Next Monday is the 4th of July. Some will call it a day of shame. Some will call it the birthday of our country. No matter what side you stand on, the 4th of July marks a historic change in the world. And it’s definitely more than an excuse to set off fireworks.
In 1776, the United States of America hadn’t happened yet. We were a collection of English colonies under an English king and English law. On July 4th 1776, leaders from those colonies did something audacious, something truly stunning and brave. At risk to life, limb, and freedom, they brought forth the Declaration of Independence. They proclaimed that we as a people have inherent rights and freedoms which were being trampled by an oppressive government.
The risk was substantial. The war was bloody. We almost didn’t make it. But we did. The land we now call the United States of America became its own nation.
But that wasn’t an “and they lived happily ever after,” moment.
The thing is, we as a people had chosen, and mostly still choose, not to be governed by some far away king (or queen, or… Sorry, I’m not sure what the trans-gender equivalent to a king or queen is (If somebody figures that one out, please leave a comment… Inquiring minds want to know)).
If we choose not to be governed by others, that means we have to learn and govern ourselves. Sorry folks, we can’t all runaround doing whatever we want; eventually, that leads to people imposing their desires on others (it doesn’t matter what your politics are, it happens).
We have to learn to think and make choices. We have to understand the world and make excellent decisions. We have to be more than a bunch of whiny little two-year-olds screaming “Mine!” and grabbing at toys.
A world of opportunities
But see, that’s the good part. If we put forth the effort. If we learn to govern ourselves and work with others in constructive ways, the possibilities multiply. Instead of one ruler saying who does what and picking solutions. Every one, billions of people, are free to find solutions, solve problems, achieve great things, and become more than what we’ve been before.
When we govern ourselves responsibly, we can achieve our dreams. It takes effort. It means putting on our big person underwear and checking in for the day. But it’s possible.
That’s what the 4th of July means, dear reader, the beginning of opportunities. It’s scary out there, and getting scarier. But the freedom and opportunities are still out there. For many of us, there’s more freedom and opportunity than ever before.
Don’t let bad choices take your dreams and opportunities, dear reader. Do the thinking. Learn, and do the work. If we do, all good things are possible.
That’s it for this one, dear reader. Some of my work’s calling. See you next post.