September’s fresh start

Thoughts from Behind the Pressline

I can’t exactly put my finger on it. Perhaps it’s just a holdover from childhood school days, or maybe it’s just a more normal structure of life, but September always seems to bring a fresh start to so many things.

But despite the uptick of September, some days it’s hard to be optimistic and positive about the future. Current events around the world, wrangling political parties warning us the other side will drive us into the ground and the general mood lately is anything but uplifting.

We can find lots of excuses to blame for our malaise, yet most of us need look no farther than the mirror. There simply is no coasting in life. The liberty and freedom we enjoy don’t create happiness; they only set the stage for what we do with those gifts. And if we’ve learned anything from history, we should know the sacrifices of those who came before us paved the way to where we are today.

Look at the recent events in the Middle East, specifically Syria. After years of totalitarian rule, where every move of the people was controlled by a stiff-handed dictator, freedom is releasing years of pent up anger and a desire to test the limits of this new-found freedom. How much have any lives or the world changed since the death’s of Osama bin Laden, Saddam Hussein, or Moammar Gadhafi? Those three men were ruthless killers and treated people horribly, but their deaths alone have not brought about instant change or gratification to their people.

There is no magic formula for the pursuit of happiness and a life of liberty. It’s a process, one that after more than 200 years of existence America is still working to improve. At the core of our Constitution and the rights we’ve been awarded as a free people, it all boils down to the value we place on those rights and the efforts we continue to invest in its perfection.

Dan Alexander is associate publisher of New Market Press and publisher and CEO of Denton Publications. He may be reached at dan@newmarketpressvt.com or dan@denpubs.com.

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