By Carol Tobias
“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.”
Independence Day is one of my favorite holidays. I love history, and the founding of this great nation has always been of great interest to me. The men gathered in Philadelphia who decided to break away from England and form a new country were lawyers, businessmen, and farmers. They came from different backgrounds and likely had different philosophies but all loved America. All were intelligent individuals and, as a group, made up an incredible brain trust.
They were the right people in the right place at the right time.
The Declaration of Independence clearly laid out the framework for a new country. The founding documents– Articles of Confederation, followed by a Constitution and the Bill of Rights– showed incredible wisdom and foresight as to how the government would function. It was, as President Abraham Lincoln later stated, a government, “of the people, by the people, for the people.”
These incredible men recognized that certain rights are unalienable– not given by the government so cannot be taken away by the government.
A democracy operates by “majority rule” but these rights for individuals were recognized as unalienable regardless of majority opinion. In much the same way, rights were established for states to prevent the federal government from consuming and absorbing powers reserved by the states, and the electoral college was established so that a few heavily-populated states could not control the entire country.
The wisdom of the individuals gathered in Philadelphia on this day in 1776 still amazes me. Over the many years, we have strayed from the ideals laid out there. The right to life has been denied to 60 million unborn children. National Right to Life, its state affiliates, and chapters are fighting to make sure the basic principle still applies. Eventually this country will see that the words of the Declaration of Independence also apply to the unborn child.
Pro-life leaders from around the country are gathering in Charleston, SC, this weekend for the 49th annual NRL convention. We are pleased to have leaders from Canada and Mexico join us. These groups look to the United States as a lighthouse, as a shining city on a hill; wanting us to succeed and wanting to duplicate in their countries what we have been able to do in ours.
As we celebrate the birthday of this wonderful nation, let us remember the more than 60 million human beings who have been denied Life. These little ones had no birth-day, were not able to experience Liberty or pursue Happiness.
And let’s recommit ourselves to making sure our leaders and elected officials remember and honor the words that set us apart from every other country on earth.