A Debt of Gratitude   Leave a comment

This week I spent the last five days in Washington, DC.  I went there to participate in a leadership conference.  The conference was great and I had the privilege of listening to some wonderful speakers and hearing ideas regarding leadership in today’s climate.  In addition, to the conference, I took opportunities during any free time that I had to explore our nation’s capital.  This is the third time in my life that I have been in DC and each time I find myself extremely humbled and moved.

As I walked along the National Mall and visited a few places off of the Mall, I was reminded how fortunate I am to live in the nation in which I live.  I am moved with a sense of gratitude that I owe to the men and women who have shaped our nation.  I am moved with a sense of gratitude that I owe the women and men who have defended and preserved this great nation.  When a person walks among the monuments to some of these individuals it is difficult to not be moved to tears.  When I stand and face the Capitol or Supreme Court or White House, I stand in awe of what work is done in each of these locations and what each of these locations represent.

During this election season, it is very easy for me to get tired of all the political ads and phone calls.  I easily can get frustrated with our election process and the way that campaigns seem to manipulate facts and ideas to shine a negative light upon their opponent and show their candidates as being above all reproach.  I can question if there is any value in my single vote.  But a trip to our nation’s capital places all of this in a different light.  My vote is not just a right and privilege, my vote is a responsibility.  I owe it to all the men and women who have over 225+ years worked at creating a government system and defended the principles of such a government.  It is my responsibility to actively participate in the freedom and ideals communicated in the preamble of our nation’s Constitution… “WE, THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES….

So let me say THANK YOU to all those who have:

  • written and spoke about the ideals of freedom and justice for all peoples.
  • labored to establish laws and programs that support those ideals and principles.
  • led and struggled through difficult discussions about moving ideals and principles into practical actions.
  • fought for protection of the rights and privileges of every free person and those yet to be freed.
  • given life and limb to remove any threat to the ideas of freedom for all.
  • heard the call of service to the nation as a soldier and/or leader.

I am proud to be a citizen of the United States of America.  I am proud to have spent time once again in the capital of a great nation.  Even though our nation is flawed since it is a human institution, we still have found the best system of government with the best set of principles of governing in the world.

So I will vote again this November because that is what a citizen of the United States has a responsibility to do in order to honor all those who have given so much of their life to make the opportunity available.  Being in Washington, DC this week has reminded me of the great importance of such a civil action.  I am proud to be one of “THE PEOPLE“!

Washington, D.C.

Faces on the wall at the Korean War Memorial.


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