The Phrase "Ugly American"
was used as a book title
Many here are my age. I remember hearing the term "Ugly American" as a boy in the late 1950s/early 60s - before Vietnam. I really didn't understand it. I'm not sure anyone ever has.
Europeans have long disdained Americans. We've been viewed as bumpkins ever since we proclaimed in our Declaration of Independence that our rights were endowed by a Creator, not a Parliament, nor by social contract with a monarch. Few believed our experiment in democracy would work, yet we have persevered for over two centuries now. Many now complain about how Americans must give up their Constitution for the good of the world, citing the Kyoto Treaty and the proposed ban on private ownership of small arms, among others.
Has anyone else noticed how obsessed the foreign media and foreign governments are with the US? Compare the media of Britain, France, Germany, or Canada and see how many front page articles they run about ... US! Today's London Times has a front page article entitled, "Condoleeza Rice The Potential President." It's rare that we have front page articles about foreign or domestic policies, or cabinet-level appointments of foreign countries. I can't remember an article comparable to the Daily Mirror headline which complained, "HOW CAN 59 MILLION AMERICANS BE SO DUMB?"
Is it really
I recently visited a couple of Canadian Discussion Boards. There are some fantastic pro-Americans there, and they take much flack from other Canadians. I was warned there were many there who disagreed with our administration. Jeez, I wondered. What business is it of theirs? One warned me that America's economy was on the verge of collapse, and the US would soon plunge into another Great Depression. I asked him for his sources. Thought someone should share them with the likes of Bill Gates and Steve Forbes! So far, I've yet to receive anything back from him.
Few people around the world find it politically correct to favor America. If you want to get along, complain about the Ugly American - even in many places in the United States.
I doubt they will understand their error. There was no Ugly American, any more than an Ugly Duckling. They were just too ignorant to recognize a magnificent Swan.