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FROM THE DESK OF Nadia Vingert
Every American knows that the Fourth of July commemorates the adoption of the Declaration of Independence in 1776 — it’s also called Independence Day, after all. The story behind the document, however, gets less attention than it deserves. It’s a fascinating tale, culminating with the birth of the United States of America as we know it. WE HOLD THESE TRUTHS TO BE SELF-EVIDENT The Story of the Declaration of Independence Even after the early battles of the American Revolution, which began in earnest during April of 1775, it was unclear what shape the rebellion would take. At that point, independence was still far from certain. As the Second Continental Congress convened in Philadelphia in May of that year, two groups formed around polar opinions. “The fundamental issue between them was were they fighting for their rights as Englishmen within the British Empire, or were they going to fight for independence?” says historian Richard Slotkin. It was not an easy choice, and both sides held passionate opinions. As the calendar changed to 1776, those in favor of breaking from King George III began to gain momentum. The growth of the revolutionary movement had a number of causes, but two in particular stand out. In late 1775, King George III spoke to Parliament with the goal of enlarging the Royal Army and Navy to quash the rebellion. He went so far as to solicit help from foreign mercenaries. Word of this decision reached the colonies in January 1776, making reconciliation seem less likely than ever before. THE ROAD TO DECLARATION
I LOVE AMERICA!
Those are the only words that come to mind when celebrating Independence Day this month.
In only seven short years, this country has given me more than I had in the 26 years prior to making the United States my home. And in May of this year, I became a naturalized citizen of the United States of America. What a feeling of accomplishment I felt the moment I was handed my certificate! Yes, it took hard work, dedication, and the support of my amazing husband, but it was well worth it. This is an amazing country and still the land of immense opportunity and blessing. I owe my success and happiness first to God and then to all those who sacrificed to make America such a prosperous place for me!
During the same month, Thomas Paine published his famous pamphlet “Common Sense,” which advocated for outright independence. “The custom of all Courts is against us, and will
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– Nadia Vingert
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