Americans never need an excuse to celebrate our birthday. Each July 4, we get together with family and friends, dive headlong into the summer weather, set off the fireworks, and just have a good time. Yahoo!
Call it the Fourth of July or Independence Day, it's always fun, but the celebration does have a serious side that should never be forgotten. This year, especially, we would like to urge all our fellow Americans to think a bit about what the day means.
Look around the world. Nowhere are things perfect. Nowhere is poverty absent, or hunger or sickness. War seems to be a constant. Ethnic and religious differences tear nations apart. There is so much to worry about.
That includes many situations inside our own borders, of course, but there are also a great many things about which we should be truly thankful. Right there, fellow Americans, is where we find so many reasons to celebrate. Because, as gloomy as it may get, in this great nation there is always something to make us smile. We may not be perfect - far from it, actually - but we have more to celebrate than any other nation on earth. And that's what we want everyone to remember on this, our great nation's birthday.
Our republic was founded to provide a place for all to live, free from persecution and free to pursue a lifetime of happiness. Oh, there are no guarantees, but you stand a better chance here than anywhere we can think of.
Nowhere but America are citizens so clearly in charge of their own destiny. A great election will be held this year, where all who care to can vote for a president whose job it will be to lead us forward. Regardless of your political preferences, never forget or take for granted how special that is.
As you gather 'round the grill, or splash about in the pool today, please remember to think about the glorious freedoms that we as Americans enjoy, and about the tremendous effort that went into forming this nation. Say thanks, and have a happy and safe Independence Day.