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A special place called ‘America’

You’ll be reading this on Wednesday, the day after the election. I’m privileged to be able to catch you on this day, a day when some of us are ecstatic and others of us are down. As I write this I have no idea of the vote for the Senate, House or president, and have no idea on which side you fall, but I want to leave you with a few thoughts about our country, which is, when you think about it, all that matters.

No matter the outcome of the election you are an American first, as are your children and maybe your grandchildren. You go about your business each day trying to make things better for yourselves and your families. You live in the most wonderful country the world has ever seen or imagined and your principles are as solid as the rock on which Mount Rushmore was carved.

Realize those principles for which you stand. Go to work and continue to make life better for yourself and those you love. Washington is a long way away and can, in some ways, influence each of us, but in the end it’s what we do each day that makes the difference in who we are as Americans.

Love one another, show kindness, patience, generosity and the virtues that have always made us a great people, unselfish and unafraid to give to others. We are not one person; we are many people represented by a few and we are much more alike than different. One of the things that keeps us together is a love of this place, America.

We make it what it is and we can show that kind of love to anyone who cares to listen. Read the words of “America the Beautiful”: “O beautiful for heroes proved, in liberating strife. Who more than self their country loved and mercy more than life! America! America! May God thy gold refine, till all success be nobleness and every gain divine.”

Then see our country for what it is, a refuge, a second chance, safety, peace, comfort, love and the sacrifices of so many — it brings one to tears. Continue to hold your head high for we are the best, the most generous, loving and sacrificial nation the world has ever or will ever know.

Believe in America, her loving kindness and greatness and pass that on to your little ones as they attend school and church and continue to believe that going to church is a good thing. And yes, we are a Christian nation, founded on Christian beliefs and the virtues eschewed by those who came before us.

We are a great people, no matter what our political affiliation. Remember the sacrifices our loved ones have made over the years — too many to count — for those who have nowhere to turn. Stop and think about this beautiful America, the country that provides a venue for countless numbers to become whatever they choose to be. The country that has provided the world with leadership based on our principles of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

We are the world’s leader in every endeavor the mind can conceive, with nods to others of course, but with the knowledge that without America, the world resides in chaos, anarchy and becomes a place in which no one wishes to live. Yes, we are America and who are we, if not free? Free to become, to dream, to weep for those we love, and yes, those lost providing safety for others.

And who fills ours shoes when we are no more? Who fills the boots of those fighting wars for the safety of others? Who saves the child from terror, the mother from loss of a child, who provides for a world searching for meaning? America. That’s us. That’s who we are regardless of how you feel this morning, remember these things. Each of you is important and precious. Each of you can make a difference. May God bless this wonderful land.

Sonny Harmon is a professor emeritus at Georgia Military College. Visit his blog at http://sharmon09.blogspot.com.