Wade Davis in his piece “The Unraveling of America” for Rolling Stone:
The American cult of the individual denies not just community but the very idea of society. No one owes anything to anyone. All must be prepared to fight for everything: education, shelter, food, medical care. What every prosperous and successful democracy deems to be fundamental rights — universal health care, equal access to quality public education, a social safety net for the weak, elderly, and infirmed — America dismisses as socialist indulgences, as if so many signs of weakness.
To me, the idea of “American Exceptionalism” has always been a propagandist lie. It’s impossible to be truly exceptional whilst ignoring systemic racism and inequality, normalizing gun violence, and having a large portion of the population prideful in their ignorance and disbelief in science.
My hope is that this national tragedy serves as a catalyst for true progress; where we turn our backs on individualism and fight for the collective well-being.