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Trump’s COVID-19 infection an opportunity for American unity

By Clarence Page, Tribune Content Agency on

I learned that lesson years ago when I, like millions of others, was drafted to serve in the national call-up for a war that I opposed. Many others, including Trump, successfully avoided it. But I served, partly as armor against anyone who might ever question my patriotism whenever I might criticize some bonehead government policy in the future.

That’s right, Proud Boys and antifa, I served just so you can have the right to flaunt or trash our flag as if it belonged only to you, denigrating the very values of freedom and liberty for which it stands.

I’m one of those who believes that constructive criticism of government leaders and their policies in order to improve our government is one of the most patriotic acts that one can perform. That’s also a constitutional right, which is yet another reason to love America.

It’s sad that I or anyone else has to point out principles that used to be taken for granted, but today’s fractured politics have become a national crisis in themselves.

After all the protests, arguments, paranoid conspiracy theories, malicious cyber disinformation and hurt feelings we have endured in recent times, it is sadly necessary to remember the values that unite us.

Those values are particularly important when our national leadership is in question and the health of our leaders is in peril. When the ties that bind us appear to be dangerously weak, it is more important than ever for us to stand strong.

 

Now we face another election — the results of which Trump has said he might not accept unless he wins.

Yet it’s important to remember that even during our nation’s own Civil War, the Union stood strong enough for us to hold a presidential election successfully. Guided by our founding principles, crises can make us stronger. Americans should know that by now.

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(E-mail Clarence Page at cpage@chicagotribune.com.)

© 2020 CLARENCE PAGE. DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE CONTENT AGENCY, LLC.

(c) 2020 CLARENCE PAGE DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.
 

 

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