Happy Independence Day and Why it Matters

Happy July 4th to all my friends in the USA and around the world!

In our busy lives it’s easy to lose sight of America’s greatness and to forget why we shook the world in the first place.

This July 4th let’s remember that the United States of America was the first time since the rise of feudalism that people could own their own land and govern themselves.

That’s a big deal.

Sure, there had long been parliaments and senates and such, but kings, queens, emperors and empresses had really been in charge.  Right up until 1776, the British Crown could force you to board troops, could levy taxes against you without recording your vote, and even put you in irons without a hearing or seize your stuff.  Escheatment still survives to this day, a vestigial organ reminding us that unclaimed property reverts to the ownership of the state because, in the past, everything really belonged to the Crown anyway.

Yes, the United States of America is a really big deal, a remarkable experiment that continues to this day.  There are still plenty of places in the world that are controlled by absolute rulers, sultans, kings, despots, communist parties, and so on.  And while the USA is no utopia, there are reasons why everyone wants to get in.

You’re a grand old flag.  Forever in peace may you wave.

2 responses to “Happy Independence Day and Why it Matters

  1. James A Williams

    Huzzah–three cheers for an eloquent post and for this imperfect but amazing country!

    • Robert Mitchell

      Thanks James! By the way, my wife took the flag photo as we were driving west out of Greensboro, NC on Route 40 on our 20th anniversary trip. Biggest flag I ever saw. It’s absolutely immense, so big that you see it for miles. It’s so massive, and its cloth so thick, that it ripples in slow motion like an apparition. The effect is surreal and mesmerizing. It gave me goosebumps.

      The flag is a jaw-dropping 40′ x 80′ and it is flown by Camping World in Colfax, NC. Camping World flies one at every location! And since their flags regularly violate local ordinances, they often have to take to social media to rally local support for code variances.

      What a flag!

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