I hope everyone had an enjoyable and safe holiday. Baseball, hot dogs, and Chevrolet, a great American slogan. Barbecues, fireworks, and family fun. On the 4th of July, we celebrate America’s holiday, our country's birthday. We have come a long way since the Declaration of Independence and are only now coming to grips with some of our shortcomings. We are a relatively young country compared to many others in the world, and we continue to evolve and face unprecedented challenges.
Our democracy, the envy of the world, was tested and we prevailed. We hear it all the time, “God Bless America,” and I believe that we are blessed because we have the right to choose in America, including our elected representatives and the God we may pray to. We have the right to be heard and to peacefully assemble, along with other inalienable rights defined as personal rights held by an individual which are not bestowed by law, custom, or belief, and cannot be taken, given away or transferred to another person. I’m reminded of the song “Eve of Destruction” that says, “Think of all the hate there is in Red China, then take a look around to Selma, Alabama”, and “Hate your next-door neighbor, but don’t forget to say grace.” That was the 60’s, yet much of that continues to resonate today.
So I’ll end with this. I hope that you celebrated the 4th of July and the America that you believe in and that you at least gave pause to remember that while we may have hopes and dreams that are different, we are all Americans and that should mean something even if just for a day.
PS: I had the pleasure to walk the Coney Island Hospital job last week and couldn’t have been prouder of our members: the work, the positive attitude, the professionalism from the supervision down to the apprentices. You have a customer who is getting everything they paid for and more with the Code of Excellence on display. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate how you, the men and women on that job, make Local 3 shine. On behalf of all your brothers and sisters in this great local, I say thank you for your effort and note that it absolutely makes a difference what you are doing. While no job is guaranteed, there is no reason that we wouldn’t get the next job from this customer, and I hope Turner recognizes the Local 3 difference as well.