Your Voice Makes a Differenceby
this country, every year at this time we stop to celebrate the Fourth of July.
This is a good thing. We have a lot to be thankful for and a national holiday
is only fitting to honor our esteemed forefathers who endangered their lives and
fortunes to pave the way to our freedom from the tyrannical practices of old King
Now we are some 231 years later and what have we achieved
in the interim?
For one, we are still a free nation. That is to say we
are not nor have we been conquered by some outside country in the passing years.
We can argue about immigration at some other point in time. We still have certain
fundamental liberties which others throughout the world only wish they had. We
can speak out against our government without the threat of going to jail. We can
worship as we please and honor our version of God, whether it is a supreme being
or a tree. We have certain rights that belong to us that no one else in the world
So whatís the point of this? Well, each day I pick up the paper or
watch the television and I am besieged with negative social issues confronting
us at any one given time. What to do about immigration? How to wrap up the war
in Iraq? What to do about abortions? How do we educate our children? How do we
stop pollution? What can we do to produce more energy in our country and divest
ourselves of our dependence on other countries? How do we rehabilitate criminals?
What can be done to stop drug usage? How to take care of the medical issues surrounding
The list goes on and on and sometimes it makes you just
want to crawl into bed, cover up your head and stay there until the sun comes
out. You tend to feel overwhelmed by just the sense that there is nothing you
can do to change things or have any impact on social issues that are this large.
Well, if thatís what youíre thinkingÖ..then get over it. YOU do count;
your voice makes a difference. Last week we saw this happen when the immigration
vote was taken. Millions of Americans voiced their opposition to this piece of
legislation not because they did not think there was a problem, which there isÖ.but
because they felt the legislation being offered was not the correct and proper
solution to the problem. On the other hand if more people felt as if it was the
proper thing to do, they could have voiced their opinions as well as those who
were opposed to it. One thing is for certain, the folks in Washington were fairly
vocal about the citizens out in the heartland actually voicing their opposition
to something that was being considered as a slam dunk deal. They did not like
to hear from us.
Thatís my point. I donít care what you are, whether itís
a Republican, Democrat or whatever. Tell me where you can go in this world and
have the kind of opportunities that we have in this nation? I donít know about
you, but I get tired of the naysayers telling us that this country is going to
hell in a hand basket. Sure, weíve got problems. Sure, weíve got issues that need
attention and need to be dealt with fairly for all of us, but so does any nation
that is moving towards solutions for these problems. We need to look at the glass
as half full, not half empty. We need not be afraid of our opinions and our stance
on any subject no matter how small or inconsequential it may seem. Write letters
to your congressmen and congresswomen. Call or e-mail them. Write to the editors
of your local newspapers. Attend school board meetings. Get involved; say what
is on your heart. Ask questions, learn from others and listen to the voices and
hearts of those who have suffered and experienced lifeís road bumps that you have
not shared and hopefully never have to. You might learn something from them.
This is truly the richest and most blessed country in the world. Others would
like to stop us. Others would like to change our direction and restrict our freedom.
We cannot ignore this in the world we live in. We must be vigilant and on guard.
We must also be aware that no matter how imperfect this country might seem to
be, it surely beats anything close to it. The men who signed that document on
July 4th, 1776 were truly men of vision.
We must faithfully continue
to carry on their ideals and concepts in order to make us a greater nation in
the years to come.