This image was selected as a picture of the week on the Malay Wikipedia for the 26th week, 2010. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
When I look at the world around us, I can’t believe how lucky we are to live in this country, during the 21st century. Although we Americans still have a long way to go, as recent events have shown, there is virtually no location, either in geography or chronology, that has or had it better than we do. Our founding fathers were surely geniuses to have created a system so advanced for its time, that has endured for so long, while during America’s history, almost every other system or political entity has crumbled. Being a technology company, we can’t help but note that one founding father, Benjamin Franklin was also a technological genius, having invented bi-focals, the franklin stove and the lightning rod (he was almost killed inventing the latter). As a digital marketing company, we are especially grateful for the first amendment, enshrining freedom of expression, without which our jobs would be difficult, if not impossible.
Looking beyond our shores, every day we read about deeper cracks emerging in the European Union, after a mere 22 years of existence. Farther afield, we live in a world where women and minorities are treated worse than cattle, where humanity’s greatest antiquities, such as those in Palmyra, are destroyed with glee, where corruption is the rule rather than the exception, where disease and hunger are still rampant. In fact, technology has in recent times, dramatically improved the human condition regarding disease and hunger. But this, apparently, is not newsworthy.
In days of yore, we did not have instant access to information on any topic, and it certainly was not available on futuresque mobile devices. Before vaccines, antibiotics and anesthesia, we were subject to plague and pain. And there was endless war, fought not for just reasons, but for the expansion of a far-away tyrant’s fiefdom. Oh, the good old days were not really so good after all.
An American flag inside John Wayne Airport (SNA). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
We Americans benefit from most of the world’s great universities, which in turn produce most of the world’s great technology companies such as Google, Apple, Microsoft, Facebook, Intel, Cisco, LinkedIn and Twitter. It’s astonishingly, that these enterprises were all conceived in America. Indeed, we are a digital powerhouse, the likes of which have never been seen before. I say this not to gloat, nor out a sense of misplaced xenophobia, triumphalism or nationalism, but rather so that we may appreciate and value what we have.
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men (and women) are created equal”. Jefferson’s prophetic words in the Declaration of Independence, echoed by Dr. Martin Luther King, nearly two centuries later, are an equal opportunity for all value, towards which we must continue to strive. But on the journey towards that ideal, let’s remember to savor our way of life.