Report from Washington: Celebrating Great Americans

Feb 10, 2011
Celebrating Great Americans

(WASHINGTON, DC) -  February marks a month we celebrate some of our nation’s greatest Americans. 
 In many cases, these diverse individuals have helped shape our country in to what it is today.

This February marks Black History Month, President’s Day and February 6th would’ve been President Ronald Reagan’s 100th birthday.

Across East Alabama, we’re home to great African American leaders and civil rights pioneers.

Tuskegee of course is home to the well-known Tuskegee Airmen who served our nation with great honor and dignity, despite the challenges they faced back home. It’s also home to Tuskegee University, founded by the great educator and leader Booker T. Washington and being led by the newly inaugurated sixth president, Dr. Gilbert Rochon.

Montgomery is home to Rosa Parks whose silent protest on the bus that day was heard around the world.

Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church, also in Montgomery, is where visionary Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. preached from the pulpit.

As this month progresses, we should reflect on our heritage and take pride in it. We should also remember all of the 44 Presidents of the United States who have led our nation from George Washington, the first president, to Barack Obama, the first African American president.  And in particular this year, Ronald Reagan.

In these trying times, I believe there’s a lot our nation can learn from the issues he championed. President Reagan strongly believed individual liberty, American ingenuity, lower taxes and small government held the keys to a growing economy that would help all those that tried to reach the American Dream.

His faith always guided him, and as he faced the final battle of his extraordinary life, he never lost his optimism for the future and his love for this great land. I still believe his words ring true when he wrote, “I know that for America there will always be a bright dawn ahead.”

Across East Alabama and this country, we are fortunate to have a month to highlight those individuals who have helped make the U.S. what it is today.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said in his famous speech he “had a dream.”

Well, I think that dream is still alive and well today.  Those words should continue to inspire us and help us this month as we honor these great Americans.