Charlie Chaplin once wrote:
“I’m sorry, but I don’t want to be an emperor. That’s not my business. I don’t want to rule or conquer anyone. I should like to help everyone if possible: Jew, Gentile, black man, white. We all want to help one another. Human beings are like that. We want to live by each other’s happiness, not by each other’s misery. We don’t want to hate and despise one another. In this world there is room for everyone and the good earth is rich and can provide for everyone. The way of life can be free and beautiful.”
In the seventeenth chapter of St. Luke it is written that the kingdom of God is within us, not in just one group, but in all of us. In you! You, the people, have the power to create happiness. You, the people, have the power to make this life free and beautiful, to make this life a wonderful adventure. Then in the name of democracy, let us use that power. Let us all unite. Let us fight for a new world, a decent world that will give us a chance to work, to give youth a future and old age a security. Let us fight to free the world: to do away with national barriers; to do away with greed, with hate and intolerance. Let us fight for a world of reason, a world where science and progress will lead to happiness. In the name of democracy, let us all unite.”
There is much more to this freedom speech and I have taken only parts, but it is a stirring message. In this day and age, so many scream about their rights. It is true. We are lucky to have so many rights and freedoms. We must remember, however, that with rights come responsibilities. Sad, but true: It seems that many people worry too much about their rights and too little about their responsibilities.
In this holiday week, be grateful and exercise your rights AND your responsibilities!