Today is more than a tribute to summer. It is the anniversary of a great recognition in the history of humankind.
On this day 229 years ago, our forefathers determined "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."
In the Declaration of Independence - signed by the likes of Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, Samuel and John Adams, along with 52 other great minds - it was determined that these were "self-evident" truths.
Truths we still believe today.
And, over the years, these truths have become more than rights and privileges, they have become responsibilities.
How dare we, who have been given so much, take our freedom for granted. How dare we sit idle as life trudges forward.
Let us take control of the liberty endowed upon us to more actively pursue our own happiness and help secure it for those surrounding us.
A year after the adoption of the Declaration of Independence, the Virginia Gazette wrote:
"Thus may the Fourth of July, that glorious and ever memorable day, be celebrated through America, by the sons of freedom, from age to age till time shall be no more. Amen and Amen."
So as the sons and daughters of freedom, let's celebrate that memorable day, and live more fully the liberties guaranteed in that document.