Definition of Independence Day – Merriam Webster
: a civil holiday for the celebration of the anniversary of the beginnings of national independencespecifically : July 4 observed as a legal holiday in the U.S. in commemoration of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence in 1776
On Independence Day, we remember the remarkable event, 243 years ago this week, that marked a rare turning point in human history — the founding of a nation on the principle of human freedom.
In July of 1776, at the Second Continental Congress in Philadelphia, 56 men pledged “their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor” to that ideal.
“We hold these truths to be self-evident,” they wrote: “that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
In addition to celebrating the birth of our country, it is also a day to remember all of those who fought and who continue to fight for our freedom and independence every day. I think sometimes we take that freedom for granted. The freedom to not work for a day, the freedom to say and do almost anything we want, the freedom to worship or not worship, the freedom to live indoors and eat three meals a day…it goes on and on.
Now I’m not saying that everyone in America experiences these freedoms, some people struggle every day. What can we do is not forget the people with fewer freedoms than each of us. How? We are certainly not all going to take up arms and fight one another about it, but perhaps this holiday week, if you see someone in need, YOU be that soldier who steps in and offers some support, some food, a visit, or a much needed hug. Maybe be that person who extends an invitation to a party or a local fireworks display. Bring some party food to someone who may be shut in, or offer to watch children for someone who has to work that day. Share an iced beverage, perhaps some iced Buckhead Tea, with someone you know is working hard servicing all of us “celebrators” having a great time. So many options.
This is a not political rant, but we can pass forward some of the intent of our founding fathers – we can treat each other equally, and remember that EVERYONE, even those less fortunate and with fewer freedoms than us, are entitled to “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”