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Friday, July 5, 2013 - Page updated at 11:00 a.m.

Editorial: Support students with our school-supply drive

HAPPY Fourth of July. The birthday of the Declaration of Independence is the ideal time to help prepare students for stewardship of a great land.

The author of our nation’s enduring inspiration, Thomas Jefferson, laid a foundation of inalienable rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Those values guide our annual editorial-page campaign to raise money for school supplies for needy students. Please help.

Generous readers equip students for another school year. Grateful families can use scarce resources for other expenses.

Jefferson was indeed revolutionary. He embraced the Greek origins of the word happiness, which meant a human flourishing based on learning and the perfection of justice.

In “Notes on the State of Virginia,” Jefferson wrote, “Our greatest happiness does not depend on the condition of life in which chance has placed us ...” Happiness equaled occupation and the fulfillment that came with education.

He understood an unschooled nation to be more costly for society than paying for an educated populace.

We ask for your help to provide school supplies — the tools of learning to maintain a revolutionary vision.

Contributions are divided among three excellent agencies: Hopelink, the YWCA of Seattle-King County-Snohomish County and the Seattle/King County Coalition on Homelessness.

They buy, organize and distribute grade-appropriate supplies. They screen applicants. They know the need from the cities to the suburbs, and they reach homeless families and immigrant communities.

Weekly editorials through Labor Day will remind readers about the opportunity to help. Each request draws inspiration from this national holiday.

Readers are invited to send a donation to The School Supply Drive of The Seattle Times Fund for the Needy, P.O. Box C-11025, Seattle, WA 98111, For donations via debit or credit card please go online at or email for details.

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