Monday, July 04, 2016

Independence Day

It's not Thanksgiving, but on the nation's 240th birthday Time lists 240 Reasons to Celebrate America (Right Now).

From national parks to restaurants to education to the arts and the world's most thriving economy, there's a lot to be thankful for. Most of all, we're grateful for Americans' "can-do" attitude, generosity, and openness to innovation, the spirit that still keeps it young after 240 years. A few from the list:

Item #233 - Giving Back is a Birthright:
Philanthropy as we understand it today, however, is a distinctly American phenomenon, inseparable from the nation that shaped it. From colonial leaders to modern billionaires like Buffett, Gates and Zuckerberg, the tradition of giving is woven into our national DNA.

America’s philanthropic instinct is not limited to the rich. The nation’s history is rife with people like Oseola McCarty, a Mississippi washerwoman who gave away her life savings of $150,000 in 1995 to fund college scholarships for low-income students with promise.
Item #64 - The Death of the Bookstore was Greatly Exaggerated:
independent bookstores are actually really healthy....the number of [bookstores] actually increased, from 1,712 to 1,775. Counting multiple locations, the total climbed to 2,311. You can’t even call it a fluke, because this is the seventh straight year it’s happened.

The numbers are growing because business is growing...according to consumer research by Nielsen, that the best method for book discovery is still standing in a roomful of books and browsing–ahead even of click-tracking, data-mining if-you-liked-this-you’ll-like-that algorithms.
Item #52 - Freedom:
Dolly Parton: My mama and daddy instilled in me the belief that this country is the greatest place on earth and that our freedoms were hard earned on the backs of our forefathers. I’ve never taken that for granted and I know that it’s because of their sacrifices that I get to live out my dreams. All of us should see freedom as a gift; my goal is to treasure that gift every single day.

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