Fortunate to be an American … let me list the ways

Published 10:42 pm Friday, May 29, 2009

Many people have asked why the media spend much of their news space and air time telling us what is wrong with America, especially during the country’s current economic conditions. And, why don’t they spend more time writing and or talking about what is still right in America?

I’ve always believed news is what people are talking about in your community. In the past several months the economy has been a major topic of discussion here and everywhere else.

As a community newspaper we have tried to report how the downturn in the economy has affected the Chilton County area. We have also written stories about how local businesses are doing their part to move the area’s economy forward through big sale events.

We will continue to write stories about the local economy to keep all of you informed, and we hope you will not put us in the same category as the national news media that spend much of their time reporting the downside of America today. My belief is America is still the best country in the world. It has not lost its best qualities and continues to be the hope of oppressed people everywhere.

While the last statement will seem old fashioned to some and debated by others, it is as true to me now as it was during our most prosperous times. Like many Americans, my 401(k) plan and other retirement plans have been hit very hard over the past 12 months. But I still know I am fortunate to be an American and know many things that make our country great are still in place and are strong. Some of them are:

— The belief that we are governed by laws and not individuals

— That we continue to be the leader of the free world and are concerned about those who are not free

— The United Way, the American Red Cross and other organizations that are funded by Americans to help others

— Our freedom of speech, press, religion and the right to assemble as a group to work together to solve problems

— Our men and women who serve at home and around the world daily in the Marine Corps, Army, Coast Guard, Navy, Air Force and National Guard.

— The opportunity we all have to work hard and make better lives for ourselves and our families

— The never-dying American Spirit that unites us during times of peril and hardships

My list is incomplete and I am sure you can add many items that you believe help make our country great. When you read stories in the coming days about the problems facing America in the areas of the economy, unemployment, the value of the dollar and others, I hope you will consider sitting down and making your list of what is great about America. Like my list does for me, I hope your list will build both your confidence and your pride in our country.

– Mike can be reached at