Fifty years ago to the day, the United States showed the world what American unity, ambition, ingenuity and hard work could accomplish. On July 20, 1969, two Americans — Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin — became the first human beings to walk on the moon. 

Our country did this during a time of turmoil and dissension. There were more than 50 riots, bombings and other instances of civil unrest in the late ’60s and early ’70s. It’s amazing our country not only survived this period, but performed a feat still unequaled. 

The condition of our nation at that time is similar to where we find ourselves today. We are divided and people are angry. 

Apollo 11 reminds us that unity and progress is possible even among those who fiercely disagree, but it takes full, shared commitment.

The achievement wasn’t without failures along the way. But it was possible only because of total support and simultaneous commitment from the American people, legislators and the president. 

It represents one of the few times in history when the world was unified in anticipation and hopeful optimism. It set the United States apart and gave all of mankind a sense of pride and belief that anything is possible with grit, ingenuity and mutual perseverance.

The conflict in our nation and world can at times seem hopeless, but we are still that people.

Today is the 50th anniversary of an event that surely ranks as one of the supreme victories of human imagination, intelligence and effort. Going to the moon not only brought us together but showed we can do great, unimaginable things when we are unified — even in the face of great adversity. For this accomplishment, we are grateful, proud and hopeful. 

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