At today’s bell ringing ceremony,on the steps of our Petaluma Historical Museum, guest blogger Jack  Withington gave me this message posted on Facebook by Sgt Major (Retired) Al McClymonds, a 1959 graduate of Petaluma High School. Please consider it as “food for thought” on this significant historical day in our country’s history.

“Tomorrow, July 4th, I will be celebrating my birthday. Not as a German-American, French-American, African-American, Italian-American, Gay or Straight-American or as any other type of hyphenated American. I will not be celebrating as a Republican,  Democrat or any other political party. You see, I am an American first, not a hyphenated American or one who puts a Political party before America.

When I joined the Marine Corps as others who joined other branches of the military, and are still doing so today, we raised our right hand and took an oath, to support and defend the Constitution of the United States of America. Our Code of Conduct, in part states that ‘I am an American Fighting Man”. Our brothers and sisters who have given their lives in the defense of our country did not do so as an hyphenated American, or member of a political party, they did so as Americans.

So tomorrow as I celebrate the birthday of America, I ask myself, can this be the time we will start putting America first and come together as the United States of America instead of being separated by hyphens and Political Party bickering and finger pointing? The answer will determine our future as Americans and the future of the United States of America.

Happy Birthday America. Your son Alfred McClymonds.                                                                                                                                                                                                                       I wonder how many of you Americans will post this?