This is a statement I prepared for the DFA Phone Card presentation on December 29th, 2004.
My name is Chad Lupkes, and I was born here in Seattle. I was in the US Navy from 1988 to 1994. I would like to speak about what being an American means to me. To do that, I want to review the colors on our flag. Those colors are red, white and blue.
Blue represents opportunity. The blue sky on the horizon, a horizon that we constantly strive to reach. We may be distracted by the treasures and comfort that we find, but we must continue to strive to achieve, to learn new things, and find new paths.
White represents fairness. The white paper that we use to vote, the paper that we use to write our laws. With the rainbow of ideas, ideology, race and culture, the law must be written to be fair to everyone. This helps to ensure that we leave nobody behind as we strive toward that horizon.
Red represents sacrifice. The red blood that is spilled on the battlefield, the tears that we shed in memory of those who have sacrificed everything. The sweat that comes from our efforts to regain what was lost. We must never forget those that we have lost, and we must be there to help the ones who have sacrificed for us.
This is why we are here today, to acknowledge and honor our veterans and active military. To provide them with the opportunity to reach out and reconnect to family and friends, and rejoin our community as we continue to strive toward that blue horizon, writing our laws to leave no one behind.