From the Climate Action Team

What Do We Value as a Nation?

For this 4th of July, Seattle PI columnist Joel Connelly wrote that we must not let narcissism “dominate and politicize Independence Day.” [1] We, the people, must hold up American values put forth in our constitution, to establish justice and promote the general welfare of all.

Mount Rainier from above Myrtle Falls

Imagine if our Constitution’s preamble said: “We, the people of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty” [2] for all citizens and the lands, waters, and creatures we live here with.

What if our constitution had articles in it like the Swiss constitution, which says the government will “endeavor to achieve a balanced and sustainable relationship between nature and its capacity to renew itself and the demands placed on it by the population and legislate on the protection of the population and its natural environment against damage”? [3]

What if the 4th of July holiday were about celebrating and honoring with loving gratitude the incredible diversity of our home: the water of the Puget Sound, the farmlands of the Skagit Valley, the majestic Olympics and Cascades, the trees that clean our air, the foods we eat, and our communities?

[2] The Preamble of the US Constitution
[3] The Swiss Constitution