Letter from publishers


 love fireworks—any time and on all occasions—but my favorite display comes on the Fourth of July, because of what it represents, the day of our independence. My most vivid life memories are of major moments of independence, like the days I learned to ride a bike, drive a car and sail a boat. None of these moments came without lessons, conformity or constraints; from the laws of man or to those of Mother Nature, there were parameters to independence. Yet these exhilarating moments were when I felt most inspired to protect my freedom.

        I think about what our forefathers and -mothers must have imagined when they set sail for America to seek opportunities, fulfill their dreams and experience new freedoms. Their determination to protect human rights, individual liberties and sovereignty did not come easy, and it wasn't until the Declaration of Independence was signed that the fireworks began.

    This month’s issue is exploding with stories that express the importance of independence, such as the editorial freedom enjoyed by our own local public radio station, WUWF-FM 88.1. Longtime Pensacola writer Mark O’Brien describes Executive Director Patrick Crawford’s long and winding road to promote the uniquely unbiased news and entertainment provided by public radio. 

    We continue to keep an eye on food and animal rights as society moves toward more local farm and craft-food purchasing. This month’s feature, “Locavore Lingo,” deciphers the terminology, guidelines and labels for locally raised food, offering greater clarity on the rights of farm animals to be treated humanely. Reiterating the need to protect our "right to know," it sets out clear and reliable standards of humane animal treatment. None of these rights is secure without public knowledge and tenacity by animal rights advocates.

    The spectacular burst of fireworks we witness each Fourth of July leaves me awestruck every year, reminding me of the strength, courage and inspiration it takes to protect what is right. This patriotic holiday is a time to remember all that our country is and all that we can be, and it's also a time to celebrate our freedoms. So let’s relax, cook out and proudly wave the flag as we seek to become peacefully united.

Whether it's the wind in your hair or memories of moving away to start a new life that sparks that feeling of freedom, independence represents exuberance and joy. Long may it last!

Happy Fourth of July and enjoyable summer days!


Scott & Daralyn

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