Why Does American Exceptionalism Matter?

Emily Rein /

In his acceptance speech on Tuesday, November 2, 2010, Senator-Elect Marco Rubio of Florida said, “Americans believe with all their hearts…that the United States of America is simply the single greatest nation in all of human history, a place without equal in the history of all mankind.”

The reality of American exceptionalism was a theme on the campaign trail, especially among conservatives. Americans agree that the United States is a great nation, but why is America exceptional and why does it matter?

While other nations are bound by a common ethnicity, religion or history, America’s dedication to liberty makes it unique. Understanding America: Why is America Exceptional? is a new e-book from The Heritage Foundation that explores how the United States’ commitment to the universal truths of human equality and the right to self-government—as proclaimed in the Declaration of Independence—requires a vigilant defense of the cause of liberty, both at home and abroad.

The media and some politicians in Washington apologize for America’s success and undermine the unique principles on which America was founded, and which have made it great. The Understanding America series provides the arguments our nation needs so we can continue to be a powerful beacon to all those who struggle to be free.

Learn more about the series at heritage.org/UnderstandingAmerica, and sign-up to receive updates when new volumes are released.