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Dan Rather Writing New Book Exploring Patriotism, Titled What Unites Us

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Dan Rather is working on a new book — and its subject couldn’t be more timely.

The 85-year-old veteran CBS newsman announced on his Facebook page on Thursday that he was hard at work on a book about patriotism, titled What Unites Us.

“I want to share my sense of the basic tenets that I see as the foundation of the country I hold so dear. It is patriotism, as I define it, not as a divisive cudgel but a common purpose,” Rather wrote. “It is also a patriotism that will not ignore the sins of our nation, but challenge them honestly and head on. So in the book, I will be exploring themes that I see as fundamental to holding together this great experiment in democracy.”

Set for publication this fall, the book was inspired by many of the conversations Rather had been having on social media in the wake of the 2016 presidential election.

“As we all know, we live in turbulent and disorienting times. And yet conversing with all of you has renewed my optimism in this nation and its people,” he said. “I love the United States. I love the noble ideals under which it was founded. And I am in awe of the commitment of countless brave men and women who have toiled and sacrificed so that the truths we hold to be self-evident can be felt by all Americans – regardless of race, gender, religion (or lack thereof), and whom they choose to love, and how. It’s an imperfect journey, but we have come too far to give up the fight for justice.”

Since the rise of now-President Donald Trump, Rather has been rather outspoken online — writing that Trump’s win “threatens to crumble some of the foundations of our democratic institutions.”

He assured his readers, however, that What Unites Us will be “less tied to the headline of the moment.”

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“…For this book I have tried to step back for a wider perspective,” he said. “I want to share my sense of the basic tenets that I see as the foundation of the country I hold so dear. It is patriotism, as I define it, not as a divisive cudgel but a common purpose. It is also a patriotism that will not ignore the sins of our nation, but challenge them honestly and head on. So in the book, I will be exploring themes that I see as fundamental to holding together this great experiment in democracy.”

Rather’s publisher, Algonquin Books, describes What Unites Us as “a collection of wholly original essays” about “the institutions that sustain us, such as public libraries, public schools, and national parks; the values that have transformed us, such as the struggle for civil rights; and the drive towards science and innovation that have made the United States great.”

What Unites Us hits shelves Nov. 7. Pre-orders are now being accepted.