“My fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country”.
John F. Kennedy
“It is now the moment …to recall what our country has done for each of us, and to ask ourselves what we can do for our country in return.”
Oliver Wendell Holmes
These are two of my favorite quotes. I feel that the first part of the quote by Holmes is particularly relevant in todays economy. “It is now the moment”. Boy is it ever!
I would like to clarify what I think about these ideas. I was having a discussion with a friend about how we each view these quotes and their meaning. His response took me a little by surprise. His thinking was that, the “Government of our Country……..is the Country” and therefore he was not very interested in seeing what he can do for the Government. His take was really related to tax and the payment thereof.
I thought about this and decided that our Country is far more than simply the function of our Government. We live in a place where the concept of “Of the People, By the People, For the People” continues to thrive. If you think about it, what we are able to do within the rules of our government, regardless of what we agree upon or disagree upon, is what makes our “Country” so great.
We tend to forget that even in a down economy……we don’t just stop. We don’t stop working, we don’t stop learning, we don’t stop innovating. We push forward regardless of what rules are imposed. Now I am not suggesting that we don’t advocate for the best rules possible to work within, I am only suggesting that we move forward regardless of the challenges.
When I talk about what we can do for our Country, I am not necessarily talking about how big a check we should write to the Government so that they can figure out how to spend it in the worst possible way. I am talking about how we, as businesses or even as a community of citizens, can collectively better the place we all call home. Our Country.
There are many ways that all of us can “do for our country”, “do for our states”, “do for our regions”. Remember, what is done to improve an area even at the local level, is providing a positive effect to our Country as a whole.
The culture of our Country tends to find ways to reward those who work hard and contribute towards the betterment their communities and regions.
Take the time to discover how you can contribute to our great Country, the payback is our way of life.