Commentary by Sue Morrow: Was your Independence Day more than an excuse to barbecue? |

Commentary by Sue Morrow: Was your Independence Day more than an excuse to barbecue?

Sue Morrow
For the Nevada Appeal

The Fourth of July always conjures up thoughts of soaking up the sun on a sandy beach, picnics on a field of lush grass, backyard barbecues, parades and spectacular fireworks. Potato salad is a culinary must, and of course hot dogs are as American as apple pie.

I’m sure Monday’s Fourth was no exception.

Also known as Independence Day, the Fourth of July was designated as a federal holiday in 1941, and since that time it has been one of the most widely celebrated holidays in the nation.

Here in Northern Nevada, it’s almost a given that the weather will be conducive to outdoor pursuits unlike the preceding three-day Memorial Day holiday, which is often marred by inclement weather including snow or rain or at least chilly temperatures.

Unfortunately, the occurrence that led up to the Fourth of July celebration has mostly gone unrecognized over time.

While tacking a sailboat on a pristine lake or flipping hamburgers or steaks over a barbecue, were we thinking of the momentous event that gave us the freedom and liberty we enjoy and have come to take for granted?

Does anyone give pause to reflect on the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, during the early stages of the Revolutionary War that protested the tyranny of Great Britain?

It was the adoption of that document that formed this great nation – known as “the land of the free and the home of the brave.”

Drafted by Thomas Jefferson with 56 signatures from representatives of the 13 colonies, the Declaration of Independence asserts in part:

“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 those are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.”

Those profound words in Jefferson’s lengthy work are without a doubt the most widely known and quoted. They should be remembered and revered.


I am often dumbstruck by what I hear coming out of the mouths of talking heads, news reporters and anchors and others who appear on the tube. I mean some of it is just plain god awful.

Even our president has a consistent failing with one rule of grammar. He says things such as “a enormous goal” or “a immediate plan, etc.” instead of “an enormous goal” or “an immediate plan, etc.”

But that isn’t nearly as egregious as some things I have heard recently on TV.

How about this? “Everybody are following, etc.”

Or? “Her and her mother went, etc.” How about “She and her mother”?

Or? “It seems there were a lot more snow, etc.”

It appears these offenders were short-changed in the grammar department by their parents and/or teachers.

What a shame.

• Sue Morrow is a longtime journalist and member of the Nevada Newspaper Hall of Fame. She can be reached at