The Real Meaning of July 4th

The Signers

Have you ever wondered what happened to the 56 men who signed the Declaration  of Independence?

Five signers were captured by the British as traitors, and tortured before they died.  Twelve had their homes ransacked and burned.  Two lost their sons serving in the Revolutionary Army; another had two sons captured.  Nine of the 56 fought and died from wounds or hardships of the Revolutionary War.  They signed and they pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor.

What kind of men were they?

Twenty-four were lawyers and jurists. Eleven were merchants, nine were farmers and large plantation owners; men of means, well educated.  But they signed the Declaration of Independence knowing full well that the penalty would be death if they were captured.  Carter Braxton of Virginia, a wealthy planter and trader, saw his ships swept from the seas by the British Navy.  He sold his home and properties to pay his debts, and died in rags.

Thomas McKeam was so hounded by the British that he was forced to move his family almost constantly.  He served in the Congress without pay, and his family was kept in hiding.  His possessions were taken from him, and poverty was his reward.

Vandals or soldiers looted the properties of Dillery, Hall, Clymer, Walton, Gwinnett, Heyward, Ruttledge, and Middleton.  At the battle of Yorktown, Thomas Nelson Jr, noted  that the British General Cornwallis had taken over the Nelson home for his headquarters. He quietly urged General George Washington to open fire.  The home was destroyed, and Nelson died bankrupt.

Francis Lewis had his home and properties destroyed. The enemy jailed his wife, and she died within a few months.  John Hart was driven from his wife’s bedside as she was dying. Their 13 children fled for their lives. His fields and his gristmill were laid to waste. For more than a year he lived in forests and caves, returning home to find his wife dead and his children vanished. A few weeks later he died from exhaustion and a broken heart.  Norris and Livingston suffered similar fates.

Such were the stories and sacrifices of the American Revolution.  These were not wild-eyed, rabble-rousing ruffians.  They were soft-spoken men of means and education.  They had security, but they valued liberty more.  Standing tall, straight, and unwavering, they pledged: “For the support of this declaration, with firm reliance on the protection of the divine providence, we mutually  pledge to each other, our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor.”

They gave you and me a free and independent America.  The history books never told you a lot about what happened in the Revolutionary War.  We didn’t fight just the British.  We were British subjects at that time and we fought our own government!

Some of us take these liberties so much for granted, but we shouldn’t.

So,take a few minutes and silently thank these patriots.  It’s not much to ask for the price they paid.

Remember: Freedom is never free!

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What does Memorial Day mean to you?

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In the United States, we are observing Memorial Day this weekend.

I wanted to take a minute and share with everyone the significance of Memorial Day to me and, I believe, to all of us.

On Memorial Day, we take time to remember all of the soldiers that died so that we can have our freedom.

The following quotes sum up for me the real importance of Memorial Day. Feel free to share them with your friends

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“It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God that such men lived.” – General George S. Patton

“And they who for their country die shall fill an honored grave, for glory lights the soldier’s tomb, and beauty weeps the brave.”  – Joseph Drake

“A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than oneself.” – Joseph Campbell

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Did I forget Anything?

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The Veteran

It is the
VETERAN,
not the preacher,
who has given us freedom of religion.

It is
the VETERAN,
not the reporter,
who has given us freedom of the press.

It is
the VETERAN,
not the poet,
who has given us freedom of speech.

It is
the VETERAN,
not the campus organizer,
who has given us freedom to assemble.

It is
the VETERAN,
not the lawyer,
who has given us the right to a fair trial.

It is
the VETERAN,
not the politician,
Who has given us the right to vote.

It is the

VETERAN who
salutes the Flag,

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The Flag

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In Memory Of

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To say THANKS

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Remember

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To the Troops

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Hot Dogs, Gasoline and Freedom

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