Aretha Franklin, Our Gratitude to a National Treasure

A subway sign reconfigured today in New York to pay tribute to The Queen of Soul (© Reuters)

There are many reasons to be grateful today to Aretha Franklin today as we celebrate her life and her talent. We’re thankful that she was here with us. She enriched and wove and strengthened the fabric of this culture, brought the streets alive, the house parties alive, the churches alive, made AM radio alive, made FM stereo alive, made MTV alive and made Lincoln Center alive. She soothed us, yelled at us, encouraged us, rocked us, sent us soaring, exhorted us, inspired us, opened our minds and our hearts to a deeper understanding, made us cry, made us appreciate, made us dance and sing together and to yell out loud and Ms. Franklin filled us with joy time and time and time and time and time again. As each of us deals with her passing in our own way across the country and many parts of the world there is no doubt that she was a national treasure who more than earned all of our respect.