Today is the anniversary of the death of our 30th President, Calvin Coolidge.
President Coolidge was described as a champion of the middle class and was influenced by a college philosophy professor, Charles Edward Garman. He summed up his professor’s teaching by saying “The only hope of perfecting human relationships is in accordance with the law of service under which men are not so solicitous about what they shall get as they are about what they shall give.”
Today, and going forward, it is my hope that we all serve with a purpose that doesn’t focus on what we get in return but about giving with a humble heart.
Trivia: Although 3 presidents died on July 4 (John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, James Monroe), Coolidge was the only president born on the anniversary of our independence.
Franklin Roosevelt’s Gubernatorial portrait via Wikimedia Commons
The National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis was founded on this day in 1938. President Franklin D. Roosevelt (a victim of polio himself) established this non-profit organization to combat the epidemic mostly affecting infants and children, resulting in paralysis and death.
It is now better known by its name as the March of Dimes. On a joke, comedian Eddie Cantor suggested that people mail their dimes to the White House as a way to support their efforts. And the name has stuck ever since.
The foundation was charged to find the cause and develop a cure for polio, a feat it accomplished in 1955. Dr. Jonas Salk is now a household name associated with the successful polio vaccine.
So the next time you are asked to contribute to a cause that is legitimately trying to end a disease, give. Even if it’s only a dime.
Today marks the anniversary of when Georgia ratified the US Constitution in 1788, becoming the 4th state to do so. Named as a tribute to King George II of Great Britain, Georgia was established as an agrarian society envisioned by its founder James Edward Oglethorpe.
Since then, Georgia has grown and developed into an economic and cultural powerhouse due in part to the climate. And I’m not just speaking of temperatures.
A quick internet search of Georgia’s climate shows a “humid subtropical climate with most of the state having short, mild winters and long, hot summers.” (Wikipedia)
While weather has been favorable, a lot of Georgia’s success can be attributed to Oglethorpe and his plan which included a vision of social equity and civic virtue. The layout of Savannah is heralded today almost 300 years later as one of the finest diagrams for city organization and growth.
How is the climate for your plans? Do you have a vision like that of Oglethorpe? You should be able to see your vision and keep that in perspective as you work toward making it a reality.
We often resolve this time of year to make a change in something. But are we depending on the change to make us happy?
How about we resolve to be happy in our current surroundings? Not with, but in.
“Happiness depends more upon the internal frame of a person’s own mind than on the externals of the world.”
This was written in a letter from George to his mother Mary Ball Washington. After complaining that her children weren’t properly caring for her, George encouraged her to move in with one of her three children or “make your income certain” by renting out her land. It was a practical approach aimed at helping make choices to ease ourselves of “care and concern”.
If you resolve to make a change, I hope it involves happiness.
“There’s no magic to my formula. I just make what I like — good, human stories in which you can get with people and which prove that the better things of life can be as interesting as the sordid things.” Walt Disney (December 5, 1901 – December 15, 1966)