For some reason, it seems like people from every corner of the globe, including some of our own, want to blast the U.S. over some multitude of things. In a way, it's become "the cool thing to do". And I'm certainly not going to say America's history is untarnished; Guatanamo Bay, an archaic academic structure, many outdated policies, a stagnant economy... yes, the United States has more than its fair share of faults, and there is a lot of work to be done if we ever want to be perceived as a "Great Nation" again.
Yet, I feel Americans also have a great deal to be proud of. Our Nation's history may be short, but it's powerful. While many see our dominant military structure as a fault, and many question whether our stance as "the West's protectors" is immoral, it has absolutely lead to peace for most of our allies. Contrary to what the garbage in schools and in movies has been telling you for years, our Nation was founded largely in thanks to the Native Americans (as opposed to the false notion that "the white man" came and wiped-out the remaining population). Many now-common standards of social-structure were borne of our Country's politics, and for as small as our nation is (relative to other populations), we've amassed a level of power and control of resources that rivals even the greatest civilizations. And, honestly, you can't really deny the impact the U.S. had in World War II (although Winston Churchill was certainly the real hero).
I'm certainly not saying our Nation is perfect; in fact, the past 40+ years have been absolutely disgraceful to our short-but-rich heritage. I'm not here to preach to anyone, either. But when I look around, I'm still hopeful; I see the potential for a truly Great Nation. I see hard-working people, and I see communities that continue to hold strong. I've done a bit of traveling, but I'm not here to speak ill of any other Country, as I'm of the belief that, at the end of the day, everybody is just trying to do the best that they can. I don't hold being an American as something that's worthy of praise, or believe that we're somehow "better" than anybody else. But I'm sure as hell not ashamed of being an American, and frankly, I think we could all use a big ol' group-hug!