The Fourth of July is a day that is usually a time when families get together for sunshine hot dogs, fun, and fireworks. Every American regardless of race, sex, income, and political party celebrates the day that the Founding Fathers signed the Declaration of Independence, spurring the start of the American Revolution.
Like many other national holidays, the meaning can often be lost in the festivities. And so it is up to each of us to, in the words of Jefferson, "Educate and inform the whole mass of the people... They are the only sure reliance for the preservation of our liberty."
The American system of government, with the Founding Father's emphasis on "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness," has inspired almost every country in the world to rise up and take control of their own destiny. Constitutional Republics have spread throughout Europe, and just this year fellow freedom fighters as far away as Iran and as near to us as Honduras are standing up for their own independence much like our Founding Fathers did more than two centuries ago.
This is America's lasting legacy. Before 1776, only two Constitutional Republics even attempted to bring any form of freedom and liberty to mankind: The Greek and Roman Empires. But the people of these great nations became apathetic, not realizing, as John F. Kennedy wisely warned, "Complacency is the jailer of freedom."
So, while the Fourth of July has become a day of festivities (celebrating if nothing else, a day by the pool or at the beach), what Americans really are observing is the fact that a relative handful of courageous citizens lit a flame of liberty and installed a form of government that has governed over unprecedented prosperity and individual liberty. And even today, "the glow from that fire can truly light the world."
Bill Wilson - The Daily Grind