The U.S. as a Paradox

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  • Topic: Paradox, Contradiction, Truth
  • Pages : 4 (1305 words )
  • Download(s) : 302
  • Published : May 24, 2011
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he United States is perceived by many to be the ideal country. A land of opportunity where all your dreams can come true and as some say, “money grows on trees”. Although it is true that we project this image of ourselves as wealthy successful and happy to the world, in many cases it a false ideology that few can obtain. We base ourselves as a country on freedom and the ability to have control over our own lives. When in reality this is not entirely true. Some say that we have a paradoxical country and in order to assess the validity of this statement we must first create an understanding of the word paradox itself.

Often confused with the word hypocrisy, paradox is a complex word that can have a slew of meanings. Hypocrisy involves a personal contradiction. To be hypocritical one sets a set of standards for others that they can’t reach themselves. Paradox had a less strait forward meaning. I have gathered a general definition based on multiple sources and came up with this; a statement or proposition that seems self contradictory. A good example of a paradoxical statement is, “i always tell lies”. This is paradoxical because you wouldn’t know if the person is telling the truth or lying, thus it contradicts itself.

When you look at the ideological principles of our country you can isolate three generalized ideas that supposedly express the roots of our beliefs. They are; all men are created equal, everyone has equal rights, and freedom of speech. These all seem like fantastic things to have in a government, but as you look closer you can see how our perceptions have been warped. These have remained as purely ideals for many and never became a reality. There are examples of the true extent of “american ideals”, as we call them, in many literary works.

The first ideal of “all men are created equal” is a paradoxical expression right from it’s creation. This was said by the founding fathers when fighting for independence from the British. If you stop to assess...
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