Letter: You are America


Amid the confusion of our world, I visited New York City for first time recently with some of the people who I love. We saw and did many things including a visit to the World Trade Center. I was moved and stricken.

I reflected on the state of our country and our world as I stared down into the polished marble abyss that had been, literally, a large part of the foundation of the center of the financial world. So many lives, and so much pain. I couldn’t stay long. I would have wept.

Looking back, I know that I should have stayed, and allowed myself to weep. I will go back, and I will weep.

Until I get back, It will have to suffice that I write a note to America.

You are America. America is not perfect. There is no need to apologize for that. National perfection is not a realistic expectation. It is however, a perfect aspiration.

Recognize the imperfections. Address them in your personal life, and encourage those around you, and those who are supposed to serve you through public service, to address those imperfections as well. Aspire to better yourself and most importantly, act on your aspirations.

But also recognize the many strengths of America, the goodness of America, and the generosity of America.

You are America.

— Don Staas, Lima

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