Independence Day. That’s what we’re celebrating, not the Fourth of July. July 4th is just the date of our celebration.
Every country has a July 4th, but America celebrates its independence from Great Britain on that date. Happy Independence Day!
Statue still inspires
As we celebrate another Fourth of July, the words inscribed on the Statue of Liberty in New York Harbor are known by many the world over.
Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to be free,
The wretched refuse of our teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed, to me;
I lift my torch beside the golden door.
I don’t know if my father was inspired by those words when he packed us up and left his beloved homeland devastated by war.
But come we did, as did millions before us. And others, whether on the Mayflower, or a slave ship or on a 19th-century clipper or on a troop carrier as we did in 1952.
America is a nation of immigrants, asylum seekers; those who see it as a beacon of hope and light. It is you and I who are the homeless, the tempest-tossed waiting on our own Ellis Islands. We are the ones who yearn to breathe free; freedom and fences cannot coexist.
To read the history of America is to read our own story. Maybe it is only when we can see that it is our story that we can really understand why neither fences nor politics will ultimately deter those who now fill the detention camps along our southern border.
Bent Tree Lane
‘We the People’
In 1776, a new nation appeared on the scene. Not content to quietly slip in among those that came before. America boldly stated on behalf of all its citizens dedication to “Life, liberty and pursuit of happiness.” If we had been more robust than a few weak colonies clinging to the shore of a far distant land, it might have stirred up more serious attention other than in London.
Happily, for the world, this ringing endorsement of creator-given rights of individual freedom remains strong more than 200 years later and has reached every corner of our globe. It is the continuing ideal we pursue for ourselves and for countless others who still can only view our nation with longing.
Thirteen trouble-filled years later, many of these same men reconvened in Philadelphia to craft an operating document, a Constitution, that would protect individual freedom while providing authority in a central government to allow the new nation to advance.
While many in attendance gave the country little chance of surviving, Benjamin Franklin pronounced the new document to be “so near to perfection” and the best that could be obtained.
Many of its flaws were remedied in the first Congress, and the document has served us admirably over more than two centuries with the need for only 27 amendments. But why is there so much angst in our land? Why so much wringing of hands and tears by many who insist our best times are behind us?
Is it because many are unaware of our history and react like their hair was on fire to each headline and televised news show designed to draw your attention to them rather than the countless stories behind Page 1 that substantiate the general well-being of the nation?
Folks, our future is built each day with events that attest to the values described in our Declaration of Independence. These values are alive and thriving. Our present and our future are built not in Washington but on Main Street.
We still have much to do. We are on our own doing what is required to keep us great, so long as we do not lose our confidence and allow some among us to distract us from the task of extending the benefits of our success to those not yet so fortunate.
For example, over 1.5 million charities have registered with the National Center for Charitable Statistics.
In our generosity, we gave more than $420 billion in 2018 and, with our rapidly growing economy, can expect more this year.
Our central government was never designed to have the share of problem-solving to which it has assigned itself. Real progress is a product of each of us to living our credo each day. Remember, we are all Americans and should expect nothing less.
ROBERT E. FREER JR.
Charleston School of Law
Much has been written about the challenges of growth. The Charleston metro population is growing rapidly, to be sure. But there are only two alternatives to growth: a stagnant population or one that is declining.
Given the alternatives, well-planned and managed growth is far more healthy for a region to remain economically vibrant and an attractive place to live. There are dozens of Rust Belt cities that are experiencing a sad stagnation or a deteriorating decline. They would love to have our growth problems.
TOM DI FIGLIO
Duck Hawk Retreat
In reference to the June 27 Post and Courier article “Dominion to give museum $2.5M”: As far as I am concerned, the company should have kept the money.
When I think of all the folks, especially elderly widows, who cannot afford to cool their homes, I cringe at the thought of this money being given away.
Dominion initially promised $1,000 checks to customers (like it was the company’s to give away).
Dominion did itself no favor by renaming SCE&G. The very definition of “Dominion’’ comes from the Latin dominus, meaning the Lord; God; rule or power to rule; sovereign authority.
May the powers that be overrule Dominion as it takes away from the poor once again.
Country Club Boulevard