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The Wrong Day Was Celebrated

July 9, 2015
Joseph T. Pelt - Tribune Editor , Pierce County Tribune

It is said that patriotism is the feeling that your country is the best there is and that you would do anything to protect its sanctity. Is that so wrong? When an ideal, or a principal is so strong that it weaves its way into the fabric of a community that it propels great people to do great things and from that a system of government is born. Patriotism lives in actions taken by citizens to improve their shared lot. That is what drove 56 representatives of the 13 colonies to their historic gathering in Philadelphia, where they defined and justified their rebellion 239 years ago when the Second Continental Congress signed a document declaring the 13 "United States of America" independent of a king. This is something to be celebrated.

Revolutionary things do happen when people pursue a true and righteous common cause, as the signers of the Declaration of Independence did. They did so amid fear of reprisals from a king or even fellow citizens who may have lacked the vision or the fortitude to create change. These patriots acted to mutually pledge to each other and their burgeoning nation, "Our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor." This is something to be celebrated.

These patriots were able, through Divine inspiration, to find the words to convey humankind's inalienable rights and said, "that to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed." And they further stated "that whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness." This is why the second amendment is so important. That is something to be celebrated.

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These patriots took great pains to create a nation that safeguarded the freedom of speech and the freedom of religion, not from religion. It showed through their wisdom that patriotism indeed needed many voices to be one. This is something to be celebrated.

This is a nation that allows free debate from all sides of an issue where the stance of its core existence stands astride on all matters in national debates, as long as those having the debate are pursuing what they believe, in their heart or in their mind to be for the betterment of the Country, and not for an individual or political gain. That is something to be celebrated.

The daring of these patriots echoed in sparklers and starburst, firecrackers and cherry bombs over the 4th of July weekend. This country celebrated from sea to shining sea, in small towns and cities alike embracing a day of courage that transpired some 239 years ago and that continues to blanket us with the freedoms that we hold dear, day in and day out, all day, every day. The celebrations may be simple flag raising, fireworks, or hands over your heart as the pledge of allegiance is recited. But this national holiday represents great aspirations and reflections. It gives us pause to ask the questions: "What does it mean to be an American? What does it mean to be patriotic? How can we make our Country safer, stronger yet maintain our freedoms? This is something to be celebrated.

Yet, on our national holiday, our White House, in our nations capital, basked in a soft yellow glow. That is okay, in years past on this holiday it also basked in the glow of soft lights shimmering in its simple beauty. But, this year was different. Before the birthday of our nation the President of the United Sates of America chose to bathe the White House in rainbow colors to celebrate a Supreme Court Decision redefining marriage. I believe the President instead of pandering to a special interest group with a specific message, should represent all of the people of this country. It is my opinion that if the President truly represented all the people he would not have celebrated one controversial decision or one group with a self-serving agenda. If he was a true leader of this country he would have instead celebrated the system of government that allowed that allowed the decision to be made. He would have chosen to celebrate the ordained system of government that so many men and women died for that made the decision possible.

I may or may not agree with the Supreme Court decision. That actually isn't important. I do believe that this country has a system of government, though flawed at times, is based on the greatness and wisdom of our founding fathers. When the Supreme Court passed its redefinition of marriage we shouldn't have celebrated a group or an ideology, we should have celebrated our country that has a system of government that can make these kinds of decisions. The White House should have been bathed in red, white and blue on July 4th as a symbol of what we were, what we are, and what we will always strive to be. That is something to be celebrated.

 
 

 

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