What is the difference between the U.S. and America? Let’s find out together!
Some people may think that the U.S. and America are two different nations. However, it is not true and both refer to the same nation. Therefore, there is no difference between these names. The official name of the country is the United States of America (in short, the USA, the U.S. or America). It consists of fifty states and a federal district. Forty-eight states are located on the territory between Canada and Mexico. The other two can be found in Alaska and the archipelago of Hawaii.
It shares the main four time zones with Canada. The US is bounded by the Atlantic Ocean on the east and the Pacific Ocean on the west. It was a colony of Britain until July 4, 1776. Then, the colonies declared their independence, and the independence was firstly stated in a document written by Thomas Jefferson of the Kingdom of Great Britain and thus, the foundation of the United States of America was laid. Nowadays, all the states have their own constitution, legislature, judiciary, executive branch, and capital city. However, they all share sovereignty with the central federal government.
America is a great country for many reasons. So, what makes the USA unique? Let’s discover!
The United States of America is a country unlike any other. One thing that makes it different from other countries in the world is the absence of a common ethnic or linguistic background, and as such does not draw on a single national identity, value set, or heritage. Another distinguishing characteristic is the United States Constitution. It is the oldest written document of its kind that contains checks and balances of government. According to the ex-British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, “Europe was created by history. America was created by philosophy.”
The Founding Fathers believed the new nation was a special place. There would be no class distinction; a place, where people would feel free to worship, organize, speak freely, and it would be possible to build a better future for themselves. Thus, America became a magnet for immigrants. Sometimes their only limit to success (at least in theory) was their own imagination.
Freedom! This is the first word that comes into mind when people think about the USA. It can be found in different spheres: in everyday life, in worship, in preferences, likes and dislikes, clothes, points of view.
The First Amendment to the US Constitution – Freedom of speech – and religion – is guaranteed in the US under amendment I of the United States Constitution, as part of the Bill of Rights.
Washington, DC is one of the places where people can feel free. It seems that there is no other place that so concentrates all of America’s best and worst ideas, its greatest failures and most victorious successes. Exploring the city, diving as if the ocean, you’re surrounded by people from all nations, people who are speaking all languages – yet you can’t help but feel free like in a family.
One of the main American values is independence. Independence is sometimes referred to as individualism. Americans are very proud of being self-reliant or being able to take care of themselves, and they tend to think others should be self-reliant as well. When somebody reaches a goal, that is typically the result of his or her own hard work. This is different than in many other cultures which are more collective. Collective cultures tend to see accomplishments as a reflection of an entire family or community.
American children tend to leave the home earlier than in other cultures. For example, after graduating from high school, many children move out to go to college or start working. If they continued to live at home, they might be asked to pay rent or contribute to the house.
Americans value privacy and their own space. While in some cultures wanting privacy may be seen as a not very good thing, many Americans like spending time alone and maybe private about certain topics. In conversations, many Americans are private about certain things and do not want to talk about them, such as their age, how much money they make, or their political, sexual, and religious views. Some people do not like talking about these subjects in public because they are worried it will cause people to argue. Thus, Americans often give each other more space in public situations than people in other cultures. They tend to stand with a bit of space between them, typically the distance of an outstretched arm.
Many Americans have fences around their houses to ensure they have privacy. If the children lose a ball or other toy over a neighbor’s fence, it is completely a bad idea to jump over it and retrieve the toy. Instead, parents should go to the front door and knock or ring the bell. It will be very polite, in such a way people show respect to private life. If there is no answer, please, leave a note on the door, ask permission to retrieve the toy between 8 am and 8 pm. This is both respectful and safe, as some people have guard dogs or may be very protective of their privacy.
Bedrooms in the houses are usually considered private spaces too. Neighbors and friends are greeted in the kitchen, dining room, or living room. Parents and children tend to have their own bedrooms, and often, American children each have their own bedrooms.
Why Americans value money so much, time is money
Americans value their time a lot. They may feel really frustrated if they think someone or something has wasted their time. Planning out their time carefully, using daily calendars for both their personal lives and their work lives are typically American features. There is a saying in America: time is money. This means that many Americans like to use their time “efficiently” – they want to get the most done in the shortest period of time.
When making a business deal, you may spend time getting to know the other person, maybe while drinking tea or coffee. In the United States, this is often not the case. For work meetings, you should try to be always on time – probably even 5 minutes early. If you have a doctor’s appointment or some other kind of appointment, you need to arrive also on time. You may still have to wait for the appointment. However, it is important you are on time or you may have to reschedule the appointment. But it is okay to be late for 5-10 minutes if you are invited to someone’s house for dinner. Nevertheless, a good rule is that anytime you are going to be late, you should call and let the person you are meeting know you will be late. If you can’t call, you should tell the person you are sorry for being late when you arrive.
Being on time and being aware of time is a cultural difference other people will probably need to adapt to because if a person is late, he or she could lose a job, miss appointments, or hurt someone’s feelings.
Nowadays it is really difficult to find a person who has never heard about the Apple company. Apple Inc. was co-founded by college drop-out student Steve Jobs, and Steve Wozniak 35 years ago. Nowadays the company is the most valuable technology company in the world. The Fortune magazine pointed it as the most admired one on the planet. The drive and imagination created one of the world’s first personal computers, iPhones, and transform the music industry with its iPod and iTunes. All these are bright examples of the American spirit of innovation.
Beautiful nature, amazing national parks also make the country special. People can drive from the seashore to the Rocky Mountains to the desert in a matter of hours, looking at breathtaking views. Along with the Great Lakes, the Appalachian range, and the Mississippi River, these natural wonders create an unforgettable tapestry of recreation and industry.
One of the nation’s great treasures is the variety of parks. People call them one of the treasures of the nation. Yellowstone National Park was the first one in America. It was established in 1872. The National Park Service manages all the parks. There are fifty-eight of them now. Each of the parks inspires with a different vista. People are offered many new learning opportunities: visiting the canyons ( for example, the Grand Canyon), watching the volcanoes, going to the seashores, swimming in hot springs, driving in sand dunes.
The other interesting fact about the USA is that the country has no official language. Almost every language in the world is spoken in the United States. Thus, the most frequently spoken non-English languages are Spanish, Chinese, French, and German. Ninety percent of the population speaks and understands at least some English, and most official business is conducted in English too. However, some states have got official or preferred languages. Thus, for example, English and Hawaiian are the official languages in Hawaii. Approximately more than 300 languages are spoken in the United States.
When in America dress as Americans do!
Clothing styles may vary by social status, region, occupation, and climate. However, there some pieces of clothes that are closely associated with America, they are jeans, sneakers, baseball caps, cowboy hats, and boots. Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein, Michael Kors, and Victoria Secret are only some well-known typical American brands.
You will never be hungry in the USA. It is a matter of common knowledge that American cuisine was influenced by Europeans and Native Americans in its early history. Nowadays hamburgers, hot dogs, potato chips, macaroni and cheese, and meatloaf are considered to be typically American food. Did you know that the proverb “ To be American as apple pie” has come to mean something that is authentically American?
One of the things that are unique about America is how you can become an American just because you believe in its ideals. By signifying your assent, you are ‘in’. Citizenship ceremonies all over the nation show the multi-colored hue of the nation. People also create the culture of the country. American culture encompasses the customs and traditions of the United States. Culture encompasses religion, food, what people wear, how they wear it, their language, marriage, music, what they believe is right or wrong, how they sit at the table, how they greet visitors, how they behave with loved ones, and a million other things shows the culture of the nation.
According to recent research, a new immigrant moves to the United States every 33 seconds. Due to this, the USA is one of the most culturally diverse countries in the world. Almost every region of the world has influenced American culture, most notably the English who colonized the country beginning in the early 1600s. U.S. culture has also been formed by the cultures of Native Americans, Latin Americans, Africans, and Asians.
People will always be the biggest treasure in the USA. Who are they, those who created the history, who influenced the minds and created the past and the present? George Washington made the earth’s first modern democracy possible, initially by defeating a king, then by declining to become one himself. Thomas Jefferson wrote the most important phrase: “all men are created equal.” Ben Franklin was an important scientist, inventor, printer, writer, and diplomat. John F. Kennedy had the vision and the courage to defend the Freedom Riders, to support the American Civil Rights Movement, and defuse the Cuban missile crisis.
Martin Luther King Jr. was an American Gandhi who showed millions of his brothers and sisters the nonviolent path to equality, justice, and reconciliation.
Abraham Lincoln preserved the Union, emancipated the slaves, and led his country through its darkest hour with virtue and courage.
Not only politicians influenced the country. Poets, writers, musicians, novelists, humorists, singers, actors and actresses, industrials, sportsmen also played a great role in the country formation.
There are some quotes about America:
“It has been said that democracy is the worst form of government except for all the others that have been tried”,
“Part of America’s genius has always been its ability to absorb newcomers, to forge a national identity out of the disparate lot that arrived on our shores”, Barack Obama.
“America did not invent human rights. In a very real sense, it is the other way round. Human rights invented America”,
Here is the video that shows why America is a great country:
To sum it up, things that make America great and unique are really not only things, they are people, who work every day to make their country better, people who treasure their own time and their partner’s time, people who feel free in all spheres of life.
Are there any differences between the USA and America?
Basically, there is no difference. The official name of the country is the United States of America ( the USA, the US or America in short).
Why is America a great country?
It has got a completely different way of life. People treasure their time, their privacy, and their individualism.
Who are the most famous Americans?
They are the people who created the history, culture, traditions.