Two-hundred and forty-one years ago today, the Founding Fathers of this nations signed the Declaration of Independence which outlines the reasons that the thirteen original colonies separated from England. On this anniversary of our nation’s founding, let us remember what makes America great and separates it from the rest of the world.
We must remember that this nation is called the United States of America and although divisiveness and political frustrations tend to boil over at times, we have a responsibility as citizens to stand together as One Nation. Almost two and a half centuries ago, our nation’s founders united for a common purpose: to live in a world independent from tyranny, to self-govern, and to promote and protect the unalienable rights of all peoples.
“We hold these truths to be self-evident: That all men are created equal: that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights: that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness: that, to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed…” – Declaration of Independence July 4, 1776
Let us remember that within 241 years of self-governing, we have always recovered after crises. We are persistent, brave, strong, and determined. Although we may have faltered in some areas, we have the capability to recover. In education, we can enhance access to maximum quality education for all students regardless of the state they live, or the socio-economic class. In health, we can give affordable health care coverage to all Americans by standing united for lower premiums, deductibles, and pragmatic policies that help all American families. We can show the world that it is possible for economic growth by helping families at all levels of socio-economic classes, by rebuilding America as a nation who stands to protect the environment and conserve our national parks. We could show the world that this nation stands for truth, justice, ethical principles, compassion, and empathy but just taking a moment and listening to others. We have these opportunities as Americans to demonstrate our power as citizens by standing united for a common purpose rather than separated because of minute details or partisan loyalty. It is the time that America stands on its own two feet, looks around the world, and learns from not only other nations but also history.
America was founded on a new principle of Democratic-Republic governance, but it is important that we continue to be the beacon of light and live as an example to other nations of what is just. The issues may be tough, but when we become too divisive we can no longer have a practical policy discussion. Instead, we look at “political victories” without taking into consideration or the opinions of others. We can start a new this next year by just reaching across the aisle and listening to people who have different faiths, ethnicities, genders, sexual orientations/identities, disabilities, military status, and/or ages. It is the time that America becomes united once more under the leadership of its citizens rather than political leaders who choose their constituents. It is the time that America becomes united based on practical politics rather than party loyalties.
E Pluribus Unum