Independence Day Ruminations

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Today the San Francisco Chronicle had an interesting opinion piece, Celebrating independence from ignorance, which starts off: "John Adams and Thomas Jefferson both died July 4, 1826. This was not a coincidence." This sentence piqued my curiosity and led me to read the rest of the article, coming upon this quote from Jefferson's last written document:;/p>

May it be to the world, what I believe it will be (to some parts sooner, to others later, but finally to all) the signal of arousing men to burst the chains under which monkish ignorance and superstition had persuaded them to bind themselves, and to assume the blessings and security of self-government... All eyes are opened or opening to the rights of man. The general spread of the light of science has already laid open to every view the palpable truth that the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few, booted and spurred, ready to ride them by the grace of God. These are the grounds of hope for others; for ourselves, let the annual return to this day forever refresh our recollections of these rights, and an undiminished devotion to them.

I wish we had great leaders who consider the bigger picture. Lacking that, I hope we citizens come together to realize the dream of freedom with the tools of wisdom.