This past Sunday, Lew Williams invited us to remember the War on Terror this coming July 4. I think it would be more appropriate to remember the War on Terror on Sept. 11, which will be a day of remembrance and reflection on the evils of terrorism for many years to come.
July 4 is most properly a day for celebrating and reflecting on what makes us uniquely American. As Mr. Williams points out, our founding fathers created what would become the most free nation in the world 228 years ago.
Take some time this July 4 to read the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Refresh your memory of what people have been dying for throughout the past two centuries - the freedom of speech, the right to practice your religion or none at all, the right to bear arms, the right to be free from arbitrary searches, etc.
The Declaration of Independence lists some of the king's offenses important enough to sever our ties with Britain. These included denying trial by jury and transporting American colonists "beyond the seas" to be tried for offenses. Let us reflect on how well or poorly we are upholding the "inalienable rights" endowed to us by our creator and upheld in the Declaration of Independence.
Finally, in our celebration of American freedom, I agree with Mr. Williams that we should remember and thank those who made it possible. Even as we remember our soldiers who fight overseas, let us also remember those who have strengthened freedom at home - the suffragettes who won the right of women to vote, the civil rights marchers who put an end to Jim Crow laws and the jurors and judges everywhere who do their best to ensure the justice our founders hoped for. All nations have soldiers. America has unparalleled freedom. Let's keep it that way for another 228 years.
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