Letter to the editor 1

Our view: As this Fourth of July week draws to a close, we are thankful for the diversity of America, as well as its freedoms.

Why we believe that: This week, we asked people from a wide range of cultures and nationalities to share their thoughts on what it means to be an American. In response, we received some of the most selfless and positive answers imaginable.

A woman from Peru says every second spent here is better than she expected.

A man from Lebanon says America remains the greatest place on earth.

And a man from Laos summed it up. “We all come from different backgrounds. We’re all immigrants in some way,” Touger Vang says. “It’s the differences that make us great.”

Indeed, it is.

People of different backgrounds, speech patterns and customs challenge us. They ask that we are understanding of their heritage and respectful of their differences.

When we embrace that opportunity, we are enriched. When we refuse it, we miss a chance to grow and learn.

The United States becomes stronger when we bring the best of our many cultures together for the betterment of our nation.

In conclusion: We believe the United States is the greatest nation on earth. But as members of this great nation, we cannot retain that status without recognizing the need to welcome other points of view and live up to the words of our Declaration of Independence in the week that commemorates the signing of the document.

As Thomas Jefferson wrote: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

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