On July 4, 1776 the United States declared independence from Britain and a vigorous new democracy was born. This year we celebrate our 237th birthday and our founding fathers would be both pleased and disappointed at the
state of the country. This experiment in democracy has been unbelievably successful, but we still struggle with issues of basic fairness, parity and human rights in some areas.
Isn't that sort of where we are as a profession? We have certainly come along way, but we are remarkably
retrograde in areas of respect, parity, professional independence and professional licensure.
I wrote in a previous blog, "When American patriots chose to defy King, Crown, a powerful power structure, and
even history itself, the conventional wisdom was that the fledgling movement could not survive. There was little more than a deep desire to be free, a belief in the power of determination and the shared aspiration to be
Independence is a scary thought. Whether it is a country, a profession, an organization or an individual, the status quo can be safe because it represents a known quantity. One learns how to cope with the expected; it is the
unexpected that presents the greatest challenges.
But as a country we have coped with challenges in a uniquely resilient way. We have tremendous resources and
an indomitable spirit. As professionals it is easy to give up and say there is no hope for change. We can wait for "others" to make us feel better. We can coast towards retirement and leave the "problem" to new professionals. But as Americans we also know that anything is possible.
We can each live out our creed of a strong, proud profession with knowledge, gifts and talents. Wherever we are
we can still make a difference, independent of everyone and everything else around us. Sure, it's a challenge, but we do not as a people shrink from challenges. We turn them into opportunities. Happy Independence to you!