July is the month we recognize the birth of our nation and the arrival of the pioneers in the Salt Lake Valley. Although everything may not be as originally planned, we can be grateful for the opportunities that have been provided to us. July 4th and 24th share a common thread: both dates represent the desire to be independent. Our nation had a longing to be free from the oppressions of the British, while the Pioneers sought freedom from persecution. As we celebrate, it’s my hope that we understand that many have sacrificed for our freedoms. Freedom is not free. Many have given their lives so we can enjoy our inalienable rights. I express my gratitude to the those who have fought for our liberties.
The release of the movie, Top Gun: Maverick, was well-timed. Its theme focuses on the military, parallels the spirit of freedom, and teaches some very valuable lessons. I don’t want to spoil the movie for those who haven’t seen it, but after seeing the movie twice, the following are some things I’ve been thinking deeply about:
- “It’s the pilot, not the plane!” This phrase is a good reminder that it is people that make the difference.
- If something is important enough, it should be attempted, even if it’s a bit riskier than normal. Sometimes, being too risk-adverse causes us to miss opportunities that can change our lives.
- There is a time to let go. We should liberate ourselves from the negative experiences that drag us down and prevent us from looking forward.
- Sometimes, being a maverick results in solutions that haven’t been tried before. Being unorthodox and independent-minded can be beneficial when you’re considerate of others around you. Thinking outside the box has resulted in many innovations that are important to our way of life and freedoms.
- Sacrificing for others so they can have opportunities provides good outcomes. Because of his concern for others, Maverick took on some tasks that were difficult. He cared about those around him.
You might ask, “What does this have to do with North Ogden?” Let me summarize.
- Citizens are the pilots; your involvement can make the difference.
- The new Public Safety Building is an important decision that involves more risk than we are used to. Avoiding this tough decision could affect the future of our city. It’s important enough to move forward.
- Things can change. Concentrating on the past will not lead us into the future.
- We need to think outside the box in dealing with our explosive growth. Doing the same thing as in the past will not create different results. A variety of home types will be required so our children and grandchildren can have the opportunity to live in North Ogden.
- Past citizens and leaders have sacrificed to make North Ogden a great place to live. We will have to do the same to ensure our future. Continuing to care about those around us will strengthen our sense of community.
Mayor Neal Berube