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Independence: Celebrate what our nation stands for

Saturday we celebrate the 244th anniversary of the signing of our nation’s Declaration of Independence, a document in which the 13 colonies told King George III they would no longer tolerate his rule, and that in fact they were united, free, independent states.

We celebrate our founders’ rejection of the tyranny of a man who called them traitors, bemoaned their disloyalty to him, and who had met their resistance to his oppression by sending troops after his own people. To quote a History Channel analysis of that reaction, it was “a notion that his colonists believed impossible.”

And so the resistance became a full-blown rebellion, and the colonists broke free with the declaration: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, 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.”

How important those words are right now. How important that we remember who we are, and what we stand for — what our forefathers died for.

As you celebrate this July 4, ladies and gentlemen, remember. Remember this is not just a chance to set off fireworks and grill out in the backyard. This is a reminder to be the people our Declaration of Independence says we are.

And “That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”

Happy Independence Day, everyone.

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“America is another name for opportunity.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

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“Freedom lies in being bold.” — Robert Frost

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