Friday, July 4, 2008

Grounded upon no other argument ...

... But that the people praise her for her virtues"
As You Like It, Act I, Scene 2

Happy Birthday, America! Although the virtuous in the scene quoted above is my namesake, Rosalind, the quote might yet also apply to the United States. The core principles that the founding fathers set down in their historically pluralistic society still ring strongly: '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.'

The virtues they so strongly laid down in the declaration of independence and, later, the constitution are the ones that we fight and struggle to maintain today. Like Rosalind, who finds herself in a situation that is neither fair nor just, our forefathers were faced with the tyranny of the king and struggle against bonds that held them unfairly. And, for both, the answer to that tyranny is to unshackle the constraints of the status quo and seek a brave new solution. From the trials and tribulations come the greatest innovations and new worlds - but only if the courage to stand by our convictions holds.

For the next 232 years, let us strive once again to create an America where the only argument against us is that we are overpraised for our virtues.

Much love to my country and its people.

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