Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Independence Day

July 4, 1776
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.

The Declaration of Independence.  Can you imagine, Kelvin, how the founding fathers of our 13 original colonies must have felt, as they prepared that document to deliver to the King of England.

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.

These words are all we typically hear of the declaration of independence.  After this passage, the volume usually lowers on the voices, the music gets louder and we're left to "remember" (or imagine) what the rest of the document says.  I've included a link here so you can go read what the rest of it says:  Even if you're not American it's worth reading in it's entirety... at least once.
A lot has changed in the past 236 years.  We don't talk like that now. The written words have not changed, but I think some of the definitions of what was written have changed --  via usage or convention or interpretation.  So the words are pronounced the same, but they don't necessarily mean the same things they did then.  In some cases that's good, and in others... not so much. But I'm not going to debate that here.

What I do say is that this document launched our nation, and I think it's wise to reflect on who we were and what we stood for as a nation in the beginning, because all of our greatness -- and any of our shame -- is an outgrowth of this document and the way we have interpreted or re-interpreted it over the past 236 years.
In any case, I am an American, and am intensely positively proud to be an American and to celebrate our Independence Day, today. And nowhere better in the world can you master your mindset to master your life, than here.
Have an awesome day.