With Independence Day just around the corner, Campus Reform‘s Ophelie Jacobson went to Georgetown University to ask students if they feel proud to be an American.
“No,” one student said. “I feel embarrassed to be an American every day. I think a lot of things about this country are really embarrassing, just, like, I mean, racist history, colonization, even currently, just what's going on with politics and the cops.”
“Not really in this climate, like, I'm a black person, so obviously I experience a lot of — you know, there's, like, oppression that comes with that,” another student answered.
“Not most of the time,” another said. “I think sometimes it's just a little embarrassing. We claim to, like, support everyone, but, you know, we continue to support Israel, which is, you know, which are dislocating quite a few Palestinian people, and that's, you know, it's said. I don't know.”
“No. Be proud of what?” a fourth student answered. “And what is there to be proud about if you're black and being, like, you know, because it's just, like, it's still a lot of stuff that goes on for black people.”
“I think that's a complicated question for me,” another student said. “I think most of the time, no, at least over, like, the past four years, it's been tricky to love to be an American.”
When asked whether they believe that America is the “greatest country in the world,” most of the students disagreed.
“I think, I mean, like, to be a white person, it's pretty good to live here, but, like, overall, I don't think it's the greatest country in the world,” one student said.
“I don't know, America is not really known for being, like, the most hospitable place,” another responded.
But when asked if they could name a better country, none of the students could.
“Not really. I don't really know that. I don't really have that much information,” one student said.
“I mean, there's probably a really tiny European country that is thriving,” another said.
“Europe,” one student answered.
The students also admitted they would be willing to move out of the United States, and even give up their U.S. citizenship. When asked if they think college is responsible for shaping their worldview, many agreed.
You can follow Alana Mastrangelo on Facebook and Twitter at @ARmastrangelo, and on Instagram.