As we approach the Independence Day holiday, my mind turns to the proud history of this great nation. A few days ago, I was attending a conference and several of us were discussing the problems of the world in an after-hours gab session. As is often the case, the conversation turned to politics, a very uncomfortable situation. Politics is a topic I try to avoid, except in the company of very good friends. At one point though, one of the guys turned to me and said, “Jim, you’re the Brand Coach, what does America’s brand represent?” Keeping in mind that America’s brand resides in the minds and hearts of people around the world, here is what I told him.
America’s greatness is with her people
When our Founding Fathers framed our government, they had the brilliant foresight to craft documents that put the people in charge, not elected officials. People around the world have long admired the fact that our liberties make us great. What we stand for is freedom and it is our people that keep us free.
Freedom and liberty versus tyranny
Think about it. We’re free to live where we want, do what we want, speak out against the government and become whatever we choose. Compared to other nations, America is the model they desire to follow. Sadly, many of those nations are ruled by ruthless dictators and oppressive regimes, many on the brink of collapse, mostly because the people are fed up and seek the freedoms we enjoy every day. Just turn on the news. People are fighting back. They want to be free. Any time a government grabs too much power and the citizens lose freedoms, tyranny ensues and people fight back.
Courage, hard work, risk and reward
For more than 235 years, our country has grown, prospered, and become a great example of freedom because of the courage and hard work of our people. Often at great personal risk, Americans have fought wars, started businesses, grown great communities, and freed the oppressed.
Working in the areas of construction, real estate, and economic development, I’m proud to say I know some very hard working people who take great risks, build things, and create countless jobs that fuel our economy. Plus, they do it on their own. Businesses often fail and a few become great successes that inspire others to do the same. It’s a wonderful model that allows people to accomplish great things.
A valuable lesson not to be forgotten
America’s history is full of powerful life lessons. Please be sure to use this Independence Day holiday to teach your children and grandchildren about our proud heritage and the price paid for the life we live in America. Remind them of their obligation to pass the lessons on.
Independence Day is much more than a day for family picnics. It’s a solemn day of remembrance and thanksgiving. If, like me, you like a good history book, two of my favorites are The Five Thousand Year Leap and Lives of the Signers of the Declaration of Independence. Each carries lessons about the important events and people who made this nation what it is today. I’m sure you’ll enjoy them.
It’s also a time when I enjoy this video of Red Skelton teaching the words and meaning of the Pledge of Allegiance. Watch, enjoy, share and have a great Independence Day.
God bless you and God Bless America.