The Lonely Centrist

A place for reasoned debate about the issues of the day.

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Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Is White Guilt Paralyzing America?

A fine column by Shelby Steele.

I think Steele has it about right. But although Steele limits his comments to foreign policy, the same paralysis of white guilt increasingly afflicts sound domestic policy.

It's interesting to note that America has become the whipping boy for 19th and early 20th century imperialism even thought the U.S. was the most innocent of nations. The U.S. blundered into imperialism when it won the Spanish War, and was never comfortable with the role. By 1902, just four years after the war, Cuba was independent, though, of course, the American role remained large for many decades. The other major acquisition of the War, the Philipines, was also on a timetable for independence by the time World War II broke out. Meanwhile, I think it is fair to say that there is no nation that has done as much as the U.S. to spread peace, prosperity, and freedom around the globe.

Like any nation, any people, and indeed any individual, the U.S. has its black marks. But these black marks cannot, must not, prevent the U.S. from acting decisively and confidently on the world stage.

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