Tuesday, June 28, 2011

GUEST COLUMN: "Coming Together This Independence Day" By St. Rep. John Adams

St. Rep. John Adams
By St. Rep. John Adams

To me, nothing better represents America than the displays of national pride and unity we have to celebrate our Independence Day. Freedom, democracy, liberty, patriotism—these are all words that come to our minds as we think about what this day means to us. Fortunately, in this country, we all have the opportunity to chase after the American Dream. It’s a dream characterized by hard work and self-reliance, but it is based in the principles written about in our Declaration of Independence—life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
The declaration that the colonists wished to be separated from Great Britain was adopted on July 4, 1776 by the Second Continental Congress, but it is still immortalized today, living in the hearts and minds of our current generation. We carry its significance everywhere we go. Whether exercising our right to free speech or simply ensuring the equal treatment of all, we are drawing from the framework of this historical document.
July 4th is more than a day to honor the past; it is a day to honor the present. It’s also a day that we can express the strong and passionate spirit that marks us as Americans. While we have a diverse population that culminates from a variety of races, religions and other differences, our nation is a patchwork that remains united by our devotion to this free country. It inspires us to meet our aspirations and guides us on our drive to success.
This Independence Day, we must continue to think of those currently fighting to defend our freedom. Whether serving on our soil or in many of the countless places around the globe, the members of our military are keeping us safe and upholding all that the Declaration of Independence first established. They sacrifice themselves for our sovereignty, equality and civil representation. None of these come free, and Americans have been fighting since the days of the revolution to preserve them.
We have many ways of celebrating July 4th, although most of us will spend the day relaxing with our friends and family. No matter where you are, this holiday is a time to come together under a shared sense of patriotism. The history of the United States is well worth commemorating, and I hope you’ll join me in this American tradition.