Celebrating Independence as a nation



The Fourth of July has been celebrated in the United States by people of all creeds and colors throughout the history of our great country.

Independence day, or the Fourth of July, is a national holiday that my family celebrates every year. We have cookouts, fireworks, and even pool parties. Some years, such as this year, fireworks are few, but we celebrate nonetheless.

This is because my family teaches us to appreciate the freedoms we have from a young age. We may have had to fight to abolish slavery and give women the rights they have today, but we would not be here if not for that day.

I have grown up with a love and respect for both my nation and those who fight to protect these freedoms. My great grandfather, uncle, brother’s dad, and even some of my older cousins have all served in the military. While none of them specifically fought for our freedom, many soldiers did. Many soldiers sacrificed everything so that they could form this nation.

Some people feel that this day does not represent their freedom. I can see that. I will be the first to admit that the United States was far from perfect in the beginning.

It was a flawed and underdeveloped nation. We had slaves, women had no rights, and even those of color who were not slaves did not have the same rights as white men. I understand that their ancestors were not free, and I will not downplay this fact.

If they so choose, I will not judge them for not celebrating this day as their Independence day. They have the right to decide not to celebrate because it is a free nation. However, would they be as free as they are now if the United States were not an independent country?

The people in the North that fought to abolish slavery would have had absolutely no say had we still been under the control of Great Britain. So, while I see where this holiday does not mark the day all individual people became independent and free, I want to point out that it is the day that their country became independent from Great Britain. It is the day that The United States of America was formed.

The United States of America belongs to everyone. It belongs to all races and ethnicities, men, women, and children. It belongs to all sexualities and genders. It belongs to all of these people equally.

They may see themselves as separate communities, but that does not change the fact that they all live in one nation. A nation that, before the war for independence, did not exist.
Despite the flaws and the struggles that the nation has faced, it is at liberty. That freedom came at a price. The people who fought for this freedom would not want us to be divided. They fought for the freedom of any who came to seek safety from oppressing nations.

So, with respect for the decisions, others will make, I will celebrate. Not only that, but I encourage everyone around me to celebrate. It does not just have to be on the Fourth of July either.

Americans should celebrate and enjoy this freedom every day because there is no way to know what the future holds. One day, our children or their children may have to fight again for this freedom.

Let us leave them with memories of what this nation grew into and not just the flaws that it used to have. The United States of America has come a long way from where it was as a nation.