Land of the Free!

Updated: Jan 5

We should all wake everyday with gratitude for so many things, particularly if you are an American. I think of all who have come before me from those first brave, hearty pioneers, to all who gave their lives in the Revolution of 1776, the Mexican war, the Civil War (almost a million casualties) and all the wars since. Indeed we have been almost at constant war since our country's inception. I also acknowledge all the smart and hard workers. Men and women who literally built this country... the farms, the roads, the buildings, the houses, the energy grid, airplanes, cars, computers... all things I need and use everyday.

This past year our scientists teased out the entire genetic footprint of a new contagion (a huge accomplishment in and of itself).. but then they went further and developed a vaccine for the contagion... all in a matter of months! And not one vaccine but several. PEOPLE THIS IS AN ACCOMPLISHMENT AS BIG AS THE MOON LANDING IN JULY 1969!

I am also grateful for our freedoms... free to live where we want, to come and go as we want and to wear a mask or not as we want. This freedom is key to our ability to create and build what we now know as America. Our country is absolutely the most creative on earth. This is only fueled by freedom. Freedom to choose. Choose your state, your school, your lover, your vocation, your food, your goals, your dreams. Don't like CA? Great move to TX or FL. Don't like the city? Great move to the rural areas, we have so much room. Freedom also promotes innovation and learning... for example some parts of the USA had over 95% compliance on the wearing of masks coupled with draconian lock downs... while other areas were exactly the opposite. This will enable us to infer the efficacy of such measures on respiratory viruses very easily.

As a biologist I venture to say extreme lock downs and the wearing of masks by the public have little effect on the spread of respiratory viruses. Not nearly as much effect as CNN and political motivations on the virus! I love all people and spending time in both extreme liberal areas along with extreme conservative areas was most enlightening throughout the pandemic. One area was masked up tight while the other carried on with life as close to normal as possible. The data will show how this played out very soon. But regardless it will provide a great learning experience within one country's population... An observation only available in our country... and only because of our freedoms.

There are so many ways to practice gratitude and every time you feel grateful you are giving love for something! And as you give you shall receive! I am grateful for the past... for what built this country and the luxuries I enjoy today. When you give love for the past you say to all who came before you THANK YOU! That is giving gratitude for the past.

When you acknowledge all that you have today your are giving love for the present. And what you give you will receive in equal measure back to you! I am so grateful for all I have in my life right now, for good sleep, for health, for my kids, for my friends, for my coworkers, for my Sandy the Dog. For my country and my freedoms.

When you think about the future and give thanks in advance for all that is to come you are paying it forward. You are giving love in a faith practice to acknowledge your belief in all that is promised. Giving thanks in advance is one of the most powerful tools and capabilities humans have! And what you give you will receive! I think about all the smart people to come in the next decade, all the advancements in health, transportation, entertainment, agriculture, etc. I think about all my kids will do and accomplish...all my coworkers will accomplish...all the advancements to come. We will even combat and reverse aging... maybe not soon enough for me! I am super excited for the future and am already giving thanks for so many miracles to come. Fueled by freedom!

Every moment in 2021 is an opportunity to be grateful. To give love for something. And what you give you shall receive.

"A hundred times everyday I remind myself that my inner and outer life depend on the labors of other men, living and dead, and that I must exert myself in order to give in the same measure as I have received and am still receiving." Albert Einstein

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