For weeks, a common tone has been present in the rhetoric and actions of many people claiming to protest injustice. A realization of it came today while viewing a full-page ad placed in the Wall Street Journal accusing all Fortune 500 businesses of systemic racism and this Fourth of July week is a fitting time to share it. Consider this:
Our Founders valued liberty and decided it was worth risking their “lives, fortunes and sacred honor” to pursue the self-evident principles endowed by our Creator. Their actions and signatures on July 4th, 1776 started the difficult and uncertain journey of The American Revolution. Since then, liberty has been a founding principle of our nation. We have struggled, argued, fought, and worked through the true meanings of the word and are all better for it. The famous notion that people should be judged by the “content of their character” instead of race or creed embodies that principle well, but some find it unacceptable and not enough.
Now there is a different attitude among those who see injustices everywhere. Theirs is the spirit of revenge and more closely related to the French Revolution and Karl Marx than the American cause of liberty. It is a soul-poison with an insatiable appetite to claim wealth not earned and punish all who resist. In contrast, our heritage is one built on creating equal opportunity without the presence of despotism. It’s one where dreams can be pursued, risks can be taken, investments can be made, and the rewards of hard work can be enjoyed. Have there been difficulties along the way? Yes, many. Have we disagreed over details? Yes, often strongly. Have we fought to preserve it? Yes, at great costs. Is it still worth the effort to defend? Yes, it always will be.
The reason is, one of the most precious gifts God gave humanity was the freedom to make choices (including the ultimate choice of placing faith in Christ). There will always be those trying to limit and deny freedom because their desire is to control. This week, may we remember the many who have risked their lives for liberty, treasure it as a sacred gift from God and remain strong against those who seek to destroy it.