Fourth of July 2020: How to move our nation forward

Flags fly on July 3 in downtown Edmonds. (Photo by Lee Lageschulte)

Publisher’s note:

Edmonds residents Nives Dolsak and Aseem Prakash suggested that residents be invited to write short commentaries — in honor of the U.S. celebration of Independence Day — “on how this country should move forward.” Here are the submissions received so far. Please add yours in the comments below.


My comment on moving forward- regardless of political affiliation or otherwise, we would all benefit from more kindness in my opinion. Remembering behind the keyboards… the anger, the sadness, the fear – that we are all human. This means we aren’t all bad nor all good. Just human. Increasing empathy and decreasing personal attacks and quick retorts would go a long way toward making our City and Country a better place and allow us space to celebrate and appreciate the Country we live in.

Angela Harris 


Please remember what the 4th of July is all about. We certainly should not have anyone steer us into another direction and give the 4th of July a totally different meaning. This is a time many are trying to turn our history upside down. Now for a little humor. President George Washington will always remain our first president. If you have a problem with him on the dollar bill, please do not burn them, donate them all to a good charity.

Carl Brecht


I plan to celebrate the Fourth of July by educating my family. We will discuss the Revolutionary War, The United States Constitution, The Bill of Rights, and of course, The Declaration of Independence.

My recommendation for going forward is to be cautious about judging history through a modern lens. While being critical of it is how we grow, we do not want to throw the good out with the bad. We are a very young nation and have made tremendous progress in a short amount of time. We should take pride in that. We should celebrate the framework that makes this country a haven for many immigrants.

Michelle Ryan


Celebrate the Fourth


As a country our greatest moments such as signing the Declaration of Independence has been achieved by working together,

With Liberty

Striving to manage our problems with a nuanced balancing of individual rights and societal benefits,

And Justice for All

So we can all benefit from living together in a freer, healthier world which we can then pass on to our children and future generations.

Have safe and healthy 4th!

Lisa Conley



While we may be celebrating the Fourth of July very differently this year, one thing is clear: United, we can be strong as a community and as a nation. We must find a way to increase our understanding, our tolerance and our love for our fellow humans so we can move forward as one nation — with liberty and justice for all.

Teresa Wippel, Publisher



  1. Indivisible…..working together for the common good, including our neighbors in the rest of the world. We’re all interconnected. If we’re “great” it’s up tp us to help those countries who need help, and work to move those those who don’t want to get along until the do. And maybe realize that we may not be so great all the time.

    Liberty for all ….not being a slave to money, to power, to selfishness.

    Justice for all …not only for rich, not only for those with power, not only in our neck of the woods, but for all.

    So easy to say or to imagine, but so, so difficult to act out.

  2. It was good to read the thoughtful responses to the challenge from Nives Dolsak and Aseem Prakash.
    I thought each contributor made helpful comments. When we begin to realize that each group has something to offer and that compromise is a good thing we will move forward. Name calling hurts progress.
    As a teacher I am always in favor of learning our history and understanding our form of government.

  3. Power and wealth craving people use hate to manipulate other people for the purpose of getting what they want for themselves. Generally speaking they never have enough wealth or enough power to suit them. This is common knowledge to all persons who want to dominate other people. It’s the old divide and conquer strategy used by would be dictators and monarchs since man began organizing nation states.

    People who hate other people for any contrived reasons are not really free. They are always easy pray for those who seek power over them because they can be manipulated by their hatreds and fears of other people and other ideas. There are only two means to get what we need and want; competition and cooperation. The only truly free people anywhere, are people who are free of hate and open to ideas based on cooperation as well as friendly competition. The minute competition becomes unfriendly, things get ugly fast. That’s just how it is.

    1. Very well said. I would argue, though that “contrived” is unnecessary here. People who hate others are not really free. The rest of what you said, still stands without that word. The saddest part, to me, is actually watching someone convince another person they should hate, or fear.

  4. Clinton, agree totally with what you said. Though think on this… everything you said is why many people don’t support BLM and are being called racists.

  5. There are people who seek power and/or wealth for themselves in all economical and political organizations. I’m sure BLM, as an organization, is no exception to this reality. As I said before in this venue, there is a difference between BLM as an organization and BLM as a simple statement of what should be the truth. The trick, as an individual, is to figure out both when and why you are being manipulated by someone for their own personal gain, rather than the good of all the group within any given ideology be it political, religious, or economic.

    At the personal level, I’ve found I feel much more free, since I’ve tried to not be so dependent on ideological thinking for my take on life in general. I think it is impossible to live without some bias’ based on one’s life experiences, but I also think it is very possible to become less biased and more open minded about the ideas of all intelligent thinking people of all ethnic and national backgrounds.

  6. How do we support the good part of the BLM message without also empowering the leadership though our numbers with the political power to enact all the destruction and divisions that they blatantly say they are for?

  7. My personal answer to your question, Anthony, is a “Justice” sign in my front yard purchased with a donation to the food bank at the Edmonds Methodist Church. To me Justice (actually should read Blind Justice) is the whole point of BLM the motto. This doesn’t in any way indicate I subscribe to or promote the ideology of the Edmonds Methodist Church or the BLM organization per se. I don’t want to see any more videos of white (or any other color) policemen killing black (or any other other color) people who have already been subdued or are obviously just running away in fear for their lives. I don’t buy the idea that these two cops felt their lives were threatened in anyway or that they should be held above the law and allowed to commit what was essentially murder because they wear a badge and blue uniform. I think we should and can be a better society than that.

  8. Who is arguing that cops should get away with murdering people? The simple fact is that as with anything when you have enough interactions something bad is going to happen in some of them. These cops are being prosecuted, the protests did not cause it to happen, they are though leading to overcharging which might let the cops walk, which will prove the need for more protests. We could fire every white cop and would still never get to a zero outcome just like reducing the speed limit will never get to zero accidents, why there are never going to be zero bad surgeries, etc.

    To see change we need to reduce violent interactions with the police. BLM argues that can be done by letting people walk that become violent, which predicatively will mean there will be more people becoming violent to get out of being arrested. We could start calling for criminals to stop resisting arrest, this is why I am much less likely to be killed by the cops than a black male, not the color of my skin, I would be sitting in the back of the police car. Most likely our best course of action is to combine increased deescalation training (which will cost more money while BLM is calling for less) and push to hold criminals themselves more accountable for why they are interacting with the cops.

    As long as BLM calls for the death of police officers, to break up the nuclear family, to destroy property and will only focus on the deaths that further their agenda everyone that supports the good parts of the message of no police brutality and anti-racism are being used to support the bad things we supposedly don’t want. There is no getting around that. If people want to only support the good parts of the message that can only happen by supporting groups that actually believe in only the good parts of the message.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Real first and last names — as well as city of residence — are required for all commenters.
This is so we can verify your identity before approving your comment.

By commenting here you agree to abide by our Code of Conduct. Please read our code at the bottom of this page before commenting.