Revolutionary war, patriotism and birth of the United Sates of America concept with closeup on the original 13 star American flag known as the Betsy Ross
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Wealth & Poverty Review July 4 Has Always Been About Resisting Tyranny, and This Year Is No Exception

Originally published at The Federalist

Despite America being currently shaken to its foundation, we are a blessed nation, with holidays such as Independence Day — commonly known as the Fourth of July — to reminisce on that fact. If more Americans understood that they are the true heirs and protectors of the birth of freedom in the world, July 4 celebrations might well take on a new dimension, potentially igniting Americans from all walks of life to sacrifice their time and resources and join the ranks of the growing patriot movement dedicated to saving America’s freedom at this critical time.

The fact is that every other nation before the United States came into being from an evolution of tribes or clans, royalty and blood lineage, inevitabilities of language, culture, tradition, and geography, or from the results of war where the victors carve up the vanquished. America is the only nation in human history that was completely born of noble and deeply spiritual principles: that all men are created equal, that they have been given by God certain rights that cannot be taken away by any man or earthly authority, and that those unalienable rights combine to create and protect a thing called freedom in life. As a result, Americans have always been free to pursue happiness, worship God, speak publicly about their views, and, of course, choose their leaders.

Consider this: The very freedoms and rights we have taken for granted for hundreds of years in the United States did not even exist in Asia — the most populated part of the world — before World War II. Asian states and societies were all autocratic with people at the top having all the power and privileges and the people at the bottom having neither rights nor much in the way of freedom. But after the victory of the Allied powers, democratic self-government was granted to India and Japan in 1947, spreading from there, however imperfectly.

No matter the odds against freedom today, we can take heart and resolve from our history. In the first few years of the War of Independence, George Washington’s undertrained, underequipped, and underfunded Continental Army was only half the size of the highly trained professional British army and their allied German Hessian mercenary troops. The naval mismatch was even greater. The Continental Navy had about 25 converted merchant ships while the British naval power was more than 10 times greater, with 270 dedicated warships concentrated around East Coast colonial ports. Things looked grim for the American cause.

However, the courage, determination, and godly faith of the founders made the difference. The last sentence of the Declaration of Independence before the space allotted for signatures reads, “…for the support of this Declaration, with a firm Reliance on the Protections of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.”

Indeed, July 4 for those founders was a serious and somber occasion. Gen. George Washington was in New York, preparing its defense, when on July 6, 1776, a courier from Philadelphia arrived to deliver a copy of the Declaration of Independence that had been agreed upon by delegates of the Continental Congress just two days before. There were just two signatures on that document: John Hancock, president of the Continental Congress, and Secretary Charles Thomson. Because the odds of prevailing against the British were so low and the penalty for treason was death, it had been decided not to reveal the identities of the other 54 men who had voted for the declaration.

In the summer and fall of 1776, Washington was forced to retreat after losing all three major battles in the New York campaign, at the cost of 4,100 men killed or taken prisoner. Less than two months later, however, Washington had two victorious successive surprise attacks, defeating a Hessian garrison in Trenton, New Jersey the day after Christmas 1776, and then routing the British in nearby Princeton eight days later. The Continental Congress perceived these back-to-back wins as a turning point in the War of Independence. So Congress released the 56-signature declaration to be distributed throughout the colonies.

As it turned out, Washington would lose more battles than he won in the next five years, but he persisted with unwavering faith in God and the cause of freedom. Myriad developments that only providence could have arranged made Washington’s 1781 victory at Yorktown possible — bringing final and total surrender by Great Britain. In retrospect, more remarkable than the reversal of odds resulting in the American military victory, was the spiritual power of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution that followed. These documents established that the rights of the people come from God and not the state, and that the sovereign powers of the state would be shaped and limited by those people.

When secular forces hastened driving God out of America’s culture some 60-plus years ago, that void became filled with false idols and divisive spiritual influences. Little wonder that average Americans today feel demoralized and confused about the self-destructive direction of the country. Our corrupt ruling elite seems to have neither respect for the people’s welfare and rights, nor for the Constitution that served previous generations of Americans so well.

Everything can change if Americans realign their interests with God, who assures us that in time, truth will triumph over lies and good over evil. Just as success followed the resolve expressed on July 4, 1776, we too can tap into the same unstoppable spiritual authority that enabled the founders to overcome impossible odds.

Coming full circle from the opening observation that many have an insufficient appreciation for the meaning behind holidays, the term holiday originally came into usage as being synonymous with “holy day.” July 4 is truly the American holy day for the reasons described. Thomas Jefferson, who championed freedom in his writing of the Declaration of Independence, called America “the world’s best hope.”  Abraham Lincoln, whose cause became expanded freedom by abolishing slavery, called America “the last best hope of earth.” President Reagan declared, “If we lose freedom here, there is no place to escape to. This is the last stand on Earth.” 

The nightmare of one’s house burning prompts an immediate response — dropping everything to save loved ones. Well, America has been set on fire to destroy our freedom, and it is time everyone gets involved to save our home and our freedom.

Let’s make this July 4 a day of celebration of our founding ideals but also a time of renewed commitment to engage and wake up everyone we know that it’s time to resist creeping tyranny and political corruption and reclaim our sovereignty over the precious possessions of our freedoms and rights. Just as Washington succeeded against impossible odds by persistence, courage, and the truth, we too will prevail.