Patriotism is easy to understand in America. It means looking out for yourself by looking out for your country.
~ Calvin Coolidge
I have been fortunate enough to travel across this great country of ours. I have seen the best that the United States has to offer, but I have also seen the other side. There are countless communities within this Land of the Free that we choose to hide from public view. We, as Americans, know they're out there, but we feel better if we hide it; even from ourselves.
America is, without question, the greatest country in the world. We, as Americans, are always the first to lend a helping hand. We believe in freedom and we are willing to fight for that freedom. No cost is ever too high. Americans understand sacrifice and we understand the importance of hard work. We are proud to be Americans, and at times, that pride has caused other nations to hate us. We are all to often viewed as a nation of individuals who are self centered and ignorant of the world around us. We have been attacked time and time again. Yet, as Americans, we tend to believe that time will heal all wounds and we slowly forget the sacrifices that have been made to keep our country safe.
Today, July 4th, is the birthdate of our great nation. The majority of us will celebrate. We will enjoy bbq's and fireworks. We will spend today with family and friends. Many Americans will be traveling across our countries highways and the majority will photograph today's events. It would be my hope that all of us would take a moment today and remember the sacrifices that have been made so that we may enjoy our freedoms. Let's remember the military that fought in both World Wars. Let's remember the brave citizens that lost their lives on 9/11 and let's remember all of those that are still fighting the fight.
It is also my hope that we open our eyes and take a good hard look at what's around us. We need to remember that not all Americans are living the American dream. Millions of Americans will not have BBQ today; they will go to bed hungry. Our country is in real trouble right now and many Americans are quickly losing everything. They may have been middle class or even upper class this time last year, but now they are living day to day. Homes are being foreclosed every minute. Americans are losing their jobs. Health Insurance is now a luxury. And, for the millions of Americans that have always lived in poverty, this July 4th is no different than last years. It's when we learn to appreciate what we have and work together to help those less fortunate, that we will truly know what "Freedom" is.
Be safe and take care of each other!