Happy Fourth of July

As our country celebrates its 244th year of independence, we want to wish you and your loved ones a safe and happy holiday.
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As our country celebrates its 244th year of independence, we want to wish you and your loved ones a safe and happy holiday.

We’re halfway through one of the most difficult years in our history. The global pandemic has killed a staggering number in the USA and worldwide and sickened even more. For some of us, unemployment and hardship is a reasonable fear. For others, it’s a stark reality. You don’t want to say things like ‘with no end in sight’ but it’s true….nobody knows how long this will last or what we will look like when it’s finally over.

All of our lives have been disrupted, or upended. The shorthand for this phenomenon is that “we’re in this together”. The irony, of course, is that it’s dangerous for us to physically be together. We’ve got to tap in to our collective American spirit, instead, and commune a different way. For a while, until it’s safer. It’s not time to lose hope, it’s time to focus on doing the right thing.

Social distancing, wearing a mask, staying home if you can, supporting essential workers and protecting the vulnerable and less fortunate…these are the ways to exemplify patriotic American values right now. We’ll barbecue and watch fireworks together next year.

Amid the pain of the sudden pandemic, we’re reckoning as a country with some old and pernicious American injustices, too. Systemic racism, misogyny, selfishness, corruption, greed, and irrational partisanship all must be dismantled and replaced with solutions that champion fairness and cooperation. Again, it’s not time to lose hope, it’s time to focus on doing the right thing.

Americans are innovative, hardworking people who love their friends and families. Far from perfect, but we can learn from our mistakes so that tomorrow we show up better. We need to act with urgency to solve these hidden-in-plain-sight problems with hard work, creativity, and a greater love for the people who make up our extended family: our country. Make it about people, not politics. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

This is how we will defeat racism, corruption, and Covid-19 in the second half of 2020. Let’s get those bugs out of the American system, for good. Kick them out of the barbecue. Wear a mask, support Black Lives Matter, vote wisely, and be generous to those who are struggling economically.

Thank you for being here.

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy. 

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Life has got a habit of not standing hitched. You got to ride it like you find it. You got to change with it. If a day goes by that don’t change some of your old notions for new ones, that is just about like trying to milk a dead cow.”

Woody Guthrie

“Somewhere inside you is that free person I’m talking about. Locate her and let her do some good in the world.”

Toni Morrison

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