Think back to Independence Day: July 4th, 1776. Do you know what happened that day? Actually, less than you might think. It was the day that the Framers of the Declaration of Independence decided on the final language. It wasn’t the day that the revolution had started, that was earlier. It wasn’t the day the Constitution was written and ratified, that was years later. It was THE DAY they decided to use as the date of the birth of the United States of America. Get the full story here. Click on the image of the Declaration photo on the left to read the full document.
Words have power, and the Declaration speaks to the ideas and ideals of what individuals must do in a time where the government becomes destructive, and ceases to be responsive to the governed. It is a situation not unlike the position we find ourselves in today.
Do you know what most soon-to-be-Americans were doing on July 4th, 1776? They were fighting — the war had been raging for a year, and people were doing what was necessary. If you visit the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, and go up to the balcony on the second floor, you’ll look down and see this view of Independence Hall. Sure, it and its environs looked different when if was completed in 1753, and when the Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution were debated and written in it, but the point is that the Founding Fathers, their wives and children, risked it all. They were guilty of treason against the Crown, many of them would not survive – but Independence Hall stands today as a monument to what they did, and what they lost, so that we can breathe free today.
Which brings us to July 4th, 2018. We’re not breathing as free as we did last year, or the year before. And I feel your pain. But my anger and terror lead me to action. So join me this Wednesday: will there be a fireworks display in your town? Get there a few hours early and register voters. Let already registered voters know that this November 6th is for all the marbles! Tell them about the candidates in your area that you support and WHY you support them. Let them know your issues, and find out the issues important to them. Find out if someone needs an absentee ballot for themselves or their kids at college. Maybe someone needs a ride to the polls. And if you don’t know what to do with information, need forms, just reach out to me – I’ll hook you up wherever you are.
Not enough? Gather a few friends and talk about what you can do to answer to the issues of the day. Protests and rallies are being held across the nation in the largest numbers ever seen in our history. They are organized via Social Media and ALL of them started with one or a few people who wanted to do something, like the Women’s March last year, the Gun Rallies this year, and the Families Belong Together protests yesterday. They all grew organically and involved hundreds of thousands, if not millions, worldwide. YOU can be a catalyst, and what greater honor to those who fought and won the American Revolution than to plan on the day considered the date our country was founded? Remember the words of Margaret Mead:
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world;
indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”
Need more? Contribute to society: make a donation to a worthy cause. Here are a few ideas: ACLU, Southern Poverty Law Center, RAICES, your local food bank (remember, cash is better than food), a candidate in whom you believe….and that’s just a start. No money? Sign up to donate time to a campaign. Volunteer for everything from recording books to the blind, to delivering food to those who cannot leave their houses due to illness or infirmity to, well, click here to match your skills.
Just don’t stay home and mope. GET OUT AND BE THE CHANGE. And then, go watch the fireworks — they’re beautiful, you don’t know who you’ll meet, and view them as bright shining beacons of the possibilities for Making America America Again. Because this IS America, and it is up to us to save it from the forces of darkness, as those other immigrants did back in the 1770’s.