The Story of America May Be Rhyming


History doesn’t repeat itself, but it often rhymes — as Mark Twain is legendarily said to have remarked.

Our Caesar Can the country come back from Trump? The Republic already looks like Rome in ruins. By Andrew Sullivan, New York Intelligencer, August 7, 2019

This is one of our strangest epiphanies.

But, if Christianity is the story we are in, and your God is the Great Storyteller, well, Paula thinks we should take it seriously. This would be so mysterious.

Because what if your God is putting this in play to put you Christians in America to a test?

And this has been a difficult part of our assignment. Because, as you’ll see, the two simple story questions…


Which story are we in?


Who are we, here in the story?


… keep running through the story of America.

But they also create tension for us, because of the story we believe we are in. The Party is not interested in China’s Christians beginning to think about those questions and the implications they have for our unfolding drama in China.

So now, let’s go explore it.


What is the Binary Core Value in the Story of America?


It’s time to begin to show you how connecting that simple story question to the binary core value in the story of America can help you see America as a story.

As you can imagine, when our team came into contact with the concept of core value, we realized we thought about “values” like most people do…


[I}n everyday conversation, when someone says an individual or institution has “values,” he means positive qualities such as truthfulness, love, generosity, hard work, loyalty, and the like. But for the story-maker, the values he invests in his telling come not as singularities but binaries of positive/negative charge: truth/lie, love/hate, generosity/selfishness, hard work/laziness, loyalty/betrayal, life/death, courage/cowardice, hope/despair, meaningfulness/meaninglessness, maturity/immaturity, justice/injustice, and on the list goes, naming all those qualities of human experience that can shift charge dynamically from positive to negative and back again.

A telling may incorporate any number, variety, and combination of values, but it anchors its content in one irreplaceable binary – the story’s core value. This value determines a story’s fundamental meaning and emotion.

Storynomics, By Robert McKee and Tom Gerace

So, now we’re trying to think differently.

The core value is the first step of Stage Two…


Identifying the consumer’s unfulfilled need in Stage One leads to the first step of Stage Two: identifying the core value that best dramatizes the solution to this problem, the cure to this pain.

Storynomics, By Robert McKee and Tom Gerace

So, what is the core value in the story of America?

I know it sounds strange, but it looks to our team like it is the same one as the core value in the story in the Bible…


Loyal love/betrayal


And we began to see this as we explored your Declaration of Independence. We saw that it expresses a positive/negative charge.

First, it tells you the foundational beliefs from which your nation was created…


IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,


Then it shifts to expressing how the King of Great Britain was the Great Betrayer…


–That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.

But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

–Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government.

The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States.


And look how that sense of betrayal may have been deeply expressed in one of the most influential books of the time…


In January 1776, with superb timing, Thomas Paine published “Common Sense.” It was a scorching denunciation of the “royal brute” in London, and it appeared just as Americans were coming to grips with the realization that they could no longer profess loyalty to an empire that had rejected them.

“Common Sense” was a runaway bestseller. It sold more than 150,000 copies — astonishing in a country with a population of just 2.5 million. It was “greedily bought up and read by all ranks of people,” marveled Josiah Bartlett, a congressional delegate from New Hampshire.

….

He was making more than a political point. Paine was urging Americans to fight for independence not only because George III and Parliament had betrayed them but because they were no longer Britons. America’s people had evolved into a new nation, and that new nation was entitled, by the very “design of Heaven,” to sovereignty and self-rule. A few months later, that idea would be enshrined in the opening words of the Declaration of Independence. The colonists had become “one people,” and it had become necessary for that people to sever its ties to England and become a wholly independent power — to claim “the separate and equal station” in the world that it deserved. And who had authorized American independence? Not English ministers or foreign diplomats, but “the laws of Nature and of Nature’s God.”

The Leave campaign of 1776 reverberates to this day, by Jeff Jacoby, Boston Globe, June 30, 2016

And to help you get a sense of the lasting power of this binary core value as it relates to your founding, we want to show you something Paula Wong discovered…


Do the Loyalty Day Proclamations Connect the Binary Core Value to Your Founding?


You Americans are into loyalty. Look at this…

“I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”


But Paula Wong discovered something which showed us that you Americans have a different approach to loyalty in your country than we do.

Did you know you have a Loyalty Day?


Loyalty Day is observed on May 1 in the United States. It is a day set aside “for the reaffirmation of loyalty to the United States and for the recognition of the heritage of American freedom.”

….

[I]t was recognized by the U.S. Congress on April 27, 1955, and made an official reoccurring holiday on July 18, 1958 (Public Law 85-529). President Dwight D. Eisenhower proclaimed May 1, 1955, the first observance of Loyalty Day. …. Loyalty Day has been recognized with an official proclamation every year by every president since its inception as a legal holiday in 1958.

Loyalty Day, Wikipedia

So now we’re going to show you what your presidents have proclaimed since it became a law in America. And as you’ll see, it’s deeply connected to your founding…


President Eisenhower

Whereas loyalty to the United States of America, its democratic traditions and institutions, and the liberties embodied in our Constitution is essential to the preservation of our freedoms in a world threatened by totalitarianism; and

Whereas it is fitting and proper that we reaffirm by special observance our loyalty to our country and our gratitude for the precious heritage of freedom and liberty under law; and

President Dwight D. Eisenhower, Proclamation 3282—Loyalty Day, 1959

Whereas the existence of the United States as a free Nation is dependent upon the unswerving and enlightened loyalty of its people; and

Whereas our priceless heritage of freedom is in constant danger from forces inimical to our traditional concepts of government, among which is our fundamental principle of liberty under law; and

President Dwight D. Eisenhower, Proclamation 3343—Loyalty Day, 1960

President Kennedy

Whereas steadfast devotion to our country and our Constitution is indispensable to the preservation of our freedom and liberty; and

President John F. Kennedy, Proclamation 3406 — Loyalty Day, 1961

Whereas this Nation, with its traditions of freedom, liberty, and justice under law, is the inspiration of free men and of others striving for freedom and justice throughout the world; and

Whereas the strength and vigor of this Nation is clearly attributable to the steadfast devotion and loyalty of its people;

President John F. Kennedy, Proclamation 3463—Loyalty Day, 1962

Dedication, devotion, and loyalty to our country and to the free democratic precepts upon which it was founded has always been a cherished tradition with our people-from our Founding Fathers to our servicemen now serving in the far-flung corners of the world.

President John F. Kennedy, Proclamation 3528—Loyalty Day, 1963

President Johnson

The strength and vigor of our Nation is directly attributable to the dedication, devotion, and loyalty of its people to the democratic principles embodied in our Constitution.

President Lyndon Johnson, Proclamation 3581—Loyalty Day, 1964

“We hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

With these words our forefathers proclaimed a revolutionary concept of human rights–a concept that permeates our Constitution and our democratic form of government. Less than a century later President Lincoln spoke of the United States as “this government of the people, by the people, and for the people.”

….

This loyalty of our people-their unswerving devotion to our Nation and its Constitution has rewarded us with a heritage of freedom never before achieved by any civilization.

….

Once more we proclaim our loyalty to the United States, our determination to preserve freedom, justice, equality, and human dignity in this land, and our resolution to assure those blessings for all who yearn to be free.

President Lyndon Johnson, Proclamation 3643—Loyalty Day, 1965

Loyalty, like liberty, is more than a word. Both are symbols for deeply felt ideals. Liberty is the symbol for the goal we seek; loyalty is the symbol of our common purpose in its pursuit.

The true meaning of loyalty was expressed very early in our history by one of our Founding Fathers, John Jay, who said:

“This country and this people seem to have been made for each other, and it appears as if it was the design of Providence, that … To all general purposes we have uniformly been one people; each individual citizen everywhere enjoying the same national rights, privileges, and protection.”

Americans, far more than most, enjoy and cherish the right to dissent and disagree about all our public purposes. Yet our loyalty to the basic ideal of liberty and justice binds us together even in our disagreements.

Those ideals and that loyalty have carried us through two world wars. With them as our beacon, we have climbed from the depths of a great depression to a prosperity unparalleled in history. They have guided us ever closer to the goal of true and equal justice at home, and made us the strong champions of liberty around the globe.

At the very founding of our Republic, the signers of the Declaration of Independence pledged to each other their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor. That pledge has been renewed, each in its own time, by every generation of Americans.

….

It is that spirit of mutual trust, and loyalty to those ideals, that has brought greatness to our Nation. That greatness will endure only so long as the ideals and the loyalty continue to give it force.

President Lyndon Johnson, Proclamation 3716—Loyalty Day, 1966

To an American, then, loyalty is not automatic acceptance of authority but consecration to the principles of a free society.

….

In 1967, Loyalty Day has a special meaning. Far away in Vietnam, our young men are demonstrating by their bravery, and commitment to the freedom of others, the ultimate obligations loyalty can impose.

President Lyndon Johnson, Proclamation 3775—Loyalty Day, 1967

We believe in freedom. So loyally let us act to make men free.

….

We believe in equality. So let us do what we must to assure it for all.

President Lyndon Johnson, Proclamation 3845—Loyalty Day, 1968

President Nixon

At the founding of our Republic, the signers of the Declaration of Independence pledged their mutual trust and sacred honor to the common ideals of freedom and equality that have brought greatness to our Nation.

Loyalty to our country and its flag must rest on understanding of our great national values which they have represented—individual freedom under the law, equality of opportunity in all walks of life, justice and protection of the law for all. Each of us has an obligation to fulfill these ideals and to preserve them for our children and for succeeding generations.

….

For freedom, justice, and equality are not ideals forever secure, once won. They require our unswerving devotion and our continued vigilance.

President Richard Nixon, Proclamation 3904—Loyalty Day, 1969

We demonstrate loyalty to our nation, then, not only when we show our love for its ideals, but when we also show respect for its laws. Without those laws, our ideals cannot be reached; without those ideals, our laws are mechanical and life-less. True loyalty to our country means working together toward justice under the law.

President Richard Nixon, Proclamation 3975—Loyalty Day, 1970

In this time as throughout our history, the American nation rests fully and finally upon the loyalty of the American people.

President Richard Nixon, Proclamation 4036—Loyalty Day, 1971

“I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Re-public for which it stands . . .” From earliest school days most Americans know these words as they know their own names. They constitute a solemn promise of loyalty signed in the heart and paid off lifelong in the currency of daily deeds, great and small—from the ultimate sacrifice of the soldier, to the conscientious vote of the citizen, to the productive labor of the working man or woman and the precious trust of the parent.

President Richard Nixon, Proclamation 4118—Loyalty Day, 1972

The meaning of America is rooted deep in the brains and bones of men and women who once cherished a dream that mankind might live in freedom some-how, somewhere on this earth. The dream became an idea, the idea an ideal, and the ideal a reality here in this land. Brighter than the sun, the meaning of America shines across the world, warming those to whom the dignity of living in liberty is still a dream.

Generations of men and women “who more than self their country loved” have given all that liberty demanded to keep the meaning of America alive, both in our land and in the hearts of others abroad. This willingness to give is the measure of our loyalty—it is reflected in how we live our liberty, and how we love our country.

On this Loyalty Day, let us reaffirm our commitment to the great work which began long ago, but which is still unfinished as our Nation is unfinished—to make whole and perfect the meaning of America: “that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.”

President Richard Nixon, Proclamation 4201—Loyalty Day, 1973

President Ford

The United States has become the greatest Nation in history because of the loyalty of our people to our Constitution, to our laws, and to those ideals which they represent.

The thousands who become citizens each year through naturalization take an oath to support the United States. One can sense the meaning and the spirit of loyalty in those proceedings. For most of us who were born to the freedoms we enjoy, a declaration of loyalty has not been such a conspicuous event in our lives. It is, nonetheless, reflected in our patriotic efforts.

President Gerald Ford, Proclamation 4354—Loyalty Day, 1975

The idea that a free people-dedicated to the rule of law, freedom of expression, and equality-have the inherent right, ability, and duty to govern themselves, is one that compels our devotion and dedication.

Such allegiance, grounded in a “solemn sense of God’s superintending Provi-dence,” is the bulwark upon which this Nation was built and has endured for two hundred years.

President Gerald Ford, Proclamation 4431—Loyalty Day, 1976

President Carter

[T]he loyalty we feel in our hearts should be an anchor that keeps us faithful to the ideals of individual dignity and worth for which so many Americans have fought and died.

President James Carter, Proclamation 4493—Loyalty Day, 1977

Because we are a free people, the loyalty we feel to our country is deeper than that which any imposed political or ideological orthodoxy could possibly evoke. And as long as we continue to remain faithful to the principles and freedoms on which our republic was founded, that loyalty will see us through whatever challenges lie ahead.

President James Carter, Proclamation 4567—Loyalty Day, 1978

To the citizens of our country, loyalty means a devotion and a dedication to our democratic traditions of liberty and justice. It is an acknowledgement of our responsibilities and duties as citizens to nurture and preserve those freedoms. It also conveys a respect for our fellow citizens who have fought, and sometimes died, to establish and protect our country and our ideals.

President James Carter, Proclamation 4657—Loyalty Day, 1979

Our Nation was founded to secure and protect the basic human rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for all our citizens. Today the United States is a leader in the world-wide struggle for basic human rights. In these times it is important that we never forget our historic commitment to freedom and justice for all people? Because our first principles are the basis of our continuing loyalty to our Nation.

President James Carter, Proclamation 4734—Loyalty Day, 1980

President Reagan

One of the great treasures of America is the unity of its people. No nation is composed of citizens with such diverse cultural, racial and religious backgrounds as is the United States of America. And while the unique contributions of each segment of our population are important, the significant fact remains that each of us, whatever background, remains loyal to the Nation and to the ideals of freedom for which it stands.

President Ronald Reagan, Proclamation 4836—Loyalty Day, 1981

When thoughtful Americans witness the oppression, even terror, that is so prevalent in many other parts of the world, they cannot help but feel a deep and abiding appreciation for, and renewed loyalty to, our own Nation and its ideals.

Americans prize their diversity but are united in a shared allegiance to our Nation’s tradition of justice and liberty for all. We have fought for these traditions in the past, and we will not permit their erosion in the future.

It is altogether fitting that we set aside a day for reflection on our stake in democracy and in its highest purpose—the advancement of the freedom and dignity of mankind.

President Ronald Reagan, Proclamation 4912—Loyalty Day, 1982

It was once written that America is great because it is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great. So long as Americans remain faithful—in deeds as well as thought—to the ideals embodied in our Constitution and furthered in our free institutions, our Nation’s greatness will flourish.

President Ronald Reagan, Proclamation 5032—Loyalty Day, 1983

As Americans, we enjoy a rich heritage of freedom. How fortunate we are that the founders of this great country were committed to the ideal that all people share inalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. This ideal has been the inspiration for many generations of Americans in the building of what is today the greatest and most prosperous Nation in the world.

The people of the United States cherish their liberties and recognize that our freedoms of conscience and action are at the heart of the unique American tradition.

President Ronald Reagan, Proclamation 5169—Loyalty Day, 1984

Americans’ loyalty to their Nation is especially inspiring because it is freely given by a free people. Nations that seek to compel the love or fidelity of their citizens without tolerance for their unalienable rights are inherently unstable and frequently dangerous to others. Now that the windows of communication and commerce are bringing nations into increasingly close relationships, the truths our forefathers found self-evident are becoming apparent to all: the future belongs to the free—to peoples who are free to work, to assemble, to vote, to travel and to emigrate, to print and to speak, and to worship as they choose.

Today, in this time of peace and prosperity at home, it is fitting that we reflect upon the venerable ideals that symbolize the American spirit. By remaining/loyal to these ideals, we will be worthy of the trust a generous God has reposed in us.

President Ronald Reagan, Proclamation 5319—Loyalty Day, 1985

The freedom of thought and action we Americans enjoy today seems as natural as the air we breathe. But there is a danger we may take this freedom for granted. We must never forget it was bought for us at a great price. The brave and resourceful Americans whose sacrifices gained our Independence and pre-served it for more than 200 years against formidable foes have set an example of unflinching loyalty to the ideal of liberty and justice for all.

Our great Nation is at peace, but peace demands of us a commitment to defend the system of government that has so effectively ensured our freedoms.

President Ronald Reagan, Proclamation 5471—Loyalty Day, 1986

For nearly 30 years, Americans have celebrated May 1 as Loyalty Day. This is a day to reaffirm our loyalty to our land of liberty and to recall with pride and gratitude the generations of our countrymen who preserved our freedom by their loyalty to America.

Loyalty to our country means being faithful to our heritage of liberty and justice for all. During this Bicentennial year of the Constitution, let us make our observance of Loyalty Day one of reflection on all the profound good that our experiment in individual liberty and limited government has meant for the United States of America and for the hope of the world. Let us rekindle in every heart the unshakeable strength and purpose that was our forefathers’. Let us ask the Author of Liberty, as did they, to bless and protect the United States. In these ways we will, in loyalty, fulfill our sacred trust to “secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.”

President Ronald Reagan, Proclamation 5645—Loyalty Day, 1987

Loyalty Day, May 1, is a day we set aside to promise allegiance to our country; to revere our heritage of individual freedom, limited government, and respect for every man’s divinely bestowed dignity; and to reaffirm our sacred trust to preserve, for our children and for all generations to come, this blessed land of liberty we call America.

We Americans have both pledged and practiced loyalty from the moment the first patriots conceived the idea of a new and independent Nation where only freedom would reign—where people would live as free as God made them and where tyranny alone would never find welcome. We have given our loyalty generously, in times of peace and times of peril. That we will always do, God willing.

Loyalty Day says much about the meaning of our country. In other parts of the world, as we know, totalitarian states proclaim May 1 a day of fealty and require a show of loyalty from the people. No such demand is needed here, of course, because in America we are blessed to be able to govern ourselves; “We the People” are in charge, and we need give our loyalty not to self-appointed rulers but to liberty.

The self-government that protects our rights and liberties has been won and defended in each generation by loyal Americans. That remains true, of course, of our gallant service men and women at home and in a hundred foreign climes. It is true as well of every American in home or office, in factory or farm, in hall of government or place of worship, who calls upon the Author of Liberty to guide and bless our land; of every citizen who cherishes brotherhood and patriotism; of every boy and girl who begins the day with the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.

The allegiance we Americans owe, and give gladly, on Loyalty Day and throughout our lives, is to a land and an ideal that beckon human hearts today just as always, here and around the globe—the land of the free, where the only command and the only loyalty are freedom’s way and freedom’s sway.

President Ronald Reagan, Proclamation 5803—Loyalty Day, 1988

President Bush

True patriotism requires more than civic pride; it also requires constant loyalty to the principles upon which our country was founded.

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Loyalty Day reminds us that freedom and democratic government are principles worthy of our lasting fidelity. Noting that it was not only their right but also their duty to oppose depotism, our Nation’s founders boldly declared America’s freedom and independence. “For the support of this Declaration,” they avowed, “. . . we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.” Despite the great risks and sacrifices they would surely face, the Founders knew that securing the God-given rights and freedom of the American people warranted such a solemn promise.

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Loyalty Day gives all Americans an opportunity to reaffirm their allegiance to the United States. On this occasion, we rededicate ourselves to the ideal of liberty and justice for all — a timeless ideal worthy of our abiding faith and fealty.

President George H.W. Bush, Proclamation 5962 – Loyalty Day, 1989

Our Nation is firmly rooted in the timeless ideals enshrined in our Constitution and so eloquently expressed in our Declaration of Independence: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” The success of our great experiment in self-government is testimony not only to the binding truth of these words, but also to the determination of those who have ever since struggled to uphold them. Dedicated to these ideals, the United States has grown and prospered. It has withstood the test of time and the bitter crucible of war, standing as a model of freedom and a source of hope for oppressed peoples around the world.

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Today, we remind ourselves that the principles upon which our Nation is founded are worthy of our abiding faith and fidelity. Our allegiance to this Nation is pledged freely — indeed, proudly — because it is allegiance to a noble ideal, one reaffirming the God-given dignity and worth of the individual and the freedom He has envisioned for each of us.

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As we observe Loyalty Day, let us reaffirm our belief in the ideals enshrined in our Declaration of Independence and in our Constitution, so that we may continue to be one Nation under God, a Nation worthy of His continued mercy and favor.

President George H.W. Bush, Proclamation 6119 – Loyalty Day, 1990

On this Loyalty Day, observed in the 200th year of our Bill of Rights, let us reflect on the profound faith and convictions that inspired that great document. Let us renew our loyalty to the vision of this country’s Founders, so that the United States might always be — as it is written in our Pledge of Allegiance — “one Nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

President George H.W. Bush, Proclamation 6278 – Loyalty Day, 1991

The United States has endured and prospered because it is founded on the ideals of freedom, equal opportunity, and justice — ideals worthy of the abiding faith and fidelity of our people. …. [O]ur observance of Loyalty Day has remained a cherished American tradition. On this occasion, we reaffirm our belief in the God-given dignity and worth of the individual and in each human being’s equal and unalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

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The Pledge of Allegiance expresses in words the loyalty and love of country that millions of Americans demonstrate, each day, through acts of patriotism and service. …. These and all Americans demonstrate that our country is, indeed, as President Hayes once described it, “a union depending not upon the constraint of force, but upon the loving devotion of a free people.”

President George H.W. Bush, Proclamation 6424 – Loyalty Day, 1992

President Clinton

“Loyalty Day” is an occasion on which we reaffirm our allegiance to our country and our devotion to the ideals on which it was founded. Our government “by the people” respects and protects the natural rights and freedoms of all citizens, without favor, and deserves our abiding fidelity.

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Generations of Americans have demonstrated loyalty and devotion to their country and have gone to great lengths to preserve their freedom.

President William J. Clinton, Proclamation 6556 – Loyalty Day, 1993

Each year, at the height of spring’s renewal, Americans take the time to reaffirm our allegiance to our country and to the ideals upon which it was founded. On this “Loyalty Day,” we pledge to defend the blessings of American democracy.

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Rather than establishing government control through the deprivation of basic human rights, our founders realized that individual freedom and the right to self-determination are the most powerful sources of national strength. This philosophy forms the bedrock upon which our Nation is built, and we continue to expand and enforce its wise mandate to this very day.

President William J. Clinton, Proclamation 6680 – Loyalty Day, 1994

From its beginnings, our great democracy has guaranteed its citizens the blessings of freedom and the right of self-determination.

President William J. Clinton, Proclamation 6794 – Loyalty Day, 1995

In pausing to honor all those who have dedicated their lives to our freedom, let us reflect on their deep commitment to the fundamental ideals of independence, justice, and equality—the very foundations of our way of life—and draw inspiration from their shining example.

President William J. Clinton, Proclamation 6889 – Loyalty Day, 1996

Each year, Americans dedicate the first day of May to formally acknowledge our love for this great land and our loyalty to the principles of freedom and equality on which our Nation was founded. This love and loyalty cannot be mandated or legislated; rather, these traits spring freely from our hearts and minds.

President William J. Clinton, Proclamation 6997 – Loyalty Day, 1997

More than two centuries ago, our Nation’s founders, with clear vision and courageous hearts, fashioned a new form of government for our new country. They created a government that honors human dignity and protects individual rights—a democracy strong enough to withstand external threats, secure enough to allow dissent from within, and responsive enough to help our citizens achieve their dreams. In doing so, America’s founders created a Nation that inspired loyalty from its citizens and gave hope to oppressed peoples around the world.

Since then, generations of Americans have reaffirmed their loyalty and devotion to our country.

President William J. Clinton, Proclamation 7091 – Loyalty Day, 1998

In 1787, when our founders came together to sign the Constitution and “secure the Blessings of Liberty,” honor individual rights, and guarantee equality, they laid the foundations of a country that would inspire the lasting loyalty and love of its citizens.

President William J. Clinton, Proclamation 7192 – Loyalty Day, 1999

In the Declaration of Independence and in the Constitution, our Nation’s founders first articulated the enduring ideals that have sustained our democracy–freedom, self-determination, justice, and equality. Each year we set aside this special day to reaffirm our allegiance to those ideals and to our beloved country.

President William J. Clinton, Proclamation 7300 – Loyalty Day, 2000

President Bush

Two hundred and twenty-five years ago, America’s founders faced a decisive crossroads. Thomas Jefferson later remembered “the bold and doubtful election we were to make for our country, between submission or the sword.” They chose the sword, and a Nation was born.

Today, we celebrate our loyalty to this country and to the principles for which America stands.

President George W. Bush, Proclamation 7429–Loyalty Day, 2001

Our loyalty to American democracy and freedom is born of pride, appreciation, and understanding of our country. We are loyal to America, our fellow citizens, and these ideals.

President George W. Bush, Proclamation 7549 – Loyalty Day, 2002

To be an American is not a matter of blood or birth. Our citizens are bound by ideals that represent the hope of all mankind: that all men are created equal, endowed with unalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. On Loyalty Day, we reaffirm our allegiance to our country and resolve to uphold the vision of our Forefathers.

President George W. Bush, Proclamation 7671 – Loyalty Day, 2003

As Americans, we work to preserve the freedom declared by our Founding Fathers, defended by generations, and granted to every man and woman on Earth by the Almighty. On Loyalty Day, we are reminded that we are citizens with obligations to our country, to each other, and to our great legacy of freedom and democracy.

President George W. Bush, Proclamation 7779 – Loyalty Day, 2004

Generations of men and women have sacrificed to defend the basic principles of liberty upon which our Nation was founded. This spirit of selfless service helps keep America strong and free. On Loyalty Day, we join together to celebrate this bond that makes our country great.

President George W. Bush, Proclamation 7892 – Loyalty Day, 2005

Our Nation is blessed and bound together by a creed of freedom and equality that is entrusted to all Americans. Preserving the ideals of our founding requires the service and sacrifice of every generation, and on Loyalty Day, we celebrate the gift of liberty and remember our own obligation to this great Nation.

President George W. Bush, Proclamation 8011 – Loyalty Day, 2006

America was founded by patriots who risked their lives to bring freedom to our Nation. Today, our citizens are grateful for our Founding Fathers and confident in the principles that lead us forward. On Loyalty Day, we celebrate the blessings of freedom and remember our responsibility to continue our legacy of liberty.

President George W. Bush, Proclamation 8137 – Loyalty Day, 2007

Americans believe that every man, woman, and child has unalienable rights, dignity, and matchless value. Advancing these ideals was the honorable vision of our Founders and the mission that helped shape this great country. On Loyalty Day, we celebrate the legacy of freedom and the shared ideals that bind us together.

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Two hundred and thirty-two years after the founding of our country, we remain committed to advancing freedom and renewing the values that sustain our liberty. Through the spirit and determination of our people, our Nation will prosper and our liberty will be secure.

President George W. Bush, Proclamation 8245 – Loyalty Day, 2008

President Obama

More than two centuries ago, our Nation’s Founders declared the birth of a new Nation and began an experiment in self-governance. The young Republic committed itself to protecting the rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for all citizens. These ideals inspired loyalty to the young Nation and moved volunteers to fight for their independence.

Generations later, these founding principles continue to unify and command the loyalty of the American people.

President Barack Obama, Proclamation 8368 – Loyalty Day, 2009

On July 4, 1776, after the adoption of the Declaration of Independence, the Continental Congress of the newly formed United States of America appointed a committee to design a national seal. Our Founders set out to create a visible symbol of our sovereign country to inspire all our citizens and to represent us abroad.

An initial sketch depicted a banner bearing the Latin motto, “E Pluribus Unum,” or, “Out of many, one.” After years of deliberation and multiple drafts of the emblem’s design, the final seal displayed an eagle with outstretched wings, clenching a banner in its beak with those powerful words emblazoned across it. It became a cherished creed, representing the foundation of our national values. As a union of States and a Nation of immigrants from every part of the world, we are bound as one people by our adherence to common ideals: individual equality, constitutional liberty, and the rule of law.

President Barack Obama, Proclamation 8512 – Loyalty Day, 2010

When our Nation’s Founders adopted the Declaration of Independence, they pledged to build a government that represented America’s highest ideals, a Un-ion that secured its people’s sacred rights by “deriving [its] just powers from the consent of the governed.” From the Revolutionary War to the formation of our young country, our Founders’ commitment to this principle never wavered. In the fall of 1787, America launched its improbable experiment in democracy, embedding in our Constitution the core values of liberty, equality, and justice for all.

Throughout our proud history, Americans motivated by loyalty and fidelity to these principles have worked to perfect our Union.

….

The ideals upheld by our forebears have stirred the resolute devotion of the American people and inspired hope in the hearts of people from across the globe. With trust in a future that keeps faith with our history, we remain true to the promise of America and the spirit that unites us all.

President Barack Obama, Proclamation 8666 – Loyalty Day, 2011

More than two centuries ago, our Founders laid out a charter that assured the rule of law and the rights of man. Through times of tranquility and the throes of change, the Constitution has always guided our course toward fulfilling that most noble promise that all are equal, all are free, and all deserve the chance to pursue their full measure of happiness. America has carried on not only for the skill or vision of history’s celebrated figures, but also for the generations who have remained faithful to the ideals of our forebears and true to our founding documents. On Loyalty Day, we reflect on that proud heritage and press on in the long journey toward prosperity for all.

….

On Loyalty Day, we rededicate ourselves to the common good, to the cornerstones of liberty, equality, and justice, and to the unending pursuit of a more perfect Union.

President Barack Obama, Proclamation 8811 – Loyalty Day, 2012

But with every step forward, we have reaffirmed our faith in the ideals that inspired our founding. We have held fast to the principles at our country’s core: service and citizenship; courage and the common good; liberty, equality, and justice for all.

….

But as loyal citizens of these United States, we have the power to set our country’s course. Let us mark this day by pressing on in the march toward lasting freedom and true equality, grateful for the precious rights and responsibilities entrusted to each of us by our forebears.

President Barack Obama, Proclamation 8973 – Loyalty Day, 2013

Over 150 years ago, as a civil war threatened to dissolve our Union, President Abraham Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address. Defining the American experiment as “conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that ‘all men are created equal,'” he resolved that our Nation “shall not perish from the earth.” He understood that what makes America most worth preserving are our founding ideals.

….

On Loyalty Day, we renew our conviction to the principles of liberty, equality, and justice under the law.

President Barack Obama, Proclamation 9116 – Loyalty Day, 2014

As Americans, we are united not by the circumstances of our birth or our station in life, but by our fidelity to a set of shared ideals and unalienable rights. The principles of freedom, justice, and equality for all are at the very core of who we are as a Nation.

President Barack Obama, Proclamation 9269 – Loyalty Day, 2015

America endures because of the generations of our people who have endeavored alongside one another, joining their voices and their efforts to ensure our Nation lives up to its highest ideals.

….

This Loyalty Day, let us remember that what defines us as one American people is our dedication to common ideals—rather than similarities of origin or creed—and let us reaffirm that embracing this truth lies at the heart of what it means to be a citizen. As long as we stay true to that mission and uphold our responsibility to deliver a freer, fairer Nation to the next generation, a future of ever greater progress will remain within our reach.

President Barack Obama, Proclamation 9429—Loyalty Day, 2016

President Trump

On Loyalty Day, we recognize and reaffirm our allegiance to the principles upon which our Nation is built. We pledge our dedication to the United States of America and honor its unique heritage, reminding ourselves that we are one Nation, under God, made possible by those who have sacrificed to defend our liberty. We honor our Republic and acknowledge the great responsibility that self-governance demands of each of us.

The United States stands as the world’s leader in upholding the ideals of freedom, equality, and justice. Together, and with these fundamental concepts enshrined in our Constitution, our Nation perseveres in the face of those who would seek to harm it.

President Donald Trump, Proclamation 9602—Loyalty Day, 2017

On Loyalty Day, we reflect with humility and gratitude upon the freedoms we hold dear, and we reaffirm our allegiance to our Nation and its founding principles.  We cherish our system of self-government, whereby each American citizen is free to exercise their God-given and inalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  We honor and defend our Constitution, which constrains the power of government and allows us freely to exercise these rights.  We also recognize the great responsibility that accompanies a free people and vow to preserve our hard-won liberty.  For we know, as President Ronald Reagan once said, that “freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction.”

President Donald Trump, Proclamation Loyalty Day, 2018


The United States is so different than the People’s Republic of China. We just don’t weave that freedom, liberty, self-government thing stuff into our deep desire for loyalty.

And it’s because of our answer to those two key questions…


Which story are we in?

Who are we, here in the story?


But we are so grateful to Robert McKee. By looking through the lens of story, our team is connecting dots we would have never even seen. For instance, you need to see this…


Sacrificial Love and the Binary Core Value in the Story of America


If Christianity is the story we are in, then this is the ultimate loyal love move…


Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.

John 15:13


And that’s why Jesus fits with the description of the hero in a story…


[A] lead character that is heroic in nature meaning that they end up sacrificing themselves for the greater good of humanity.

That’s what a hero does.

Shawn Coyne, in Hero’s Journey – Moments

The sacrifice of one’s own life (or happiness or future prospects or whatever) for the good of others is the defining act of the hero.

Give Your Hero a Hero Speech, By STEVEN PRESSFIELD, Steven Pressfield Online, JANUARY 17, 2018

And that fits with these…


No community will fail to pay greater honor to the soldier or police officer who risks his or her life for the common good than to the coward who flees at the first sign of danger or, worse yet, betrays the community to outsiders.

Francis Fukuyama, Identity

Every country finds a way to reward its heroes. It’s a matter of solemn obligation, to be sure, and yet over the long run, it’s also a matter of enlightened national self-interest. That is, a nation needs heroes, not just to provide inspiring role models, but for the sake of its very survival. After all, from time to time, every country faces a mortal threat to its existence, and so it must, in order to survive, have a reservoir of citizens who are willing to stand up and fight for it. Otherwise, the nation ends up on the ash heap of history, alongside Gascony, Wallachia, and the Iroquois Confederacy.

Why America Honors Her Heroes, By JAMES P. PINKERTON, The American Conservative, December 19, 2018

And we get that…


China’s largely rubber stamp parliament introduced legislation to protect the name, image, reputation and honor of the country’s historic heroes and martyrs, the official Xinhua news agency said.

“It is prohibited to misrepresent, defame, profane or deny the deeds and spirits of heroes and martyrs, or to praise or beautify invasions,” according to Xinhua’s summary of the law.

Those who do so will be punished in accordance with the law and may be investigated for criminal responsibility, Xinhua added.

….

Heroes and martyrs who gave their lives to the parties various causes fill museums across China and are featured in school textbooks to impart lessons of valor, loyalty and patriotism.

China makes defaming revolutionary heroes punishable by law, Reuters, APRIL 27, 2018

So, look how all that fits with your Medal of Honor…


Army, Navy and Air Force versions

The Medal of Honor is the United States of America’s highest and most prestigious personal military decoration that may be awarded to recognize U.S. military service members who distinguished themselves by acts of valor.

….

Public Law 88-77, July 25, 1963: The requirements for the Medal of Honor were standardized among all the services, requiring that a recipient had “distinguished himself conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty.”

Medal of Honor, Wikipedia

And Paula Wong pointed out how it shows up in the Loyalty Day Declarations…


The strength and vigor of our Nation is directly attributable to the dedication, devotion, and loyalty of its people to the democratic principles embodied in our Constitution. We have had the good fortune from the time of the inception of our system of freedom and justice under law to be blessed with sons and daughters who have willingly and courageously risked, or sacrificed, their lives and their fortunes in order that this Nation might live and prosper.

President Lyndon Johnson, Proclamation 3581—Loyalty Day, 1964

Our Nation’s rise to its unequaled position of prosperity and power was no accident of fate-nor was it achieved without costly struggle. Rather, the United States flourished because her people were so dedicated to free government that they were willing to sacrifice their lives and fortunes, at home or abroad, to preserve our democratic institutions. The roll of our honored dead attests to the courage of our people.

President Lyndon Johnson, Proclamation 3643—Loyalty Day, 1965

Loyalty Day 1967 thus becomes an opportunity for the vast majority in America—while respecting the right of dissent—to affirm their conviction that freedom is indivisible, their realization that the cruel burden of war must be carried, and their heartfelt gratitude to those who are risking their lives in harsh witness to our ideals.

If we are to be worthy of their sacrifice, it is vital that we demonstrate our active loyalty to the cause for which they fight. The badge of American loyalty should be more than a uniform.

President Lyndon Johnson, Proclamation 3775—Loyalty Day, 1967

“I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Re-public for which it stands . . .” From earliest school days most Americans know these words as they know their own names. They constitute a solemn promise of loyalty signed in the heart and paid off lifelong in the currency of daily deeds, great and small—from the ultimate sacrifice of the soldier, to the conscientious vote of the citizen, to the productive labor of the working man or woman and the precious trust of the parent. Once again this May 1, we pause as a nation to ask ourselves how we can live our loyalty better.

President Richard Nixon, Proclamation 4118—Loyalty Day, 1972

Americans have fought, and many have died, to preserve the blessings of liberty in this fair land. Each of us has the opportunity to honor these sacrifices and to renew our commitment to American ideals as we go about our daily lives.

President Ronald Reagan, Proclamation 5032—Loyalty Day, 1983

The freedom of thought and action we Americans enjoy today seems as natural as the air we breathe. But there is a danger we may take this freedom for granted. We must never forget it was bought for us at a great price. The brave and resourceful Americans whose sacrifices gained our Independence and pre-served it for more than 200 years against formidable foes have set an example of unflinching loyalty to the ideal of liberty and justice for all.

President Ronald Reagan, Proclamation 5471—Loyalty Day, 1986

Loyalty Day reminds us that freedom and democratic government are principles worthy of our lasting fidelity. Noting that it was not only their right but also their duty to oppose depotism, our Nation’s founders boldly declared America’s freedom and independence. “For the support of this Declaration,” they avowed, “. . . we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.” Despite the great risks and sacrifices they would surely face, the Founders knew that securing the God-given rights and freedom of the American people warranted such a solemn promise.

Generations of Americans since then have expressed the same selfless devotion to the cause of freedom. Although they were cruelly tested by the horrors of war, our Nation’s veterans — and those servicemen and women who were killed in the line of duty — demonstrated exceptional devotion to their country. Those who wear our Nation’s uniform today, and all those public officials who honor their solemn pledge to uphold and defend our Constitution, also give loyal service to our Nation.

President George H.W. Bush, Proclamation 5962 – Loyalty Day, 1989

In the lives of nations as well as individuals, loyalty is marked by confidence in its object and by kinship to the virtues of faith, perseverance, industry, and self-sacrifice. This Nation’s great experiment in self-government has endured for more than 200 years because generations of brave and selfless Americans have believed in freedom and have labored and sacrificed to preserve it.

On this Loyalty Day, we are especially mindful of our Nation’s service members, past and present. In the spirit of our Founding Fathers, who pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor in support of America’s independence, these individuals have made a solemn commitment to defend the rights of others. Their loyalty to the ideals on which this Nation is founded has been proved on battlefields around the globe. Indeed, those American military personnel who recently took part in Operation Desert Storm — whether providing invaluable support here at home or serving along the sands and off the shores of Saudi Arabia — left no doubts about the depth of their devotion to freedom. We are grateful to them and to all of America’s service members and veterans.

President George H.W. Bush, Proclamation 6278 – Loyalty Day, 1991

Generations of Americans have demonstrated their loyalty and devotion to this country, many risking their lives for the sake of defending the common good.

President William J. Clinton, Proclamation 6680 – Loyalty Day, 1994

All Americans can be proud of the heritage of courage and sacrifice that has extended unbroken through generations of our citizens. The success of the United States today is seen both in our continued prosperity and strength and in our role as an international beacon of liberty. As we recall those who gave their lives for our freedom, we see our Nation’s history reflected in their ranks—from the tireless “Minutemen” in Lexington to the brave men and women who fought in the Persian Gulf. These fine citizens, along with their families and those who have served on the home front, deserve our profound respect and gratitude. Let history forever record our loyalty to their legacy.

President William J. Clinton, Proclamation 6794 – Loyalty Day, 1995

To nurture loyalty to and love of country, the Congress, by Public Law 85-529, has designated May 1 of each year as “Loyalty Day.” We spend this day in celebration of our Constitution and Bill of Rights, and we honor the extraordinary sacrifices made by the members of our Armed Forces throughout our Nation’s proud history.

President William J. Clinton, Proclamation 6889 – Loyalty Day, 1996

The courage and sacrifice of generations of Americans who have served in our Armed Forces have sustained the vision of our Nation’s founders. From the fields near Lexington and Concord to the skies over Belgrade, nearly 50 million citizens have placed themselves in harm’s way to defend our freedom, promote our values, and advance our interests around the world. Many of them have died in the process, willing to make the ultimate sacrifice out of loyalty and devotion to our beloved country.

President William J. Clinton, Proclamation 7192 – Loyalty Day, 1999

We find perhaps the strongest and most moving evidence of loyalty to America in the service and sacrifice of our men and women in uniform. From the War of Independence to today’s peacekeeping missions around the world, generations of Americans have shown their allegiance by defending our Nation against tyrants and terrorists, protecting our national interests wherever they are threatened, and promoting our values across the globe.

President William J. Clinton, Proclamation 7300 – Loyalty Day, 2000

For our military personnel, loyalty and dedication is a way of life. The men and women of our Armed Forces embody loyalty as they work to protect our ideals. Throughout our history, America’s military has heroically defended our country and its founding principles of freedom and democracy. Today, our military is again responding to the call of duty with courage and pride. These brave individuals who risk their lives fighting terror honor those who have made the ultimate sacrifice on behalf of the American people.

Our Constitution speaks of forming “a more perfect Union,” and Americans have always responded to this call with commitment and character. Brave citizens have fought to abolish slavery, to extend voting rights to all our citizens, and to uphold civil rights. The struggle to improve our Nation also takes place on an individual level, one person at a time. Men and women of all ages and from all over the country work every day to help others in need. Through families, community groups, and places of worship, Americans give of themselves to help others realize a brighter future.

Our loyalty to American democracy and freedom is born of pride, appreciation, and understanding of our country. We are loyal to America, our fellow citizens, and these ideals. Loyalty Day provides an opportunity to recognize those who demonstrate their commitment to our country through service and sacrifice. These individuals serve as a model for all Americans.

President George W. Bush, Proclamation 7549 – Loyalty Day, 2002

Throughout our history, honorable men and women have demonstrated their loyalty to America by making remarkable sacrifices to preserve and protect these values.

Today, America’s men and women in uniform are protecting our Nation, defending the peace of the world, and advancing the cause of liberty. The world has seen again the fine character of our Nation through our military as they fought to protect the innocent and liberate the oppressed in Operation Iraqi Freedom. We are honored by the service of foreign nationals in our Armed Services whose willingness to risk their lives for a country they cannot yet call their own is proof of the loyalty this country inspires. Their service and sacrifice are a testament to their love for America, and our soldiers’ honor on and off the battlefield reaffirms our Nation’s most deeply held beliefs: that every life counts, and that all humans have an unalienable right to live as free people.

President George W. Bush, Proclamation 7671 – Loyalty Day, 2003

We learn lessons of loyalty from the selfless dedication and unwavering allegiance of our men and women in uniform. We are grateful for their courage and willingness to sacrifice for our country, and we stand united behind them. Through the “On the Homefront” program, a USA Freedom Corps initiative, many Americans are writing to service members, contributing to the purchase of care packages to be sent overseas, and helping the families of those deployed with basic family needs such as home repairs, financial planning, and child care. By supporting our troops and their families, citizens are making a difference in their communities and showing loyalty to our country through their patriotism.

President George W. Bush, Proclamation 7779 – Loyalty Day, 2004

Generations of men and women have sacrificed to defend the basic principles of liberty upon which our Nation was founded. This spirit of selfless service helps keep America strong and free. On Loyalty Day, we join together to celebrate this bond that makes our country great.

For more than two centuries, our military has given us examples of courage and patriotism that make every American proud. Today, more than a million Americans are stationed around the world, taking great risks and making personal sacrifices to secure the blessings of liberty for our country and to spread peace and freedom. These brave men and women are unrelenting in battle and unwavering in loyalty. Their service exemplifies our Nation’s ideals, and they have our gratitude and support.

President George W. Bush, Proclamation 7892 – Loyalty Day, 2005

Our Nation is blessed and bound together by a creed of freedom and equality that is entrusted to all Americans. Preserving the ideals of our founding requires the service and sacrifice of every generation, and on Loyalty Day, we celebrate the gift of liberty and remember our own obligation to this great Nation.

The dedication and selflessness of America’s soldiers and their families inspire us all. Some of our Nation’s finest men and women have given their lives in freedom’s cause. By their sacrifices they have given us a legacy of liberty and brought honor to the uniform, our flag, and our country. The American people are grateful to the brave men and women of our military for their service and we will always stand behind them.

President George W. Bush, Proclamation 8011 – Loyalty Day, 2006

We believe deeply in freedom and self-government, values embodied in our cherished documents and defended by our troops over the course of generations. Our citizens hold the truths of our founding close to their hearts and demonstrate their loyalty in countless ways. We are inspired by the patriotic service of the men and women who wear our Nation’s uniform with honor and decency. The military spouses and families who stand by their loved ones represent the best of the American spirit, and we are profoundly grateful for their sacrifice.

President George W. Bush, Proclamation 8137 – Loyalty Day, 2007

Our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen demonstrate their love of country by stepping forward when America needs them most. By putting our country’s security before their own, the men and women of the Armed Forces have strengthened our Nation and brought hope to millions around the world. All Americans are grateful to the members of the military and their families for their service, sacrifice, and dedication, and we are proud of their accomplishments.

President George W. Bush, Proclamation 8245 – Loyalty Day, 2008

We enjoy these blessings of liberty only because brave patriots have answered the call of duty. The men and women of the United States Armed Forces exemplify loyalty to our highest ideals, as do those who have fought valiantly for civil rights within our borders. These Americans and many others have made enormous sacrifices, and our Nation is grateful for their selflessness and unshakeable loyalty.

President Barack Obama, Proclamation 8368 – Loyalty Day, 2009

Over two centuries since our Founders established our Republic and our freedom, the firm resolve that ran in their veins still courses through our own. Since then, countless loyal Americans have risen to preserve our Union and the blessings bestowed upon us. Today, whether singing the national anthem, watching our flag billow in the breeze, or seeing the hope in a young child’s eyes, each of us can still feel the patriotism and respect for one another that defines us as a people. It is the same love of country that drives our Armed Forces to shoulder the responsibility of defending our citizens and our values. We will forever stand united against any force that seeks to divide us, finding strength in our diversity and inspiration in the sacrifices of our forebears.

President Barack Obama, Proclamation 8512 – Loyalty Day, 2010

Throughout the course of our history, our values have sustained us through periods of tremendous struggle and times of great prosperity. They found expression in the courage of patriots who loved this country so much that they were willing to risk everything to realize its promise.

President Barack Obama, Proclamation 9269 – Loyalty Day, 2015

Our Nation has always been at its finest when guided by a spirit of shared sacrifice and common purpose. It is that spirit that led a small band of patriots to declare our fledgling democracy free from the grasp of tyranny, that slaves and abolitionists carried in their hearts as they marched forward on the long journey toward freedom, and that guides the men and women who wear our country’s uniform in their selfless service. From the unlit paths of the Underground Railroad to the lunch counters of Greensboro, the first streets draped in the colors of pride to the highest Court in our land, we have seen throughout our history that America is inexorably driven forward by those who commit themselves to expanding our founding promise through extraordinary acts of courage and heroism. We honor that legacy—that demonstrates that the forces of hope and love of country are strong enough to overcome even our most deeply entrenched obstacles—by resolving to carry it forward, by rejecting appeals to prejudice and division in our time, and by drawing on the hopes and dreams that bind us.

President Barack Obama, Proclamation 9429—Loyalty Day, 2016

On Loyalty Day, we recognize and reaffirm our allegiance to the principles upon which our Nation is built. We pledge our dedication to the United States of America and honor its unique heritage, reminding ourselves that we are one Nation, under God, made possible by those who have sacrificed to defend our liberty. We honor our Republic and acknowledge the great responsibility that self-governance demands of each of us.

President Donald Trump, Proclamation 9602—Loyalty Day, 2017

As we have since our Nation’s founding, Americans today continue to strengthen the fabric of our Nation.  The men and women of our Armed Forces courageously confront our enemies, who seek to do us harm and to destroy our way of life.  Our first responders valiantly rush toward danger to save lives and aid those in need, often at great personal risk. 

President Donald Trump, Proclamation Loyalty Day, 2018

That caught our attention. Your presidents agree about the power of sacrificial loyal love.

But are you aware that it looks like the migration of America’s Christians into the minimalist corner has fogged your hearts and minds? Because if you want to even try to rescue your country, you are going to have to put skin in the game.

If you don’t, well, look at this…


“This is the nature of war. By protecting others, you save yourself,” says Kambei Shimada, the leader of the itinerant mercenaries in Akira Kurosawa’s movie Seven Samurai. He’s teaching a rabble of farmers how to defend themselves against a ruthless gang of bandits. Having weapons and knowing how to use them is all well and good, but unless every man is committed to giving his life for the others, every one of them is doomed: “If you think only of yourself, you’ll only destroy yourself.” 

Or, as William Manchester put it: “Any man in combat who lacks comrades who will die for him, or for whom he is willing to die, is not a man at all. He is truly damned.” 

Eric Felton, Loyalty: The Vexing Virtue