When our forefathers declared independence from Britain, 240 years ago today, they "mutually pledge[d] to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our Sacred Honor". That's what it would take to make their Declaration of Independence stick. Nothing less would do.
As we celebrate this anniversary, let's think about that. Does independence mean that much to us? We live in a society that largely celebrates the opposite. There are millions upon millions of people in this so-called "land of the free" who are not, in fact, free. They are enslaved by dependence on government handouts (without which they could not survive). They are mentally and spiritually reliant upon the affirmation supplied by public opinion, without which they could have no opinions of their own. They prefer to fawn upon the masters whose leadership they blindly follow, rather than be their own masters, thinking for themselves.
I think - I hope and pray and trust - that most of my readers are not among their number. I think most of my readers would take pride in standing with our founding fathers, if necessary; and today, it is necessary. Globalism, political correctness, cultural relativism and other modern ideologies have come to dominate political, social and economic discourse. If you look at the list of indictments contained in the Declaration of Independence, it's startling how many of them could be leveled against the present government of the United States with just as much accuracy as they were leveled against Great Britain at the time.
It's time we renewed our commitment to the beliefs expressed by our forefathers.
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, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.
We need to put the 'unalienable' back into our all-too-often-circumscribed rights. We need to remind our political leaders that their power is derived from the consent of the governed - and that we do not and never will consent to their alienation of the rights for which our forefathers fought and died.
If we do so, that will make this anniversary one to remember and celebrate indeed. If we do not, then Samuel Adams' condemnation is as true for us today as it was in 1776.
If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude than the animating contest of freedom - go from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains sit lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen!