Consistently ranked America's greatest Founding Father, Washington reluctantly left his private life to serve a country that was in limbo.
In the previous two columns, I highlighted the first seven of the top 10 reasons I wish George Washington were still alive: Washington was a role model for many, even as a youth. Washington epitomized courage. Washington wasn't afraid of public opinion or challenging the status quo. Washington was a man of integrity and character yet just as human as the rest of us.
To commemorate Presidents Day and Washington's Birthday, last week I highlighted the first four of the top 10 reasons I wish George Washington were still alive
In the course of human events, one thing remains certain: We forget. Somewhere over murky time, Washington's Birthday faded away, and was absorbed into another three-day holiday with no distinguishing marks except maybe ... Giant Sales!
Many conservatives point to great modern men and leaders, such as Ronald Reagan, as models we can follow, and I concur with their sentiments. But I think the best leaders lived long ago, during the founding of our republic, away from the limelight and luster of today's politics and Washington drama.
The media, of course, is calling it a resignation. But it not so much a resignation of a political office as it is a renunciation. The 85-year old pontiff’s decision to renounce the power and prestige of the papal office is so unexpected, almost unprecedented, as to take the world by surprise.
George Washington warned us in his Farewell Address about a time in America's future when we might be tempted to discard the pillars of civility: "Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens. The mere politician, equally with the pious man, ought to respect and to cherish them."
Looking back over the last four years, it is now obvious that the greatest symbolic moment of President Barack Obama' first term was the very first moment.
When President Barack Obama was re-elected, the winds waned behind many patriots' ships' sails. My wife, Gena, and I felt that sock in the gut for our country and posterity, too. But instead of cowering in defeat, I believe we need to discard conventional (unsuccessful) strategies and advance in new directions.
Although we tend to associate the modern holiday with the proclamation issued by Abraham Lincoln on October 3, 1863, the first presidential proclamation declaring a day of Thanksgiving actually dates back to 1789 and was promulgated by our first president, George Washington.