Friday, July 04, 2008

Two visions of America

Today is our national birthday.

For some years now, I have spent this day in quiet reflection - in prayer for our nation, for all her citizens and for all affected by her actions. This year is no exception.

I found the following a few minutes ago and want to share it with you:

There are two visions of America. One precedes our founding fathers and finds its roots in the harshness of our puritan past. It is very suspicious of freedom, uncomfortable with diversity, hostile to science, unfriendly to reason, contemptuous of personal autonomy. It sees America as a religious nation. It views patriotism as allegiance to God. It secretly adores coercion and conformity. Despite our constitution, despite the legacy of the Enlightenment, it appeals to millions of Americans and threatens our freedom.

The other vision finds its roots in the spirit of our founding revolution and in the leaders of this nation who embraced the age of reason. It loves freedom, encourages diversity, embraces science and affirms the dignity and rights of every individual. It sees America as a moral nation, neither completely religious nor completely secular. It defines patriotism as love of country and of the people who make it strong. It defends all citizens against unjust coercion and irrational conformity.

This second vision is our vision. It is the vision of a free society. We must be bold enough to proclaim it and strong enough to defend it against all its enemies.

May this Fourth of July be a day of both celebration and reflection for you.

And may there truly be liberty and justice for all!

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous12:13 PM

    Thank you for finding and sharing this Ellie.
    annie c


New policy: Anonymous posts must be signed or they will be deleted. Pick a name, any name (it could be Paperclip or Doorknob), but identify yourself in some way. Thank you.