DEAR ABBY: At 2 p.m., July Fourth, I would love nothing better than for all Americans to stop briefly and give our country a ring ... well, THREE rings to be exact.
On July 4, 1963, President John F. Kennedy proclaimed the ringing of bells nationwide with the words, "Let's ring freedom bells." I was a White House aide then, and I vividly recall how exciting it was when bells rang across the nation coast to coast. Since then, many Americans have forgotten to keep the tradition going. Let's start again.
From one American to another, I ask all citizens to help me revive the ringing of bells at 2 p.m. this July Fourth in celebration of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence. It's easy. Ring a bell, shake your keys, tap a glass or find a bell-ringing app on your smartphone. It will give our country a much-needed sense of unity and connection to our past as one nation, one people.
The Ironworkers, Sheet Metal Workers and Firefighters International Unions of the AFL-CIO, The National Cartoonists Society and Malmark Inc. have joined with No Greater Love in this special celebration of our freedom and the guardians who protect us -- our troops, firefighters and police.
Please, Abby, make your millions of readers aware of this effort. As inscribed on the Liberty Bell, "Let us proclaim liberty throughout the land unto all the inhabitants thereof." -- CARMELLA LASPADA, FOUNDER, NO GREATER LOVE
DEAR CARMELLA: I'm glad to help. I agree that shared traditions are the glue that binds us together as a nation. So readers, on July Fourth, take a moment to quietly reflect on what this holiday is all about. Then make a joyful noise and thank God for his blessings on our country and the freedoms we enjoy today. That's the American spirit.
DEAR ABBY: My fiancee and I share a credit card that was opened under my name. I use it for gas and household or family needs. She uses it for personal things such as buying dolls for her collection.
I was informed that I will no longer be able to use the card after the last statement we got. (I had spent more than $100 on gas for the month.) I feel I am using the card for the purpose for which it was intended. Buying things that aren't for the family but for her personal enjoyment wasn't our agreement.
I'm not sure how to approach her about this without it becoming an argument. She has a spending problem.
I recently found a job, so I contribute financially to the household. This is something that has been thrown in my face every time we talk about money. I want to see the statement so I can compare who spent how much on what, but when I ask to see it, she gets defensive. -- IN THE DARK IN MICHIGAN
DEAR IN THE DARK: If the credit card is in your name, then you are responsible for anything that is purchased with it. The statements are addressed to you, and you have a right to see them. That your fiancee is refusing to show them to you is a sure sign that she has something to hide.
That's why you must take the card away from her to ensure that she isn't putting you into a financial hole you won't be able to dig yourself out of. And because the lady can't seem to control her spending, I'm urging you to think long and hard before marrying her, because after you do, you will be responsible for her debts.