To the Editor,

It's again the 4th of July. We here in Waxahachie and surrounding communities will celebrate our country's Declaration of Independence. And we will have our parades and subsequent picnics and celebrations. The traditions continue.

One of my favorite things to do is to march in the parade along with my Betsey Ross. Uncle Sam began as a name given by Union soldiers to Ulysses Samuels, a provider of goods who supplied them. The boxes were stamped U.S. which they translated into Uncle Sam. It became a name associated to our federal government and soon became synonymous.

During the lead up to the WWI. It was used to gather soldiers in recruitment posters which continues. Artists depicted what Uncle Sam looked like and the image, though altered, basically has remained the same. Instantly recognizable, it has become a symbol of our country like the eagle and flag. For Uncle Sam is America and each of us as we are make Uncle Sam.

When I walk in that costume, I only see fellow Americans along the way. No conservatives, no liberals, no members of any affiliation to a political thought or anyone under a particular banner. Or do I march as a representative of anything more than just American. I do pay particular attention to the children though. Their smiles and cheers invigorate me. Giving high fives and shaking their hands, I receive much more than I put out. What greater gift can we give our children but the gift of America. I have special reverence for the veterans amassed and spread throughout the crowds. I cannot express anything more about their sacrifice but to say thank you and hold back tears for those we can no longer thank.

We are lucky to be here in Waxahachie. We are lucky to be able to celebrate our freedom. I am extremely lucky to walk and to be among my townsfolk on this special day. And I will continue to walk as long as I can.

Even through the boos and cheers, while good things and bad things are happening in our country, among the division and the unity, and despite the hate and chaos some attribute as the present state of affairs, there remains America And the goodness and love of its people. That is a good enough reason for me to celebrate it with all my wonderful nieces and nephews of which I am very proud to be their uncle.

Alan Fox, Waxahachie