Posted BY: Vince Coyner

America’s success was never predetermined but, at pivotal moments, Americans and their leaders made the right (and always hard) choices. Do we still have such people in America today?

I was in 6th grade in 1976 during America’s Bicentennial. I played Abraham Lincoln in the school’s celebration, my family parked next to the Pentagon to watch the fireworks above DC, and our class visited the newly opened Air and Space Museum. TV commercials were chock full of patriotic themes from morning until stations signed off with the national anthem. It was a good time to be an American.

Looking back, I lived in a cocoon of security that came with knowing that the world was as it was supposed to be, as if God had our backs. I believed the America I knew was predestined, for it seemed inevitable that our nation would grow from a scrappy upstart in 1776 to the world’s leader in 1976. America was Manifest Destiny writ large.

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