Congratulations to the people of Georgia on the anniversary of your first constitution.
Georgia’s first constitution was an important step in a century-long commitment to joining the community of Western democracies.
You are right to be proud of this constitution, which was one of the most progressive in the world at the time it was drafted.
It recognized the freedom and indivisibility of the state, protected citizens’ core civil and human rights, and established the equality of all people under the law.
It provided for gender equality, protected minorities, ensured the freedoms of belief, expression, and peaceful assembly.
Sadly, the Red Army invasion just a few days later prevented the people of Georgia from enjoying these freedoms for more than 70 years.
Even so, these values expressed in Georgia’s first constitution are as important in 2021 as they were in 1921, and they are valued shared by the people of the United States and the people of Georgia.
All democracies are frequently tested, but our own recent challenges in the United States prove how resilient democracy can be and how committed we must all remain to building more perfect unions, as our own Constitution describes.
It is important, now more than ever, that the people of Georgia unite around the core values which are codified in your first constitution.
Citizens, elected officials, and party leaders from all sides must take steps to de-escalate the current political crisis, work peacefully within democratic institutions, and keep Georgia on its path to continued Euro-Atlantic integration.
Just as there was in 1921, there are those who would like to see Georgia fail at this effort, who view the success of Georgian democracy as a threat.
The people of Georgia worked so hard to establish the country’s first democracy, fought so hard to regain it 30 years ago, and dedicated so much blood, sweat, and tears to rebuilding it. The work of democracy is difficult, and it is never finished, but the United States will continue to stand by and support the people of Georgia in this important work as we move forward together.
You should be proud on this day, of everything the people of Georgia have built over the last 100 years.
We urge you to use this occasion to recommit yourselves to working toward a more perfect democracy on behalf of all your fellow citizens.
Congratulations again, on this important anniversary. Gilostavt.