American exceptionalism—the idea that America is unique and superior to any other country. This idea has permeated throughout society for many decades, and has inspired popular phrases such as the “shining city on a hill”. The pure imagery of that phrase illustrates America as above everyone else—we are shining on top of the hill while everybody else is below us.
This image is a satire that is extremely critical of American exceptionalism. In it the viewer sees that one of the characters is asking how the United States could possibly be this exceptional if it has so many flaws, such as high divorce rate. We as Americans believe that we are exceptional regardless of any flaws we have. As seen in the image, when one character asks the other what “American exceptionalism” means, he automatically answers that “we are number 1”, without any sort of thought or hesitation, just like many of us Americans would today.
Many other countries have lower amounts of people in prison, lower obesity rates, etc., so what makes our country so exceptional over all the other countries in the world?