The American landscape is one of diverse communities woven together, from cities to suburbs to farmland and mountains. Every single person in every single one of these communities has value and one of our nation’s virtues is how we see the worth and dignity of every American.
In Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s iconic “I Have a Dream Speech,” he underscored the need for all Americans to be treated with dignity: “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”
Treating each other with dignity is a pillar of American life.
Those who choose to protect us from harm and keep communities safe deserve to be treated with the same dignity we give each other. Lately they’ve come under attack from a small but vocal minority.
That minority would strip the dignity of those who sacrifice to protect us. In doing so, they jeopardize the public safety in which our communities can grow and thrive. They jeopardize the opportunity and freedom our nation offers to those both born here, or travel here from abroad to seek a new life.
The overwhelming majority of Americans support law enforcement and its tireless work to keep communities safe; and bring those who would jeopardize the safety of our families to justice. Law enforcement is especially critical to protecting and helping disadvantaged communities and their working families, single parents, small businesses and schoolchildren.
Likewise, when law enforcement oversteps and strips the innocent of their dignity, there also must be accountability and justice.
It’s through mutual respect and cooperation in keeping each other safe, and in treating each other with the dignity we deserve, that our communities flourish and our nation succeeds.