American Exceptionalism and European Exceptionalism and White Exceptionalism are all alive and kicking.

"American Exceptionalism" refers to the belief that America is unique, chosen above all other nations by God for a special purpose in God's plan, a nation different from other nations. Historically, it is an attitude we inherited from Britain, which believed the same of itself. Allied with American Exceptionalism has been European Exceptionalism and White Exceptionalism.

We are tempted to believe that belief in the uniqueness of America and its special role in history is dead.

Not so.

Many people emphasize American Exceptionalism, European Exceptionalism, and White Exceptionalism. Just not in a postitive sense. Instead, whites seems exceptionally evil, Europeans exceptionally ruthless and imperial, and America exceptionally nasty.

From a Christian, and historical, perspective, both exceptionalisms seem the product of adolescent either/or thinking. Either a nation is wonderfully virtuous, or terrifyingly evil.

Whites do have a history of racism and cruelty: but so do other races. Europeans have been ruthless and imperial: but so were the Aztec, the Han of China, and Genghas Khan to name but a few. And American history has its nasty side, look at slavery, treaty-breaking, and treatment of Chinese, to name a few. But, every nation has its nasty side.

The strength, and historically demonstrable exceptionalism, is that in our system we can and have changed some things over time. And we have offered more people more liberty overall than any other empire I know.

St. Augustine said it best: all nations arise out of violence, but by God's providence can become restrainers of violence and protectors of peace.