Happy 4th of July!

Happy Fourth of July!

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Today, we get to celebrate that SJSU’s favorite alumni athlete Joey Chestnut won Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest for the 10th time.

Today, we also get to enjoy all these in-good-fun comics like this one:

pinterest.com (Far Side comic)

But as we celebrate our nation’s independence day, it’s also time to reflect on the gift of freedom.  So, let’s turn to poems like this one by Ralph Waldo Emerson to consider what it means to be an American:

A Nation’s Strength

What makes a nation's pillars high
And its foundations strong?
What makes it mighty to defy
The foes that round it throng?

It is not gold. Its kingdoms grand
Go down in battle shock;
Its shafts are laid on sinking sand,
Not on abiding rock.

Is it the sword? Ask the red dust
Of empires passed away;
The blood has turned their stones to rust,
Their glory to decay.

And is it pride? Ah, that bright crown
Has seemed to nations sweet;
But God has struck its luster down
In ashes at his feet.

Not gold but only men can make
A people great and strong;
Men who for truth and honor's sake
Stand fast and suffer long.

Brave men who work while others sleep,
Who dare while others fly...
They build a nation's pillars deep
And lift them to the sky.
Credit:

“A Nation’s Strength” first appeared in Our Little Kings and Queens at Home and at School (Louis Benham & Co., 1891).

https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/nations-strength

Stay safe and let freedom ring!

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