The man who penned “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness” into our Declaration of Independence must be smiling right now. Those unalienable rights, despite the inevitable disappointments, have flourished and we here in Charlottesville, Virginia are reaping the fruits of Thomas Jefferson’s hopes, dreams and brilliant plan like few places in this world.
From his beloved Monticello, which overlooks his University and the “Happiest city in America,” one can see the verdant farms still in place, one can feel the rich diversity below, living and loving together a little better each day. One can bask in music, art, fine food and Virginia wine while we celebrate America’s creativity, philosophy and intellect as our little town unfolds it’s riches and shares the passionate minds that call this place home.
We may not be the center of the universe but we are a bright spot on the map and we’re getting brighter every day. If we are to be known for anything 238 years after Thomas Jefferson proposed these truths to be self evident, “Happiness” pretty much covers all the bases. Pass it on.