+
Democracy

People are sharing the things America does best. Here are 17 things they're totally right about.

National Parks? Yep.

america, america does best, reddit
via Pexels

Someone throwing up a heart around Old Glory.

If you watch the news all day, you’ll probably think that America is a politically divided, dangerous, bigoted, contentious, depressing place that’s slowly losing its grip on being a world power. That’s because there are very few media outlets that can stay in business reporting good news. (Unless they’re Upworthy, of course.)

Humans have a negativity bias, so they are much more interested in hearing about the world’s problems than what’s going well. That makes it easy for them to develop a warped view of their country and the world that is much more negative than it should be.

Thousands of people on Reddit came together to make people feel a lot better about being an American recently after a user named KyleB2131 asked, “What does America do better than most other countries?” The post received thousands of responses from Americans and people abroad about the things that truly make the country great.


=

A lot of the responses are about how America excels in innovation and has wonderful topography highlighted by a fantastic system of national parks. Americans are also incredibly creative and make the best entertainment in the world.

“This may be one of my favorite Reddit threads of all time,” a Reddit user named BigPlainV wrote. “Being tuned in to American mass media makes me feel like I live in the most fucked up armpit of the world. This thread has single handedly made me proud to be an American again.”

“The American mass media, I believe, is our biggest downfall,” circ2day added. “Because bad news makes more money than good news, that's all we get. Everything is aggressively sensationalized for the sake of getting views. This makes America look incredibly bad to outsiders.”

Here are 17 of the best responses to the question, “What does America do better than most other countries?”

1. 

"Turning corn into things that are not corn." — rlemon

2. 

"I was going to say cornbread but everyone said rest stops. Have y’all ever had cornbread?" — Admirable-Ad-2554

3. 

"I love the Interstate Rest Areas on road trips. I'm a Canadian from the west coast, and was always VERY impressed with the 24/7 rest areas. Clean washrooms, nice grassy areas for dogs, picnic tables, and a lot of times people selling crafts, or offering free coffee!

"I've only driven through the western states, (WA,OR,CA,NV,UT,AZ) but yeah, those rest areas were always reliable. Always well-marked signs when the next one was coming up. Just made everything about traveling easier! Thanks, neighbors!" — Ubba-Ga

4. 

"Jazz." — PuzzleheadReveal58

5. 

"National Parks." — Big-Win6220

SmellLikeSheepSpirit added:

"Absolutely. People complain about crowds at the national parks, but this is somewhat by design. As you mention the American national parks are very accessible, they have handicapped trails. They have large educational visitor stations. They have viewpoints on the roads. They're meant to "market" the outdoors to the masses. They're a "park" much like an urban park is. Most have truly amazing drives that give a great sampling of what they offer.

"They also have amazing landscapes that see much less usage only a few miles out. People miss the point that they work for both the layperson/day visitor AND the person who will spend 5 days in a roadless wilderness. And of course there are wilderness designations for that reason."

6. 

"Make sure there's ice in your beverage." -- HegemoniHarbinger

DJ33 added:

"I asked where the ice machine was in a hotel in Dublin and the woman at the desk thought I was damaged in the head. She'd clearly never, ever had anyone ask that before."

7. 

"Buffets. No buffet I’ve had can beat the one’s I had in the states." — sueRiot

8. 

"Music — The United States is the birthplace of Blues, Jazz, Rock and Roll, Hip Hop, Punk, Bluegrass, Country-Western, Rap, and a half a dozen different forms of regional folk music. Nearly every culture in the world imitates our musical forms." — Mike the Bard

9. 

"While we have a LONG way to go, the USA is comparatively better than a lot of places regarding supporting people with disabilities." — Kittenesque02

10. 

"The ability of the American farmer to produce food. It is really staggering the amount of food that is grown here." — fat-dum-stoopid

11. 

"Women's sports are really well supported here - so are female athletes. Despite many things Americans might say about it - if you go to other countries female athletics is really almost non-existent." — Juls7243

12. 

"America wins EVERY Super Bowl!" — Leyline

13. 

"Air conditioners everywhere and free public restrooms. You have to pay to use the restrooms in Europe." — SnooDoughnuts231

14. 

"Business. Hands down. It’s their biggest advantage in my opinion. Deals with Americans just get done easier. Compared to other countries American businesses are more open-minded to new things, don’t try to fuck you over, want a win for both sides, want simpler agreements, negotiate fairly, hold up their end of the bargain, etc.

"If you have even done business internationally you really see what a strong advantage it is. Other countries everyone is fucking everyone over, or are close-minded, slow as snails, and obsessed with bureaucracy. Commerce just flows better there." — Stopinstinker

15. 


"Think big and be bold. I am originally from Europe where people often just think small." — throwaway32132190432

16.

"Serious answer? Logistics. We're quite a large country and we've gotten very good at moving things around." — weirdoldhobo1978

17. 

"Chatting, I’m from an Asian country where most people will avoid talking to stranger. But you can literally talk to anyone you met in the street in the US and most of them are willing to talk." — _formosa_

Joy

Thousands of women share image of Jamie Lee Curtis and Michelle Yeoh with a powerful message

'De-condition and unlearn what you’ve been wired to think: that women are your competition.'

Jamie Lee Curtis celebrating Michelle Yeoh's Golden Globes win was an empowering moment for all women.

The 2023 Golden Globe Awards was an incredible night for Michelle Yeoh. The 60-year-old actress had waited 40 years to play the lead in a Hollywood film, and winning the Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Comedy for her starring role in "Everything Everywhere All at Once" was a dream come true.

Yeoh's moment in the spotlight made headlines that night as her award speech went viral. But following the ceremony, another moment went viral—the split second Yeoh's name was called as the winner and the reaction of her co-star, Jamie Lee Curtis.

Curtis herself had been nominated for the Best Supporting Actress award for her role in the film but didn't win. (That award went to Angela Bassett in "Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.") But whatever disappointment Curtis may have felt about not winning her own award did not diminish her response to Yeoh's win, which was immediate, intense and immensely joyful.

Keep ReadingShow less

William Shakespeare and Lavern Spicer.

In William Shakespeare's “Sonnet 59,” he makes the point that there is “nothing new but that which hath been before.” Here, he admits that even the Bard himself struggled to come up with new ideas that hadn’t been written about previously.

This problem stems from the fact that people tend to think the struggles we have today are entirely new when they’ve been part of the human drama for centuries. A great example is how society grapples with gender nonconformity. In 2023, there is a vigorous debate, which tends to fall along political party lines, over the use of personal pronouns.

Keep ReadingShow less
Photo by Anthony Duran on Unsplash

Belgian Malinois, the smartest dog breed.

If you Google "smartest dog breeds," most lists you'll find put border collies in the No. 1 spot, followed in some order by poodles, German shepherds and golden retrievers.

But a new study of canine cognition from the University of Helsinki puts a whole different breed at the top of the ladder—one that most of us have probably seen before but haven't heard the name of—the Belgian Malinois.

Best known as a police or security dog, the Belgian Malinois is a shepherd breed that looks very similar to a German shepherd. Both breeds are of similar height and coloring, but the Malinois is lighter weight and its ears are more triangular-shaped, according to the American Kennel Club.

Keep ReadingShow less
Community

Artist creates stunning—but temporary—wildlife portraits with natural, foraged materials

Hannah Bullen-Ryner uses just nature and her hands to make creatures that are meant to blow away.

Hannah Bullen-Ryner's gorgeous creations aren't built to last.

Some people create art as a way of immortalizing a piece of themselves, to leave behind some creative evidence of their existence and communicate through their art long after they are gone. But what of those who create art that isn't meant to last?

Hannah Bullen-Ryner, a full-time mother to twins, walks to the woodlands and fields about 10 minutes from her flat in Hertfordshire, England, each day as a ritual. She sits immersed in nature, in all kinds of weather, and creates whatever creature decides to "visit" her out of whatever natural items she can forage.

She uses no tools—no scissors, clippers or glue. All she has are her hands and her camera to capture her creations before they are scattered by the wind or washed away by rain.

Keep ReadingShow less
Pop Culture

Disneyland unveils major changes happening to the park, including lower ticket prices

The announcement follows Bob Iger's return to his role as Disney CEO.

Photo by Brian McGowan on Unsplash

2023 Disneyland looks like new rides and lower ticket prices.

Let’s face it. Disneyland might have once been dubbed “the happiest place on Earth,” but over the years that title has lost its merit. Complaints about cheapened experiences are common—from huge crowds, to broken-down rides and even foul smells. This, combined with insanely high ticket prices, has made guests feel like the Disney magic has dimmed.

However, it seems that Disney might be helping the wish for a better park come true, as it just announced several positive updates happening to its resorts in 2023.

One of the biggest changes will be more days available to purchase low-tier tickets at $104. Folks should be seeing nearly two months worth of these low-cost ticket days.

In addition, guests will receive more flexibility with Park Hopper tickets—allowing them to cross over to different parks starting at 11 a.m.—as well as complimentary Disney PhotoPass digital photo downloads.

Keep ReadingShow less
Pop Culture

Cate Blanchett uses her award acceptance speech to call for abolishing televised awards

“I would love it if we would just change this whole f**king structure.”

Twitter

“I would love it if we would just change this whole f**king structure.”

Cate Blanchett might be taking home awards for her portrayal of a disgraced composer and titular character in the film “Tár.” But if she had it her way, there wouldn’t be an award to take home. While delivering her “Best Actress” acceptance speech at the Critics Choice Awards, Blanchett challenged the need for awards shows, calling them “televised horse races.”

She didn’t mince words. “I would love it if we would just change this whole fucking structure.”

“Why don't we just say there was a whole raft of female performances that are in concert and in dialogue with one another?” she said to the audience, celebrating the “extraordinary” performances by her fellow nominees — Viola Davis, Danielle Deadwyler, Margot Robbie, Michelle Williams and Michelle Yeoh.

Keep ReadingShow less