04 July, 2011

July 4, 1776

There have actually been quite a few happenings in American history on this day. More than I can reasonably post about. But this one stands out, of course.

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.

On this day, in 1776, those words, along with a few hundred more that are less well known, but equally important, were approved by the Continental Congress. It’s called the Declaration of Independence, but this was, in fact, a Declaration of War against Great Britain.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

Happy Independence Day, America. Take a moment to think about what it’s about, and what those fireworks actually represent.

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