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Happy Independence Day

The Fourth of July, a day that changed the course of history. It is the day the colonists declared their independence from Great Britain. Those who signed the document showed great courage, risking their lives and fortunes. I doubt that any of them, in their wildest dreams, could have envisioned the great country that their action produced.

The Declaration of Independence was written by five people: Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Roger Sherman, and Robert R. Livingston. If you haven’t read it lately, check it out here. I wonder how many times they had to rewrite it? And without a computer! The first paragraph states:

“When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.”

Continuing on, the writers laid out their case for separation from England. They listed the abuses by the English king, closing with a pledge:

“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.”

Now that’s something to celebrate! Have a great Fourth. And, God bless America.

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