NEW YORK – New York State Senator Andrew Gounardes who represents the 22nd State Senate District in southern Brooklyn, released the following statement in honor of the bicentennial of the start of the Greek Revolution on March 25th:
“Today, we celebrate the 200th anniversary of Greek Independence Day. As a proud 4th-generation Greek-American, this commemoration holds special meaning for me. My Greek values have always inspired me – and my public service. My team and I strive each and every day to practice the ideals of philoxenia, a Greek word that embodies the belief that we have an obligation to be of service to our fellow human beings no matter who they are, where they come from, who they love, what their faith is, or what they believe. Needless to say, I am so proud of my heritage and that I have been able to share it with so many of you.
In a time when anti-democratic values are spreading like wildfire, celebrations like this are important for enshrining the value, the struggle, and the constant attention that goes into creating and sustaining a democracy. 200 years ago, the Greek people relit the lamp of democracy and illuminated the way to a brighter future.
Here’s to renewing the spirit of democracy with every generation for the next 200 years and beyond! Ζήτω η Ελλάδα!”