Essay Sample: End of the 20th Century

Published: 2023-01-19
Essay Sample: End of the 20th Century
Type of paper:  Critical thinking
Categories:  Politics United States Development American history
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 869 words
8 min read

Progress can be defined as moving from a point to a higher level with time; therefore, progress occurs when advancement occurs. A collective group can progress, but some of its elements may keep lagging. For instance, America has shown tremendous advancement in science, technology, entertainment, and architecture; however, the political system might not be so different from the 20th-century government. Also, although America is a vibrant, developed country and a global superpower, poverty exists in some states of the nation. Hence, the term progress might be sufficient for describing a unit or a single aspect, but not an entire group. This essay explores progress throughout the 20th century, and to the modern age.

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Near the mid-twentieth century, Americans hated both isolationism and internationalism even though some Presidents such as Franklin Roosevelt were isolationists. Even though Americans might have avoided the topic of isolationism, internationalism was vast in the nation through slang, music, Hollywood movies, and industrial products (Luce, 1943). In my opinion, Luce's statement is true because American art, machines, entertainment industry, and other products have always gained acceptance in the global environment. Although some politicians in the ruling party supported isolationism and the country managed to keep its internal affairs away from international influence, the nation had to interact with other nations through its products.

According to Luce (1943), we are stuck in an unpopular war - it is not a real, painful war which requires armies for victory, but it is still a war, and we should find a way to win it. The battle is not to maintain American territories, but to protect and promote the nation's democratic principles globally. In the war, there is a lot of dependence on the government for living, and the President seeks to have more power, which might lead the nation to national socialism. Luce's statements support the idea that America is still in a democratic war, 76 years after the article was published. Today, the President has the power to control international trade as he desires; some nations might not be favored by his decision, leading to economic enmity.

A good example is the escalating trade war between the United States and China, which was brought about by President Donald Trump. Trump imposed massive tariffs on Chinese products to discourage imports from the country, as a defensive measure to protect the economy of America. However, Trump's political move would appear as an isolationist motive to develop alone, without benefiting other nations. It could be argued Luce's words, "the virus of isolationist sterility has infected a good part of the Republican party" have lived to date.

Until now, the war to promote, defend, and protect America's democracy has not been fully won. The spirit of freedom comes with good fruits such as equality - the fruits depend on the ongoing war to thrive. States such as New Mexico, Alaska, and South Carolina are known to be crime infested, where no one feels secure in the streets. Although the government puts outstanding efforts on gender equality and national security, equally active measures should be placed on local security in all states. In the United States, there is a growing political divide between the Republican party and its supporters and the Democrats. Some would argue that the nation is headed for a second civil war. At this stage, we are in a fight to protect the spirit democracy; wars are not won through divisions but unity.

The war we are in might be relevant for all and worth winning, but the victory might not result in what everybody expects. Abraham Lincoln described the US government as a system of the people, made by the people for themselves. This statement would make the US election system seem just to all; however, it favors the majority just like the democratic principles advocated for by all. If 51% win, a whole 49% loss; furthermore, the rights of many do not represent the rights of all. For instance, in the general elections of 2016, Hillary Clinton got 48% of the votes from the US citizens, and Donald Trump got only 47%, but Trump managed to win the Presidency. The commotion and demonstrations that came afterward against the victory are an undeniable illustration that the government is made for all by some, and not by all. Therefore, the system might be efficient for winners, but the views and needs of the people on the losing end might end up unheard.

Political progress in the United States of America cannot match the industrial growth and technological revolution in the country. The change from internationalism to isolationism in the 20th century is not different for the ruling isolationist government. Without internationalism, it is arguably true that America could not become a world superpower. Similarly, the economic growth of the country will not depend on the country's isolation from other competitive nations because Americans in the affected nations are also affected. The war we are in as America has been fought before and the fighting is ongoing. The victory will not count unless it is a victory for all. Therefore, the progress that does not account for the success of all does not count for all.


Luce, H. R. (1999). The American Century. Diplomatic History, 23(2), 159-171. doi:10.1111/1467-7709.00161

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