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Facing Arizona: The reasoning behind Facing Arizona

(KTAR News Photo/Sure Shot Photography)

Editor’s note: Facing Arizona is a series that will appear on KTAR.com and social media  — follow KTAR News on Instagram and Facebook for updates — highlighting unique and everyday people across our state and give you a glimpse into their lives.

My name is Thomas, and I am 45 years of age. I was born, and raised, right here in Arizona. I love my state, and Lord willing, I will die peacefully here, many years from now.

One item I find fascinating, if not the most, is the rich and eclectic tapestry of people that comprise her populous. As a young man, it was prevalent to meet others that were also natives. As time has passed, that number has dwindled, and our state has seen an influx of people from across the country.

From the Pacific Northwest to the East Coast, the Midwest plains, and even Canada, people have assembled here in search of a more prosperous life. This type of diversity brings with it an enormous cross-section of opinion and ideology.

Approximately 5.2 million adults are calling Arizona their home with 5.2 million opinions. Each week, I choose to go out and speak to these people and listen to what they have to say. From the mundane to the philosophical, each has a unique perspective on the life that transpires around them. More importantly, they have the blanketed, constitutional right to express these ideas that harbor within.

Whether we concur with their views and interpretations is moot, because their voices should never be stifled. The act of bravery they exhibit in speaking with me should never be taken for granted. They are well aware of the potential consequences of their actions. The ridicule, and sometimes persecution that accompanies a desire to be vocally expressive with their independent thoughts.

It is important to remember that being cognizant of what our fellow man or woman is thinking is tantamount to a deeper understanding of the world around us. That is the reasoning behind ‘Facing Arizona,’ and that is why I am proud to be the one who brings it to you.

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