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John Kerry: I get 'uptight' when politicians talk of American exceptionalism

John Kerry says he gets uptight when he hears politicians talk of American exceptionalism.
John Kerry says he gets uptight when he hears politicians talk of American exceptionalism.
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While addressing staff and families in Vienna, Secretary of State John Kerry said he gets "uptight" when he hears politicians talk of American exceptionalism, the Weekly Standard reported Tuesday.

"I get always a little uptight when I hear politicians say how exceptional we are – not because we’re not exceptional, but because it’s kind of in-your-face and a lot of other people are exceptional, a lot of other places do exceptional things," he said.

Jeryl Bier said Kerry was discussing his two Yale commencement speeches, where he discussed "sort of the world we’re in" and America's place in it. Truth Revolt's Ben Shapiro, however, took Kerry to task for the comment, comparing it to words spoken by President Obama in France in 2009.

“I believe in American exceptionalism, just as I suspect that the Brits believe in British exceptionalism and the Greeks believe in Greek exceptionalism,” Obama said.

Shapiro went on to say that as far as liberals are concerned, American exceptionalism "must be stopped, lest it offend." The reason, he added, is that to liberals, "it’s inherently offensive."

Despite being "uptight" when hearing politicians speak of American exceptionalism, Bier said Kerry backed off a bit, telling his audience that one thing does make America exceptional and "pretty special." According to Bier, Kerry used similar language when he delivered his commencement speech at Yale earlier this year.

"But we are exceptional in a certain way that no other nation is," Kerry said. "We are not defined by thousands of years (inaudible) of history. We are not defined by ethnicity. We are not defined by bloodline or by anything except an idea. And that idea was expressed in the Declaration of Independence and in our Constitution, the idea that people are created equal and that all people have a chance to aspire for greatness, for anything they want. Pretty amazing, right? So think about that. It’s the only country that is literally united and formed around and whose rule of law is based on that idea, one idea, and it’s pretty special. So thank you for representing it."

Doug Powers sarcastically translated Kerry's comments at “Lots of other countries accept Teresa’s American Express Centurion Card!”

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