By Bill Dudley

Our 2nd President John Adams said it best. “One useless man is a shame. Two useless men is a law firm. Three useless men is a Congress.” John Adams made that rather snide comment in 1799. Has much changed in 200 years?

As Americans  prepare to celebrate our 236th anniversary, by taking trips, having a barbecue or going to a concert, let’s think about why we celebrate July 4th. We are celebrating the freedom to do all of those things. Climate change, energy use, healthcare and national security are constantly being debated by today’s Congress, yet nothing ever seems to get resolved. It all comes down to one key word: Respect ! [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Aretha Franklin[/lastfm] demanded it, we should too!

John Adams and Thomas Jefferson are two of our nation’s most influential founding fathers. They both signed The Declaration Of Independence. Adams was our second President, Jefferson was our third. These two men both had  strong principles, and very divergent views on many issues. They ran against each other for the Presidency in 1800. It was one of the dirtiest political contests in history. After Jefferson defeated Adams, the two former allies in the founding of our country, didn’t speak to each for many years.

After both had retired from politics, it took awhile but they started communicating thru letters. Both realized much later in life that they actually were on the same team. Adams and Jefferson had something that is lacking in many of today’s politicians, a mutual respect for each other. They didn’t agree on many issues, but overcame those differences to become lifelong friends once again.

In one of American history’s greatest ironies, both men died on the same day. It was July 4th, 1826, exactly 50 years after the two men  signed The Declaration Of Independence. As Americans  we all have 3 things in common. (1) Everyone is born naked, (2) everyone must die (3) and we are all on the same team. The sooner we realize that, the more we will accomplish.

Have a Happy 4th Of July !


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