The Story Behind America My Home
America My Home has an interesting background. Several years ago I was working on a book about the interdependence of freedom and character. And during this time I also experienced a unique rekindling of patriotic spirit. I found myself constantly contemplating what makes a society great. Moreover, I was struck by the how vastly different various eras of our country’s history have been. We’ve had periods of shame, for sure. However, we’ve also had periods of true greatness. So, I found myself reflecting on what made the difference. Of course, the answer would prove to lie in character.
Also during this time, a melody also began playing in my head. It virtually haunted me for nearly 7 years. I’d never composed a piece of music before. Still, I felt compelled to do something about it. I wanted to express a particular sentiment in song. Our greatness as a society, I realized, has never lied in our military might or economic power. Both of these strengths are substantial, without question. But our periods of greatness were unquestionably a product of the character of our people. People who honor her best ideals and live them out in their daily lives have always been the ones who make America great. They hold and keep her promise. And it’s upon such folks that the very survival of freedom depends.
Freedom and Character: A Declaration of Interdependence
Ours is a society totally dependent upon character. Our founders knew this well and wrote extensively about it. The premise of our democracy is simple: grant people who already have a solid internal moral compass freedom from oppression, and great things will happen. But in the absence of character, freedom must always be curtailed. That’s why each one of us has the responsibility to keep the dream of freedom alive. No law can really protect us or help us thrive – only character.
An Anthem is Born
In 1999, I collaborated with my wife, Dr. Sherry Simon, and penned the straight-from-the-heart lyrics of the song. And we witnessed it initially performed to a cheering crowd of over 30,000 on Memorial Day, 2001. After the attacks of 9-11, a regional network television affiliate paired the with a video montage of the historic events. That made Anthem for the Millennium, more commonly known as America My Home, go viral. Gratefully, it has since gone on to touch millions of hearts in hundreds of public performances.
Recently, some independent producers have created some new videos for the song. Their high-definition renditions improve upon the grainy off-air recordings first posted on YouTube. You can find them all on the America My Home page. And I hope you will both enjoy and share the link below as we celebrate this Memorial Day weekend.