So earlier this year the battery on my car had finally died. To make a long story short, I was stranded at work over 30 miles away from home. In the course of a day I had offers of help from three different co-workers to take me to the auto-parts store or lending me their car so I could go myself and get a battery for my car. As luck would have it, the auto-parts store didn't have the battery I needed. So I went to the brake place across the street, but they didn't have the battery I needed either and even if they did, they were too backed up to do a parking lot swap. However, one of the mechanics took a 15 minute break, walked to my car with a portable jumper, to get my car started. I insisted on paying him for helping me. He adamantly refused. With a started car, I took it to the family mechanics I know and trust who thankfully had the battery in stock. At this point, the day was almost over and they were wrapping up for the day because they still had cars in and the shop was only gonna be open for another hour or so. I told them the car could wait until the next day and that my wife could come pick me up. They insisted on helping me out, by not only swapping the battery, but doing a full diagnostic on the alternator, starter, distributor, and ECU. They did not charge me a rush fee. I was of course, very grateful. I did not do anything to impose myself on any of these people, yet they all out of the goodness of their hearts insisted on trying to help me and not ask much for (or anything) in return.
This is the aspect of American culture that is often overlooked. When life gets hard, in small ways or large ways, there are people out there ready and willing to help. Despite all of the flaws of American "culture" (let's be honest here, America is not a homogeneous culture in the slightest, but a mosaic of hundreds of cultures), there is an underlying thread of empathy and neighborliness that is damn near unbreakable and when you least expect it or don't even expect it at all, it comes to the surface, bright, proud, and loving. America is great because its citizens are great and America is good because its citizens are good and that's something no one can take away from us.