Today is the 232rd anniversary of the Declaration of Independence and as normal, I sat down and read the entire text of the document. I know that sounds strange, based on my Loyalist/British leanings but it has to be one of the best written documents in the history of mankind. It was a bold statement in it's time and signing it was as good as signing your death warrant if the rebellion didn't go in the right direction. the penalty for treason, (and make no mistake about it, this was treason)was for the guilty, to be "hanged by the neck, but not until dead but rather, to be taken down while still alive, have your bowels drawn out and burned before your face, then to have your body quartered and your parts to be disposed of as the King decided". Even with that, 56 men stepped up and signed that sheet of parchment and created something that had never been before. These 56 men took this bold step and pledged to support each other "with their lives, fortunes and their sacred honor"
I sometimes wonder if we could find 56 such men in the American of 2008. I hope so.
I also thought bit about the role in history that our rebellion served. American is a never ending experiment in self government. It is a fact of history that each time there has been a revolution against an existing government, that the new government that takes it's place is very much like the government that it overthrew. Look at the Bolshevik revolution. It replaced the tyranny of the Czar with the greater tyranny of the communist. In India, they replaced the Raj with a civil service and political establishment very much like that they had fought so hard against. We in America, had the good luck to rebel against a country for all it's faults, led the world in having the first true representative style of government and made it possible for each individual to experience more liberty and freedom than had ever been allowed or experienced in the entire world before that time. The term, "Free Born Englishman" was more than just three simple words, it was a birthright and honor.
We in America are blessed to have come from that fine quality of root stock and tradition.
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