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John Mercure: Mercurey Rising

Independence Day

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   It's hard to imagine a time when we weren't an independent nation.  We are a relatively young country.  Yet, with that said, we've had one of the steadiest forms of government for one of the longest periods of time. 


  I am 44 years old and the thought of us not being a free and independent nation has never even crossed my mind.  Never.  It is something I take for granted.  People my age in places like Ukraine and Mozambique have lived parts of their lives in nations that have not always been independent.  That must be an incredibly insecure feeling.  We may argue about things like healthcare, social security, and war funding.  But one thing we have never argued about or worried about is whether or not we will be independent.  Guns in the street to settle elections?  It's never happened here.  Tanks during a transition?  No.  We may not always like each other, but we like being free and independent.  We're like a big family.  We fight amongst ourselves, but we will fight together to stay free.


   That brings me back to July 1776.  Men left their families to fight against England, arguably the most powerful nation in the world at the time.  Our Founding Fathers, a rag tag bunch of amateur soldiers taking on the professional army of England.  It had to be terrifying.  You talk about really believing in what you're fighting for.  I admire our current soldiers.  I think there is no more honorable profession than being one of the men or women who are fighting for freedom every day in places like Iraq and Afghanistan.  They are courageous and selfless.  But the fact is that they are also paid.  It is the most honorable job.  But it is a job; with a salary and benefits.  In 1776 they didn't fight for pay.  They fought for freedom.  And they fought for free. 


   Thank you revolutionaries.  Thank you brave revolutionaries.

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