Happy Birthday America!

The VFW celebrates and thanks all past and present patriots

This weekend marks the celebration of the most important beginning in American history. A beginning that consisted of freedoms, liberty and righteousness inspired by the revolutionary idea to stand up against tyranny … an idea that would forever change the lives of everyone in this great nation. On Independence Day, we celebrate the birth of America.

Prior to July 4, 1776, fear and oppression were synonymous to governing rule. Edicts were issued without consent, trials were held without juries and rulers revoked privileges as quickly as they were granted. Men were not equal – and so with cargos of tea, and the scratch of a pen, a revolution began. Time and time again, men brought forth the radical ideas of freedom and stood up to tyranny despite the looming consequence. Amidst this fervor, the first generation of the American patriot was born – one who had a genuine love for the country and a willingness to sacrifice everything for it, without regret.

25,000 would-be Americans lost their lives, and more than 8,000 were injured in the fight for freedom. The losses, though tragic, were not lost in vain, but for the future of our country’s people. These men were the first to unselfishly sacrifice themselves for the creation of something better, a state of mind, a way of life – the American way.

America learned quickly that freedom does not come free. On July Fourth we are not only celebrating the beginning of America and our independence, we also celebrate the courage, bravery and boldness that today’s men and women of the armed forces display to protect the core values of America in order to keep us free.

Even today, 239 years after our founding, our way of life and vision of freedom meet opposition. With freedom comes the responsibility to defend it, and our service members have proven time and time again that they stand ready to defend what is ours.

As we celebrate our independence, the VFW thanks all of our men and women of the armed forces – our patriots of the past and present – who have defended it and given us hope, not only for our own futures, but for all future generations. They are the ones who have preserved freedom, and who have given us reason to defend it for all future generations. Their fight has and will continue to lead others to a better way of life and truly given us all reason to celebrate our past, our present, our future – our independence.