From your Meadowbrook Community Council
My favorite holiday is The Fourth of July. It’s certainly the least complicated – nothing to do but enjoy the sights and sounds of friends and family while relaxing in the comfort that comes from being of like-kind: we are all friends, we are all family and we are all Americans.
Try as we might (and we’ve tried mightily over the years) to destroy the dream that is the United States of America, the dream continues because America, with all it’s faults, rests upon a bedrock of beliefs that simply cannot and will never be undone. Those ideas are wonderfully articulated within the Declaration of Independence. Ideas are strong things.
People laugh at me when I mention that on The Fourth of July, I wake up, grab my morning coffee, retire to the backyard and read the Declaration of Independence. But I do. And each year I’m newly amazed at it’s simple elegance.
John Adams, not known for being “the life of the party”, declared his vision for all 4th of July’s to come.
The Second Day of July 1776 [the Declaration of Independence was adopted on July 2 – however, it was not printed until July 4, hence our day of celebration], will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more. You will think me transported with Enthusiasm but I am not. I am well aware of the Toil and Blood and Treasure, that it will cost Us to maintain this Declaration, and support and defend these States. Yet through all the Gloom I can see the Rays of ravishing Light and Glory. I can see that the End is more than worth all the Means. And that Posterity will tryumph in that Days Transaction, even altho We should rue it, which I trust in God We shall not.
(The Book of Abigail and John: Selected Letters of the Adams Family, 1762-1784, Harvard University Press, 1975, 142).
So go, let’s have some fun this 4th of July!
I’ve included a link to a web site about the Declaration of Independence here.Declaration of Independence For some of you, perusing a US History website is not how you prefer to spend your time and I get that. But I prefer that you not go away empty-handed so I’ve cut and pasted my favorite part of the document below. One sentence. 55 words. Enjoy!
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. – That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.
Author: Roland A. Vierra
Reprinted with permission