Gwyneth Paltrow Wants America To Know It's No Europe, But It's OK Too

America's fascination with Gwyneth Paltrow seems to have dwindled much in the years since she married the British soft-rocker of her dreams and birthed various produce- and Bible-inspired progeny. Her press coverage has become mostly limited to the basic formula of "Gwyneth Paltrow said snooty thing X," followed soon thereafter by "Gwyneth Paltrow refutes having said snooty thing X; instead said somewhat less snooty thing Y." The entire media cycle began anew with a recent, widely reported quote ("The British are much more intelligent and civilized than the Americans,"), attributed to the actress and allegedly spoken to a Portuguese journalist. Now comes the second part of the equation:

Gwyneth Paltrow is "deeply upset" over stories claiming she made anti-American remarks, and tells PEOPLE exclusively that she never said anything against her native country.

"I feel so proud to be American...I felt so upset to be completely misconstrued and I never, ever would have said that," says the 34-year-old Oscar winner. [...]

This is what I said. I said that Europe is a much older culture and there's a difference. I always say in America, people live to work and in Europe, people work to live. There are positives in both."

We feel so much better knowing Paltrow is proudly American—as she regularly reminds us with the symbolic visual cue of two, bold war-paint stripes of red and blue smeared across her powder white cheekbone—and that whatever sweeping, tedious generalization she's made most recently about the difference between the location of her cross-Atlantic townhouses and the quality of local nanny care was never meant as a slight to the youthful, work-obsessed exuberance of her native peoples.