This is just a quick note.
It is a reminder to me as much as to any American.
Be thankful every day for the good fortune we have to be citizens of the USA. Our freedom is the the most valuable asset we have. It is not a luxury, or an item to hide away, it is an action: "Be free". It is a dynamic process, and an ongoing struggle: if we are complacent we will lose it, ceding it to those who would take it from us in exchange for financial gain, isolationism, religious exclusion, xenophobia, or a false sense of protection. The pursuit of happiness is not a static gift, it is a continual chase. We have the right not to happiness itself, but to always pursue it, always striving to make our lives better.
We have this because of the wisdom of our forebears who set up this country not only in stark opposition to the monarchy and oppression they left behind, but also around a principle of ongoing evolution of our government, agile, adaptable, and able to change to encompass the unforeseen new challenges of each generation.
Take a moment to appreciate soldiers past and present who have defended our way of life and our homeland against outside threats. Our beliefs, government, and way of life have been challenged again and again, and young men and women have always answered the call to give of their every effort in defense, at great personal sacrifice, even up to the point of dying for our country. That is a very humbling tribute to how important the soldier values our nation.
So live each day remembering that whatever else you are, you are also an American. In fact, your variety and uniqueness is part of what makes us the USA.
Thank a soldier.
Support a soldier's spouse.
Assist an injured veteran.
Hire a veteran.
Honor the memories and memorials of fallen soldiers.
Keep your neighbors working by buying American; you have a choice.
Speak out and exercise your free speech.
Protect those who are weak and small in number; do not watch them be threatened.
Obey all the laws, and fight to have the stupid ones struck down.
Get involved in local government.
Keep our communities safe for children.
Look out for your neighbors.
Be generous to our nation's poor; support programs that would elevate them from poverty.
Be compassionate to the prisoner; support programs that prevent crime and rehabilitate.
Serve on jury duty.
We all have an immigrant ancestor; recognize growth and innovation in new immigrants.
Remember we must be a good global neighbor, both as an example, and as a supporting friend.
Treasure the wide and varied paradise of parks and natural territories in our nation.
Plan to save and provide for your own future and your children's future.
Do not begrudge support of the elderly and students who do not have resources.