Independence Day? Independence from What?
By Ron Ewart
We are celebrating "what" Day? Independence you say! Independence from what? Certainly not independence from government tyranny. We have "tyranny" in spades from our own government, at all levels. When our Founding Fathers wrote and signed the Declaration of Independence, it was a declaration of war against the tyranny of Great Britain. It was a declaration of independence from excessive taxation, from harsh regulations, from no representation and from military rule. The colonials had enough and declared war, with all of the tragic consequences that come from such a declaration. They were willing to die for their freedom and their independence. Today, are we willing to die for our freedom and independence? We wonder!
HERE IS WHAT IT MEANS TO BE INDEPENDENT, (from the dictionary)
1. Not influenced or controlled by others in matters of opinion, conduct, etc.; thinking or acting for oneself: an independent thinker.
2. Not subject to another's authority or jurisdiction; autonomous; free.
3. Not influenced by the thought or action of others.
4. Not dependent; not depending or contingent upon something else for existence; operation, etc.
5. Not relying on another or others for aid or support.
6. Declining others aid or support; refusing to be under obligation to others.
7. Possessing a competency.
9. Expressive of a spirit of independence; self-confident; unconstrained.
If July 4th is Independence Day, it is not the Independence that is defined in our American dictionary. It is not the freedom and independence that was crafted so carefully in our Declaration of Independence by men of vision in a time of conflict, confusion and turmoil, some 230 plus years ago.
Freedom and independence means freedom of choice, freedom of movement, freedom of what to buy, freedom of what to wear, freedom of where to live, freedom of where to work, freedom to live on and use our land without undue government interference and our freedom to roam freely throughout America without having to go through check points and body searches. We are constantly subjected to the authority and jurisdiction of government. We are continuously being influenced by the dictates of government. We can't move sideways without butting heads with an out-of-control, arrogant bureaucrat to get some permit or license. Way too many of us are DEPENDENT on government for our very existence. We are forever relying on government for aid and support. We, as a culture, are no longer competent, self-sufficient, self-reliant and responsible. Some of us are, but way too few. We have been bought, sold, conquered and enslaved with out a shot being fired.
The truth is, America's government has gone way beyond what King George the III imposed upon the colonies. The people of America have allowed themselves to be enslaved by this government and have given up their right to freedom, liberty and independence, because they were and are unwilling to defend their freedom and liberty with whatever it takes. The desire for freedom has been replaced with the desire of comfort and entertainment.
What we celebrate on the 4th of July is a myth and an illusion called freedom. We are not free. As a nation, we are no longer independent and self-reliant. In fact, most of us are so controlled by government and so dependent on government, they have slapped invisible handcuffs on each of us and confiscated our right of free choice and our right to live on our land, unfettered by government interference. Government no longer is restrained by the limits of the constitution, nor does it uphold the God-given, unalienable rights of the individual, as it was mandated to do by that constitution.
But we are a great and a "good" people and to our detriment our greatness and our goodness have been buried deep in our memories and obscured by our very prosperity. I am but a humble writer who believes deeply in freedom and liberty. A freedom and liberty for the individual. An individual freedom and liberty that is natural, as comes from nature, not from governments. A freedom and liberty that was envisioned by our Founding Fathers and codified into the law of man through our Declaration of Independence and our Constitution. I believe that when governments, or groups of people attempt to stifle freedom and liberty, or remove man from them, man's progress through time is depressed and he retreats further backwards into depravity, immorality and serfdom. I believe that freedom and liberty are our strengths not our weakness and if we inhibit freedom by any means, we as a people become weaker. If we as a people become weaker, we lose our creative ability, we lose our ingenuity, we lose our industriousness, we lose our productivity, we lose our can-do spirit, we lose our pride in our accomplishments, we lose our strength and courage to right a wrong when we see it, we lose our generosity and finally, we lose our great goodness. I believe that if the people look to government to solve their problems and acquiesce to its unauthorized power, they abdicate their duty and responsibility to control their own lives and hand it over to a collective. Having done so, they are no longer free men. And further, their actions, or in-actions as the case may be, only encourage the government to usurp even greater power.
What America does will determine the fate of the world. If we forsake freedom, if we sell our sovereignty for expediency or a few pieces of silver, if we break the bonds of our Constitution, if we abdicate our right and duty to defend freedom for ourselves and future generations, we shall descend into the mediocrity, apathy and self loathing under which the rest of the world operates and will be pulled down to their level, never to rise again.
Only one country on Earth has shown the best in man and what can be accomplished under the combination of inalienable freedom and our God-given goodness. If we lose that freedom and the goodness that flourishes under it, we shall surely descend into the abyss of the evil within us, where greed and avarice are the rule, rather than the exception. We are dangerously close.
Freedom, liberty, independence and self-reliance are our heritage. It is those characteristics that made us one of the greatest and good nations on Earth. If we refuse to defend and maintain it, we condemn all future generations, including our own children and grandchildren, to a life of dependence and the chains that come with being dependent. But even worse, we dishonor the memories and the sacrifices of all those who gave their lives, their limbs and their minds, in defense of our freedom.
© Copyright July 4, 2008 - All Rights Reserved
~ The Author ~
Ron Ewart is the President of The National Association of Rural Landowners and may reached for comment via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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