Sept. 1, 2008 editorial: Celebrating the American way of life

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THE ISSUE: Labor Day in the United States OUR VIEW: Don't take opportunity for granted

By Holly Tabor

At its core, the American way of life boils down to one thing: opportunity.

That’s the ideal this country was founded on, its economy stands on and our individual and collective livelihoods depend on. It’s what people come to this country from other lands in search of. It’s the foundation of the American Dream.

The great thing about opportunity is it requires something of us. It requires ambition, dedication, accountability. It requires work.

And in many ways, work is something we, as Americans and as human beings, require as well.

Work is the way by which we contribute to the greater good, to humanity, to the machine that is our infrastructure. No matter the job, the pay scale or the employer, each job and each individual holding a job is a pivotal piece in not only the economy, but the identity of the community, nation and the world.

On a more personal level, work is a way to make a living, to provide for our families, to establish ourselves in a community. It is the essence of, and essential to, our survival.

At times, such as now, when the economy is soft, employment opportunities are hard to come by and jobs are eliminated, it’s important to remember just how important work is and how fortunate are those who have jobs.

Whether it’s harvesting the land, assembling auto parts, teaching or leading a company, the opportunity to work, to contribute and to drive one’s own fate is a blessing.

This Labor Day, celebrate and remember the multitudes of jobs and workers who make this country great. And if you are one of them, be thankful.

This editorial represents a consensus of The News-Enterprise editorial board: R. Chris Ordway, Warren Wheat, Sarah Reddoch, Jeff D’Alessio, Michelle McGuffin, Holly Tabor and Kendra Stewart.