Freedom Isn’t Free
As we approach the 4th of July weekend and all of the Independence Day celebrations around the country, I’m struck by how blessed we are to be Americans. The news around the world is such a blatant reminder that we have a gift that we must treasure and preserve at all cost.
When the founding fathers adopted the Declaration of Independence on July 4th, 1776 – they laid the foundation for our gift. In fact, John Adams, a signatory on the declaration – and later our second president, knew it was the kind of day that would be marked and celebrated forever. He wrote to his wife, Abigail, that it “will be the most memorable epoch 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 solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more.”
Granted, he was actually talking about the 2nd of July, the day the Second Continental Congress voted to approve a resolution of independence. But he was right, nonetheless. And every year since, we mark the occasion with great celebration.
But freedom isn’t free. For 200+ years, we have continued to fight to defend our freedom, and for the basic human rights of others. I know so many people, Soldiers and Civilians alike, who have sacrificed more than most can imagine for this country, and this year, we lost two of our USACE teammates, who were selflessly serving to provide a better life for the people of Iraq.
So as you enjoy the fireworks and festivities, please take a few minutes this weekend to remember the cost of our independence, and raise a glass to those who continue to make this celebration of independence possible.
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