Having recently completed Dan Rather’s recent book, What Unites Us, I am continuing to ponder some of his many observations and reflections. By no means do I intend this to be a review of that book. But one of his chapters or essays was titled, “Steady” and I am seriously pondering that idea.

We encourage our children to be steady when bicycling or skating. Beyond that, Mr Rather’s message is a very powerful one that we (or at least I) under-utilize.

My first inclination is to identify synonyms for “steady.” Unwavering is probably a good one. Steady, however, suggests strength and durability, both of which can be extremely valuable for us right now, as individual citizens and for our magnificent country.

There is no secret that our recent election gave us all a reason for concern about our country’s unity. In addition to red versus blue, we had right to life vs. Roe v. Wade, gun registration versus second amendment, and so on.

As Mr. Rather so eloquently states, this country was founded on our rights to free speech without fear of censorship or persecution. With our variations of opinion so obvious, the need to remain steady in the preservation of freedoms should remain steady and unshakable.

Rather also reminds us that the actions having the most powerful and enduring effects on this country were completed by millions of Americans throughout our history. Some of them were recognized – these include Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., John Muir, Jane Addams, Mark Twain, Abraham Lincoln, and many others. But the everyday citizens – teachers, heath care workers, police officers, fire fighters, and so many others were steady and reliable in their efforts and accomplishments.

I agree with Mr. Rather that steady is mandatory. We must teach it to our children and their children, to protect all of our freedoms, now and for the future.

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