Friday, July 1, 2011

The rockets red glare!

Where has this year gone?

On this Friday before the 4th July weekend, most people's thoughts turn to hot dogs, parades, the red white and blue, and the fireworks displays. Patriotic fervor will break out all over the land!

Nothing wrong with that. Independence Day should rightfully be stands as an annual reminder of the fight for freedom that the American folk died for. It stands for escape from tyranny...for freedom...for hope for the future.

It is a reminder of the unbreakable spirit of the American people. The determination for self determination. The willingness to sacrifice for the one thing that is worthy of sacrifice...freedom.

So, on this 4th of July, I ask that in between the hot dogs and beer, in between the enjoyment of family and friends, of social events and great conversation, in between all of the celebration, you spare a few moments to spend with  your children teaching them about freedom. Spend a few minutes quietly being thankful that around 235 years ago, men and women fought and died, so that you could sit on a blanket and enjoy the fireworks that proclaim freedom all over this land.

Freedom. What is freedom?

Clearly, it is worth fighting and dying for as men  and women have been doing that for centuries. But what does it really mean to be free? has just 17 ways of defining freedom.

1. the state of being free  or at liberty rather than in confinement or under physical restraint: He won his freedom after a retrial.
2. exemption from external control, interference, regulation, etc.
3. the power to determine action without restraint.
4. political or national independence.
5. personal liberty, as opposed to bondage or slavery: a slave who bought his freedom.
6.exemption from the presence of anything specified (usually followed by from ): freedom from fear
7. the absence of or release from ties, obligations, etc.
8. ease or facility of movement or action: to enjoy the freedom of living in the country.
9. frankness of manner or speech.
10. general exemption or immunity: freedom from taxation.
11. the absence of ceremony or reserve.
12. a liberty taken.
13.a particular immunity or privilege enjoyed, as by a city or corporation: freedom to levy taxes.
14. civil liberty, as opposed to subjection to an arbitrary or despotic government.
15.the right to enjoy all the privileges or special rights of citizenship, membership, etc., in a community or the like.
16. the right to frequent, enjoy, or use at will: to have the freedom of a friend's library.
17.philosophy . the power to exercise choice and make decisions without constraint from within or without; autonomy; self-determination. Compare necessity ( def. 7 ) .

 As I read through this list of definitions of freedom, it occurs to me that in no way can civilized man ever be free. In America, the founding fathers understood that while freedom from tyranny was worth fighting and dying for, there was a necessity to create a system that protected each and every man from the loss of their freedom in the future.

They understood that tyranny can come in many forms. It can be sourced from a government that is so powerful it forgets that it is merely the vehicle of the people. Such a predicament was to be avoided by a series of checks and balances that prevented it's occurrence. These checks and balances included a democratically elected congress with two houses, and an elected President. What was not foreseen was that the elected people would demand more and more power. That they would put their own self interest before that of their country. That they would get into bed with the very devil if they thought that would advance their own personal agendas and political ends.

The Founders understood that a democracy was simply  another word for mob rule. So they created a representative Republic, a form of democratic government that is ruled by law, not by mobs. They were not perfect, and they knew that the constitution would most likely require modification as a living, breathing document to avoid its destruction over time. They created a method, a process, for the amendment of the Constitution based on the rule of law.

The Supreme Court was created to interpret the rule of law. It was never intended that the Supreme Court would legislate from the bench, that it would be able to redefine the laws laid out in the Constitution depending on the justices own political agendas and personal beliefs.

When American broke the shackles of tyranny, they created in it's place a representative democracy governed by the rule of law.

How disappointed would they be today in what we have done to our Republic? Would they be proud of what America has achieved? You bet they would be! Would they be dismayed at the way the Government has grown and become all invasive in the lives of the citizens? I suspect they would not recognize the workings of today's government. I suspect they would be torn with grief at what we have allowed to happen to our Constitution. I suspect they will be filled with rage at how Presidents of all flavors have abused the office. 

I suspect, dear friends, that they would hang their heads in shame at not having had sufficient foresight to prevent the tyranny that is America today.

Is 4th July worth celebrating? Absolutely it is! But it is merely a celebration of the past. A celebration of the present cannot occur until Americans realize that they have exchanged the freedoms they were given for a few shekels handed out by a Government that no longer cares about the people or the country.

A celebration of the present and of all that makes America great MUST be put on the back-burner until America is great once more.

There is nothing more powerful than people standing together proclaiming the truth, nothing more desirable than people standing arm in arm defending freedom, nothing more beautiful than the twinkle in a child's eye when she sees "the rockets red glare , the bombs bursting in air" and understands deep in her soul that THIS is the freedom worth any price.

Don't let her down. Don't let her dreams, her aspirations, her hopes for the future be dashed upon the rocks of progressive ideology.

Give her reason to celebrate...give her an America that will unwind the transgressions of the past, and proudly stand as a beacon to all, that this is what freedom really is.


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