Thursday, June 23, 2011

Speaking of Freedom: Independence Day 2011

The Signing of the Declaration of Independence

Greetings Fellow Patriots,
July the 4th will soon be upon us once again. Independence Day. Cook outs, fireworks, ball games, etc, etc, etc... That's the way we celebrate, right? Most every one does and our members celebrate in these ways, too. But we strive also to remember and appreciate that America is about so much more than that. She is about liberty and justice for all.

I have for some time been planning to write about one of the things that is so special about America, the idea of American exceptionalism. This is a much maligned and misunderstood term and perhaps Independence Day is a good time for me to put in my 2 cents worth.

What American exceptionalism does and does not mean: It does not mean that Americans are somehow inherently superior people. That seems to be what those who have attached a negative connotation to the term think. But this makes no sense whatsoever given the fact that our population is made up of people from "every nation, tribe and tongue."

American exceptionalism does mean that the American Way-the system of government and society devised and instituted by the Founders-provides a framework of just law which, when adhered to, makes it possible for anyone to reach their maximum potential, i.e. to live an exceptional life.

The principles of American exceptionalism are articulated in The Declaration of Independence and codified in The Constitution. Perhaps these principles cannot be better summarized than by the words of the documents themselves found in the prologue to the Declaration and the preamble to the Constitution. I never get tired of reading them and I don't think we can do so too much. So, here they are:

The Declaration of Independence
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,...

The Signing of The United States Constitution

The Preamble to the United States Constitution
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

May we the members of MCP, in reliance on God, work to restore a right understanding and application of American exceptionalism. Then may God bless America once again. And may He bless us each and all this Independence Day.

Richard Cochran, President
Macon County Patriots
Independence Day, 2011

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