President Eisenhower recognized that our nation was being portrayed as a weak nation. Communist countries were celebrating May 1st by displaying weapons of war, and the Communist party might govern their military. In response, President Dwight D. Eisenhower established Law Day as a day of national dedication to the principles of government under the law in 1958. Congress designated May 1 as the official date for celebrating Law Day. This program continues today and has grown to many countries around the globe.
The United States has a proud history as one of the oldest continuing democracies in human history. Over the course of nearly 250 years, it has experienced wonderful growth—although not without facing many obstacles and challenges along the way. People around the world have long looked to the United States as a model of a republic based on democratic principles. The United States is now, however, at a critical moment in its national history. We face a country divided over many issues— voting rights, policing, public health, and climate change—to name a few. These divisions have roiled our politics. We have experienced decreasing faith in institutions and a growing distrust of one another. We have seen attacks on the justice system, the norms of our democracy, and the rule of law. A general lack of understanding of civics and incivility in our public discourse aggravates these challenges. In this time of division, we the people, must lead the way in promoting civics, civility, and collaboration— the cornerstones of our democracy—to restore confidence in our democratic institutions and the judicial system and to protect the rule of law.
Our leaders must stop condemning each other or the other “party.” Decisions and positions must be made on what is best for our country. We must vote and cast informed votes and not emotion-based votes for the best individuals who offer themselves as candidates.
We are a freedom-loving people who are proud of our ability to be better. We can collaborate to overcome our differences, resolve disputes, and preserve our democracy and republic. To that end, concerned citizens must call on each other to lead the way in promoting civics, civility, and collaboration—the cornerstones of our democracy. We can again be admired as a nation of laws and not of men.