I ask all my American brothers and sisters: What happened to patriotism?

Our forefathers fought and died to ensure our freedom, but today that’s far removed from the minds of so many Americans who fail to appreciate this sacrifice, thus weakening America with dissension from within.

The tenets of a democracy are fragile, but both an honor and a privilege. How would it feel to lose those privileges? Reflect on the thoughts of Ukrainian patriots living in a Russian-dominated, one-party system.

What happened to compromise? Our legislators are vehemently opposed to each other on so many issues and the citizenry mirrors that, failing to establish common ground and shredding the very fabric of democracy.

Corruption runs rampant in government and society. Civility has been replaced by open hostility.

What can Americans do? I call on our legislators to establish more centrist positions, be willing to listen, and give ground. No one party or individual’s polar stance is necessarily right or best for all. Give and take.

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The public can and should adopt a similar attitude. United we thrive and divided we fall. Should we fall, the result will be catastrophic for our democratic experiment.

I ask businessmen who have those wonderful illuminated signs: How about some pro-America messages to re-establish pride in our great country. What a wonderful public service they would perform.

Let’s come together and put America first — first before parties, before corporations, and before individuals, to benefit all.

Only then will we truly make America great again.

Steve Fairbanks, Leeds


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