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The big question on today's 1776 Club broadcast is, "When do you feel proudest to be an American?" Clay & David discuss moments and achievements that give them pride, including visiting National Parks, the election of Barack Obama, America's great generosity when natural disasters strike, and — yep, you guessed it — American gymnast Aly Raisman's parents watching her at the Olympics:

Clay: When I saw it, I just burst into tears and I said, "I love this country." I love the innocence of the American people. That innocence that you saw in those parents. That could not be faked. That was some of the greatest beauty I have ever seen in my life.

Watch Raisman's parents below, along with videos of the two-time Olympic gymnast's routines.

When do you feel proudest to be an American?
— Clay

The hosts also discuss happiness, an apartment in Athens, Yosemite, Ansel Adams, glass plate photography, Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher: The Epic Life and Immortal Photographs of Edward Curtis, and a letter from Kirk Keeler. Visit Kirk's website to view his work: "landscape photography from the heart of Yosemite and beyond".

Clay: 1776, the year that everything happened. Jefferson thought that the world would pivot on the 4th of July, 1776 and that would be the date — the line of demarcation between the world that we want to forget about and the world that we want to live in.
David: And it did!
Clay: It has been. Now, the country that needs to get back up to speed is this, our happy republic.

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Aly Raisman … and her parents.

For more video from Olympic Trials, visit
I burst into tears and laughed at the same time because it redeemed the Olympics.
— Clay

Watch Aly Raisman at the Rio 2016 Olympics here: Aly Raisman keeps pace with 14.166 bar routine

More From the Thomas Jefferson Hour

"From Glacier Point, 3,200 feet above Yosemite Valley, Cal." c. 1875. The public domain image in the episode artwork appears via the New York Public Library Digital Collections.