Published On: Fri, Jul 1st, 2016

A Time to Reflect

My Boca Raton Tribune Family,

The 4th of July ranks as one of my favorite holidays. This weekend, many of us will celebrate

240 years of independence with fireworks and patriotic displays of red, white and blue, just as

the founding fathers commemorated the Fourth of July at the end of the Revolutionary War.

Between enjoying the fireworks, festivals, parades and cook outs with friends and loved ones, I

urge you to reflect on the significance of this day, when we declared Independence and stood up

for the dignity and freedom of man. This is a day for us to relax, but it is also a day to consider

the meaning of the 4th of July, the meaning of the Independence Day.

Take a moment to reflect on a portion of the Declaration of Independence . . .

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by

their Creator with certain unalienable Rights; that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit

of Happiness.”

Let us each ask ourselves, how can I best uphold the same ideals of life, liberty, and the pursuit

of happiness that drove our founding fathers to sign the Declaration of Independence on July 4th, 1776?

What connects and cements us as Americans is our allegiance to an idea first declared in the East

Room of the Pennsylvania State House, 520 Chestnut St., Philadelphia, that all of us are created

equal. It is that undeniable declaration and intentional commitment to equality that we as

Floridians take pride in.

When the Declaration of Independence was signed, 56 patriots pledged their lives and their

sacred honor to defend us. Their legacy continues today through generations who also have

pledged to boldly stand up against tyranny, oppression, and persecution. Their devotion to duty is just as strong, as their willingness to risk their lives for each other and our country.

As you celebrate, let us not forget the law enforcement officers and members of the U.S. Armed

forces who provide a tremendous amount of dedication and sacrifice in the name of protecting

the ideals that America was founded on.

They have given so much to defend those ideals and free institutions we often take for

granted. Their dedication reminds us that preserving America’s liberties comes with a heavy

cost. Please take time to reach out and express your gratitude to them. This could be through a

phone call, a prayer or a friendly “Thank you” if you see one in the streets.

All we have to do is look at the national news for reminders of how fortunate we are to be a safe

nation.

Remember, whether you are at the park or backyard, on the road or in the swimming pool, safety

is paramount.

It is our duty to keep an eye on each other and take care of our neighbors. If your see something,

say something. Let us practice the “Buddy system” although it requires personal courage to stand

up and be loyal to one another.

Above all, during your festivities, if you decide to drink, don’t drive and if you drive, please

don’t drink. Have a plan to get home safely. Please do not let your ego get the best of you. The

hospital or the county jail is not the place for you to be this weekend.

God bless you, our city, our great country, and all who endeavor to defend it.  Happy Fourth of

July!

C. Ron Allen can be reached at crallen@DelrayBeachTribune.com or 561-665.0151.

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