S E N A T E R E S O L U T I O N
CELEBRATING MARCH 25, 2000 AS THE "179TH ANNIVERSARY OF GREEK INDEPENDENCE DAY"
WHEREAS, On March 25, 1821, the Feast Day of the Annunciation, the Greek nation reclaimed its ancient heritage as the "Cradle of Democracy" by throwing off the yoke of oppression which had enslaved its people since the fall of Constantinople in 1453. Conquered by the Ottoman Turks in the 15th century, Greece waged a successful War of Independence (1821-1829) and reinstituted a democratic form of government; and
WHEREAS, It was the genius of Greece which first ignited the flame of freedom in the 6th and 5th centuries B.C., when Athens introduced the idea of direct representative government to the world, thus ushering in a Golden Age of art, architecture, philosophy and drama under such giants of Western history as Pericles, Sophocles, Euripides, Socrates and Plato; and
WHEREAS, The Founding Fathers of the United States of America drew heavily upon the political experience and philosophy of ancient Greece in forming our representative democracy; and
WHEREAS, The founders of the modern Greek state modeled their government after that of the United States in an effort to best imitate their ancient democracy; and
WHEREAS, Greece is one of the only three nations in the world, beyond the former British Empire, that has been allied with the United States in every major international conflict this century; and
WHEREAS, President Clinton, during his visit to Greece on November 20, 1999, referred to modern day Greece as a "beacon of democracy, a regional leader for stability prosperity and freedom, helping to complete the democratic revolution that ancient Greece began"; and
WHEREAS, These and other ideals have forged a close bond between our two nations and their peoples; and
WHEREAS, It is proper and desirable to celebrate with the Greek people and to reaffirm the democratic principles from which our two great nations were born; now therefore be it RESOLVED, That this Senate of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations hereby celebrates March 25, 2000 as the "179th Anniversary of Greek Independence Day" and reaffirms Rhode Island's abiding commitment to the magnificent principles of democracy; and be it further
RESOLVED, That the Secretary of State be and he hereby is authorized and directed to transmit duly certified copies of this resolution to the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church of Cranston, the Assumption Greek Orthodox Church of Pawtucket and St. Spyridon Greek Orthodox Church of Newport.