“The American Creed”
I believe in the United States of America
As a government
Of the people,
By the people,
For the people,
Whose just powers are derived
From the consent of the governed;
A democracy in a republic;
A sovereign Nation of many sovereign states;
A perfect Union;
One and inseparable;
Established upon those principles
Of freedom, equality, justice and humanity
For which American patriots
Sacrificed their lives and fortunes.
Therefore, I believe it is my duty
To my country to love it,
To support its Constitution,
To obey its laws,
To respect its flag,
And to defend it against all enemies.
This poem by William Tyler Page was adopted by a Resolution of the United States House of Representatives on April 03, 1918 as America was helping to end the Great War to End all Wars (WWI).
It was recited by Ann Greenfield who is Posey County, Indiana’s First Lady of Political Service during the impressive and appropriate Fourth of July program sponsored by the Friends of the New Harmony Working Men’s Institute, University of Southern Indiana/Historic New Harmony and the New Harmony Kiwanis.
Ann is of that generation where capable women believed they could best serve by supporting capable men. The demographics of history support this regrettable reality. Fortunately, at least in America, history is being rewritten and the wisdom of such women as Ann, my sister Jane (Redwine) Bartlett, my wife Peg, and many more may be what guides us through the troubled waters we appear to prefer to curse instead of carefully navigate.
Perhaps it is provident that as we face our current challenges involving technology, health care, the environment, military deployments, immigration, equal justice and more issues than can fit in one column, we have in reserve a fount of experience, knowledge, self-sacrifice and wisdom whose time to spring forth is just now arrived.
The generation of women who helped end the Viet Nam War, started us on the road to equal justice, began to demand equal opportunities for everyone while still managing to bind our wounds brings unique talent, experience, perspective and courage to today’s bitter divisions. Of course, huge numbers of women have always personally joined the fight while many others saw their place as spear carriers. But the current challenges require a general call to arms where all the available soldiers are engaged. I respectfully suggest that we encourage women in their 60’s, 70’s, 80’s, 90’s, and maybe even some elderly women, to step forward on their own. Your time has finally come and we need you; more importantly, your country is hurting and it needs you to lead on the field not cheer from the sidelines.
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