John Oliver: What are Americans Missing out on by Not Being British?

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John Oliver took the opportunity on Independence Day to release a little web special, with a reminder to Americans about the original “Brexit.” It has now been 240 years since Americans kicked the Britons out, and he wanted us to think about what could have been. According to Oliver, this is a sampling of what you guys miss out on by not being British:

  • The accent–the “beautiful vowel sounds” of the British could have been yours, Oliver points out, before describing what he thinks the American accent sounds like. (Spoiler alert: it’s not flattering.)
  • Fashion–the little black bowler hats are also something that Americans probably envy the Brits.
  • The cuisine, like minced meat pie–the British delicacy that embodies the British people. According to Oliver, they’re hard and crusty on the outside, they can give you the impression of composure, but on the inside it’s just a hot f***ing mess.

Finally, Oliver concluded by pointing out the very significant difference between the American sunny optimism and the British cloudy pessimism. It is a well-known fact and cultural difference that Americans have a hard-to-break confidence. Brits on the other hand would “never make the mistake of developing self-esteem” since they know they could never be as good as the Queen. Oliver even took a shot at the Queen, dubbing her “an elderly woman who frowns for a living.”

Generously, Oliver admitted that America might be better off the way it is, after all.

The show is having a summer break but will be back on July 24. Watch the clip below:


Emma Von Zeipel
Emma Von Zeipel is a staff writer at Law Street Media. She is originally from one of the islands of Stockholm, Sweden. After working for Democratic Voice of Burma in Thailand, she ended up in New York City. She has a BA in journalism from Stockholm University and is passionate about human rights, good books, horses, and European chocolate. Contact Emma at EVonZeipel@LawStreetMedia.com.



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