No, our nation isn’t perfect — nor will it be, as it’s made up of people. But its promise is greater than that of the nations that preceded it, and it’s still the place where much of the world dreams of living. We have not always lived up to our ideals — and there will doubtless be failures in the future as well. But at least we hold ideals, and accusations of hypocrisy and debts unpaid only matter to us because we respect the ideals enough to feel guilt when we fall short of what we want to be.
Happy 245th to the United States. I’m glad to be here.