I’m in Philadelphia this Thanksgiving. Leah, my girlfriend and wife of 40 years, and I love reading biographies. Our favorites are the American founders.

So we decided for three months, starting in Thanksgiving, we wanted to be in Philadelphia. To walk in the footsteps of the Founding Fathers.

Make no mistake, the American experiment in freedom is an unprecedented event. Never before, or since, have men come together to found a nation based on the principles of democracy.

We take it for granted. Today every nation bases itself to some extent on democracy.

But no other nation started with a clean slate. And then wrote a plan like the members of the American Constitutional Congress did in the summer of 1787.

They bound themselves by the rule of secrecy. Then for six months debated and discussed how to create a perfect government. The government Lincoln called, “a government of the people, by the people and for the people.”

The founders warned us not to take democracy for granted. And I suspect that if they were alive today they’d be saddened by what we’ve let happen over the last 70 years.  Yet, despite this I am cheered and optimistic about America’s possibilites and future.

Unlike any other nation the framework for freedom and democracy lives at the heart of the system.

God Bless America.