America Was the Best Country in the World – Where Did it Go Wrong?

At one point, America was the greatest country in the world. Many of us ask ourselves where this once great nation went wrong. 

Laws & Rulings that Changed the Dream

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We can’t pinpoint one change and say with any certainty it’s what changed America’s course. However, many laws, rulings, and standards have contributed over the past few decades. 

Here’s a sampling of the awful decisions that led to America’s potential demise. 

The Patriot Act

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In the wake of 9/11, we looked to our leaders for guidance. Unfortunately, our trust was misplaced, as leadership used the opportunity to create a surveillance state

Benjamin Franklin is quoted as saying, “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety,” that’s exactly what we collectively did with the Patriot Act. 

Citizens United

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We all know that money in politics is a massive problem, but a supreme court decision made it even worse. 

The Citizens United decision likens money to speech and corporations to people, allowing multi-billion-dollar corporations to donate undisclosed sums to political organizations under the guise of free speech. 

Citizens United was one of the final straws turning the US into a corporatocracy. 

Dobbs Vs. Jackson Women’s Health Clinic

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The Dobbs ruling stripped humanity from 50% of the population, confirming that women’s bodies are state property. 

Women are already facing devastating consequences. Despite desperately wanting their baby, many can’t get medical care to prevent life-threatening conditions. Others choose sterilization over forced birth, even though they want children one day. 

Horror stories aside, the fact that half the population lost their right to bodily autonomy should terrify anyone. 

Repeal of the Fairness Doctrine

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The fairness doctrine forced media companies to present both sides of a story. It helped ensure news was factual and things were reported fairly. 

In 1969, the Supreme Court ruled that the fairness doctrine was essential to democracy, but that only lasted about twenty years. The law went through numerous challenges, and ultimately, the FEC rescinded most of it in the 80s, calling it a violation of free speech. 

Shareholders Primacy

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Shareholders’ Primacy isn’t a legal doctrine but a corporate doctrine that most large companies follow. 

The doctrine states that a company’s primary responsibility is to its shareholders. As a result, many boards pursue profits above all else, which hurts employees, customers, and the environment. 

Burwell vs. Hobby Lobby

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Healthcare should never be tied to employment in the first place, but the supreme court made it even worse by saying that your employer’s religion has a say in your healthcare. 

Burwell vs. Hobby Lobby allowed companies to refuse healthcare to employees if that healthcare went against their religious beliefs. 

While we understand that folks shouldn’t have to foot the bill for things that are against their religion, the outrageous cost of healthcare makes it difficult for folks to get this care outside of insurance. 

Everything about this situation was awful, but the decision that someone’s religious beliefs trump another person’s healthcare was wrong. 

Qualified Immunity

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Police officers rarely get held responsible for their crimes. Qualified immunity is the reason. Qualified immunity makes it difficult to prosecute officers for crimes committed in the line of duty. 

In theory, it makes sense. Police officers must make snap decisions in life-or-death situations, and punishing them harshly for making the wrong decision is unfair. 

In practice, police officers abuse their authority, and with qualified immunity, it’s challenging to hold them accountable. 

Civil Asset Forfeiture

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It’s entirely legal for the police to seize your property, and it’s tough to get it back. Civil Asset Forfeiture allows cops to take property if they have “reasonable suspicion” that it has a nexus to a crime. 

And since the property doesn’t have civil rights, it’s complicated (and costly) to get it back. 

Affordable Care Act

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The Affordable Care Act was a valiant attempt to fix a failing system, but it only worsened things. Healthcare should never have been tied to employment in the first place, but the ACA mandated it. 

The ACA gave more people health insurance but didn’t solve the healthcare crisis. They had the opportunity to implement a single-payer system and failed epically. 

Possible To Dig Out

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These laws and rulings don’t have to be permanent. There’s still time to fix America and return her to her former glory, where everyone has equal rights and opportunities.

Yes, There is a Real Poverty Trap in America

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We often think of thrid wold countries when we talk about poverty, but it’s thriving right here in the US.

Here’s the truth about America’s Poverty Trap.

America’s Toxic Work Culture Must Change

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Our work culture prevents us from leading happy lives. Here’s the problems with American work culture and ways to address them

Generational Poverty

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Poverty is a generational problem. Here’s how folks get trapped in cycles of generational poverty

Things America Could Learn from Western Neighbors

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Is America the greatest country in the world? If it is, why do’t we enjoy the same perks other Western nations do?

Here are great examples of beneficial programs other countries have we wish America would copy

The Awful State of Sick Leave in the US

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The best country in the world should allow people to get sick, right?

America doesn’t. Here’s the harsh truth about sick leave policies in the United States.