Granted I have only lived in one other country, but it just seems like the US of A is the best place in the world for anyone to live in. But why is the USA such a wonderful country?
I'm living proof that this country truly offers opportunities for all, no matter where you come from or who you are, as long as you work hard for it.
In nearly 10 years I have accomplished in this country what, in my own and even here, people will spend their whole lives working for, and will die without ever seeing it happening.
I have to thank the USA for showing me what true discrimination is though. If (some) Americans were to live in Brazil I don't think they could ever handle it.
When comparing certain things in Brazil to the US, I found out that what I thought to be normal and OK isn't really normal or OK. In the US I have seen in the corporate world all kinds of people. I would go to work and see handicapped people, obese people, physically unattractive, elderly people and people without common sense and/or sense of hygiene. And the one thing we probably still don't (didn't?) get much (if ever) in Brazil are black people in higher management positions.
I would (and still kinda) find this the strangest thing looking around the office here in the US and at times I would ask my Brazilian co workers, where the hell are all of these people in Brazil? Do we hide them?
In Brazil, when you visit a corporate office, you will see everything nice and clean and well decorated. Receptionists and secretaries are good looking and well dressed. Even the servers and cleaning crews wear nice and clean uniforms. We don't "normally" see obese people or handicapped, elderly or unattractive people working in offices and companies (not at least where they can be seen). When looking for jobs and even relationships, in Brazil, the more over 30 years old one is, the harder it gets, while in the US the elderly still get jobs and can work if they are able to. Elderly people in Brazil (almost) never get jobs.
In Brazil looks do matter. There is a very popular quote from a very popular Brazilian poet that says: "Forgive me the ugly, but beauty is fundamental" ( “As feias que me desculpem, mas beleza é fundamental” - Vinicius de Moraes). So we take care of our physicall appearance, we do our nails, hair, workout, etc. we like to look good!
In the US, we see obese people, like really 250+ pounds people everywhere at restaurants, movies, etc. In Brazil I have never seen an obese person in my life. Overweight, yes but in all the years I lived there (aka all my life minus almost 10 years) I can honestly say I never saw a significantly obese person in real life.
When it comes to how people interact with one another, it's pretty laid back but I still think that (some or even most) Americans could not handle it. Brazilians make fun of everything and everyone... Brazilians give people nicknames based on their appearance i.e. people are called baldie, fattie, shorty, skinny, blackie, whitie, and so on and it's popularly pretty OK especially among friends and acquaintances. When in this country God forbid you call someone a name even joking and they are suing you for discrimination and/or racism. Another reason why Americans wouldn't do so well in Brazil is the fact that if they did try to sue someone, they would probably wait their whole lives before they were able to appear in front of a judge. The courts and law system are pretty slow over there.
Not to mention that criminality and corruption is huge in Brazil while the US people and the law enforcement are more honest and not corrupt.
My comparison between the two countries' culture is very vast. I do love the fact that I grew up with all other kids and was never taught this was wrong or someone was different because they were white, or Asian looking or Hispanic, etc. I love the fact that I have an open mind and see the world in many different ways and not only the white or the black way.
I sometimes think that money is one of the main reasons the USA gives opportunity to everyone. In this country, since each ethnic group is mostly apart from the other, they have to be marketed. And in order for business people to make money, they do need to show diversity. While in Brazil, "the minority group" are the poor people, no race targeted, so advertisers work on the social classes advertising instead of focusing on the "race" itself.
As far as discrimination charges, the US attorneys make a fortune year over year every time they sue someone for suffering discrimination. They make their cut and that individual also while the large group do not profit from it or aren't moving any further after each case. had it been the case, racism and discrimination wouldn't be such a huge issue in this country.
As far as foreign policies, and immigration, I am also living proof of all the fees I had to pay to be a legal immigrant and then a US citizen.
So if money hunger (also) doesn't drive the USA into being the best country to live on this planet, I don't know what does.
Yes, we have freedom of speech here, people are free to go to Walmart wearing their pajamas, go to work in their worst outfit, huge colored fingernails, piercings and tattoos all over their bodies, go to restaurants in shorts and flip flops, etc.
But the truth is, the next citizen might not be so happy with all this "freedom" because there are always protests going on, almost (if not) everyday in this or that US town or city.
Is one country better than the other? Maybe individually, but not really. There are really good and bad things in all countries. It's just good to look at the differences and be able to appreciate them all.
But the one thing that is great in the USA is the government. A Government that works to help the citizens in many ways with opportunities for all citizens and even non citizens, assistance for the poor and minorities and also work to help other countries. It is a government concerned with human rights. The US government is not perfect but it's not led by corruption. It might have been influenced and maybe bought by huge corporations and made them a priority at times but they still never forget its people. So far the US government is deserving of praise and admiration. It is in my opinion what makes this country a really great nation.
The United States of America still holds the rest of the world together, and for some reason it's kind of scary to imagine what the rest of the world would be like without this country.