This past weekend with fireworks and much merriment, we celebrated the declaration of our country’s independence. Not, as some get confused, our being independent from the old world’s superpower, England. On July 4, 1776 we merely announced to the world that we were free and were prepared to back up our words with action.
‘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.
‘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, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by the Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.?
The rest, as the say, is history.
I am always amazed how far the world has come in those 228 years since our declaration.
I am amazed when I go to the grocery store and look at all those red, ripe, ‘Euro-Fresh? tomatoes. Shipped in from Europe ‘fresh.? Amazing. Think about it . . . a hundred years before the Revolution, it took the Pilgrims a little over two months to sail from Plymouth, England to America and now we can ship stuff across the 2,800 miles in a few hours.
Amazing to think that folks like Thomas Jefferson, Benjiman Franklin, George Washington, Thomas Paine, Patrick Henry, et al, could only look up to the sky and guess about what was up there. Just last week, a vessel from earth, launched seven years ago, flew through the rings of Saturn (and is sending back pictures).
Last week Jen bought a workout exercise thing-a-ma-bob at a garage sale. (Is she trying to tell me something?) But, it had no instructions or directions — no nothing. She hopped on-line to the world wide web, found the thing-a-ma-bob, then found the owners manual and printed it off. Lickity-split.
Flying around the world in hours. Reaching into the heavens and returning to Earth. All the world’s information at your finger tips whenever you want it. Fresh fruits and vegetables grown half way around the world.
Comments for the wide-eyed with wonder and easily amazed Don Rush can be e-mailed to: firstname.lastname@example.org
A website to view the entire Declaration of Independence can be seen at www.law.indiana.edu/uslawdocs/declaration.html
Be sure to check out Thomas Paine and Common Sense, too!