245 Years Later
I had a friend that used to say a funny thing back when I was in high school.
It kind of went like this:
A bunch of guys in white wigs got together and said, “We’re going to get together and start a country, and call it America. We can do what we want.”
A thinly-veiled bit of humor about the concept of freedom.
We’re relatively young, you know. How bloody long has Greece been around?
In our relatively short history, we have known much violence, and incredible growth.
We have risen to the level of Superpower.
We have given the world remarkable things, not the least of which is a university system that is sought after by the students of the entire planet.
America is Great. I’m going to say this, because I think it needs to be said:
America was great prior to 2016.
Is America perfect? Oh hell no.
Perfection lies solely in the realm of the divine.
Do we have our problems? Of course.
Don’t even get me started on the system of income taxation, my main mission in life!
And we are miles away from true sustainability in energy, still.
And we are sadly not as far down the road to universal acceptance of all of our fellow humans as I would like to see.
But today I woke up, 245 years later, and thought about the Great Stuff.
The purple mountains majesty, for example.
The cover photo for the private group was a lucky shot I got on my own camera of the Grand Tetons, from up a-ways up north of Jackson Hole.
We get to live here, Americans.
Miles and miles of beautiful coastline.
The river system alone is the wonder of the world.
And the people. Let’s start with a personal favorite of mine from history, the guy who wrote the Declaration, Thomas Jefferson.
He was a true renaissance man, having professional-level proficiency in dozens of occupations as well as being one of the self-actualized statesmen of our early history.
Good old Honest Abe. The courage and wisdom of this guy, there’s no denying.
Theodore Roosevelt. His kinsman of the mid-20th century wasn’t too shabby either.
Nor was First Lady Eleanor, a woman of considerable intelligence and compassion.
Mark Twain. Walt Whitman. John Steinbeck. Ernest Hemingway. Will Rogers.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
America is great, and I am grateful to have been born American.
I would be someone, and something, entirely different were I to have been born anywhere but here.
Another thought hits me this fine sunny morning:
July 4th is a truly mid-year celebration for us as well.
The 185th day of the year, with 180 to go.
A time to celebrate our “American-ness,” and for me also a time to take inventory.
Decide what kind of American, businessperson, husband, father and grandfather I want to be for the second half of this gradually improving year.
Because I truly believe that.
We have gone through a trying time that began 16 months ago, and it IS getting better.
Talk about freedom – what about the freedom to simply enjoy life, and do the normal American things we do?
Today I celebrate, and tomorrow?
The Second Half of 2021 awaits, full of hope and possibility, and potential.
The prosperity to which we have the freedom to pursue. The American Dream.
Happy Birthday, America.
I love you.