For many, the 4th of July brings together friends and family, feasting on charcoal-cooked delicacies and taking in a fireworks display from a local civic organization. While you reap the holiday’s bounty, keep in mind a few things.
We, as Americans, are blessed with liberties set forth by our Founding Fathers, and it is our civic duty to continue in their footsteps. Those who imprinted their names upon the Declaration of Independence pledged their lives, fortunes and sacred honor to achieve freedom from the absentee British Empire. The independence we gained was not merely for its own sake, but for a desire to preserve self-determination and forge a will to pursue our own course as individuals.
George Washington and Benjamin Franklin are not just faces which peer from our currency. They, among many others, did not wait until every vestige of liberty had been stolen from them. They understood precedents unchallenged become the norm in a society.
The recent uprisings in Iran (among countless other examples history illustrates) only reinforce the fact that we are fortunate enough to live in a nation which allows us to practice our own religion, have a say in how our government is run, and be able to reinvent ourselves as individuals, families and businesses as many times as it takes to become successful.
No, it is not Sir Thomas More’s Utopia, nor should it be. Yes, it is convenient to become downtrodden and lash out at those who have brought our country to the brink of bankruptcy. We are ultimately in control of our own destiny and can right this ship once more. Think of that while the proud strains of Sousa’s “Stars and Stripes Forever” play in time to the ubiquitous fireworks that light up the nighttime sky.