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Our View: Land that we love

Terrorists with a bloodlust to sacrifice themselves in exchange for killing innocent people live among us. Families so overburdened by the oil and gasoline industry are canceling summer trips.

And, a world away, our brave sons and daughters are dying in an increasingly unpopular war.

America, as these examples attest, is not without its problems.

But, no matter how serious these issues are, the day is drawing near for our countrymen to develop a short-term memory and forget these troubles, if only for a day.

America celebrates its 230th birthday on Tuesday.

Now, more than ever, it is necessary that we shuck aside our fears and worries and mark this day with a celebration of what America is, what it has achieved and what it stands for.

Though she has flaws, Lady Liberty still stands as a shining example of what democracy and the determination of a few dedicated souls can accomplish.

Against all odds our nation was born. And, like a premature child, we have struggled to survive.

However, routinely have we shown the ability to not only persevere, but thrive. We have shown that freedom is the only blueprint for sustaining success.

In today’s society, it’s easy to be misled in believing that we’re a nation divided.

We are catalogued, categorized and defined by race, class, sex and religion, to name but a few. But, overlooked by this blue-state, red-state, liberal-conservative culture is that we share a fundamental desire to see-through what’s best for our country.

We want our children, friends and family to be safe. We want them educated. We want to give the next generation a better opportunity than we had.

At its root, these desires seem easy. They’re not. It takes work and sacrifice. It takes being the target of strangers who want to kill us for what we have. It takes stomaching the opinions of others who hold views polar opposite from ours.

And, in the most extreme situations, it takes crisis to awaken us from our slumber and remind us of an important lesson: that despite all our differences and beliefs, much more unites us than divides us.

This Fourth of July, take time to remember that.

Let the holiday mean more than a paid vacation. Take time to embrace the reality that you live in a country such as ours. Take time to be grateful that you have advantages that millions of people around the globe would give anything for.

Have a good time on Tuesday. Shake the hand of your neighbor. Hug your family. And, wear your citizenship proudly, like a badge of honor.

We’re Americans. What could be better?