world adult literacy tables;

USA is 41st in the PISA world rankings for Mathematics;

America has 5% of the world’s population, but it generates 20% of the world’s CO2;

Its infant mortality statistics are truly appalling: in a table of infant deaths per 10,000 births, the USA (with 6.1) is one of the worse of the industrialized nations. A baby born in the USA is 3 times more likely to die in infancy than say, Finland or Japan;

America has the highest prison populations in the world at just over 2 million (ie. 0.5% of the population). Significantly worse than the second-place country China, with 1.6 million in prison (just over 0.1% of the population). Penalties for drug use are skewed in favor of white drug users. There are 5 times as many blacks in prison than whites;

Homicide rates are the worst of the industrialized nations;

In terms of foreign aid, America is placed bottom of the top 20 industrialized nations, with 0.17% of its gross national income;

In a recent study of the health of children and young adults in 50 industrialized countries, America is down in 47th place;

A study by the National Endowment for the Humanities found that 42% of high-school students couldn’t name a single country in Asia;

According to an OECD (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development) report of member nations, health care costs in the USA are around double the per capita costs of most European countries. a significant fraction of the population can only get rudimentary health care, and ‘medical bankruptcies’ are common.

As long as Americans are convinced that we’re the “greatest”, we will never improve. Americans need to wake up and realize that the rest of the world isn’t inferior to us. Most countries in the world are hard at work improving themselves. We need to learn from them in order to improve America’s quality of life. Vapid slogans don’t help nor does bullying other countries into submission.

Ron Hurst


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