Why do we continue to celebrate Independence Day each July Fourth when we no longer cherish independence?
Someday soon, our progressive politicians will propose celebrating the first Monday in July as Global Interdependence Day, and no one will protest as long as it includes barbecues and fireworks.
It’s sobering to ask, who is really celebrating independence?
Our schools no longer teach our children the meaning of the Declaration of Independence.
Our elected officials no longer protect our sovereignty.
Our courts do not recognize or even comprehend God-given “unalienable rights” for which the patriots of 1776 pledged their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor.
Our professors, priests and “futurists” are so enamored of “global citizenship” they see individual rights as an anachronism.
Multiculturalism is not an idea to be debated, it’s the new orthodoxy to be obeyed. Or else!
And so, is it any wonder that independence has a low standing in our hierarchy of “values”?
Until very recently, our new immigrants were the ones who reminded us of our special place in world history. We are the first nation, in Thomas Jefferson’s words, to come into being by the force of reason and not an accident of geography. The fundamental radicalism of the American founding was the idea that individual freedom is among our God-given rights, and government exists to secure those natural rights, not to trample them.
To the established order in 1776, that was a subversive idea, and it remains a subversive idea today.
America was founded on that radical idea, and for two centuries newly Naturalized citizens were among the strongest advocates and defenders of that American idea. But if Americans no longer believe in the idea of America, the America that stands in Ronald Reagan’s words as a “shining city on a hill,” why should we require immigrants to adopt it?
It is not the immigrants who have changed. If we no longer expect or require immigrants to adopt American values, the fault lies not in the immigrants but in ourselves.
It is not the fault of new immigrants that transformative patriotism is no longer taught as an essential part of “becoming an American.” The necessity for “assimilation,” the adoption of American principles and values, has been replaced officially by a painless “integration.” Since all cultures are of equal value and equally ennobling, we no longer need the melting pot. Instead, we have a tossed salad.
The abandonment of America’s unique character begins with the loss of historical memory, which is why the subversive rewriting of American history has been the first priority of leftist ideologues for over a hundred years. The College Board’s revisions in the syllabus for teaching Advanced Placement American History is only the latest chapter in a story that began with the progressive historians of the early 20th Century. Charles Beard, you won.
If we don’t teach our own children the meaning of the American Revolution and the Declaration of Independence, why should immigrants be required to learn it? If parents and teachers don’t know and appreciate these things, how can they teach students?
How many high school graduates today can answer the following history question correctly?
Why did 700 British soldiers march from Boston to Lexington and Concord in April of 1775?
(A) They were looking for tons of tea and merchandise stolen from British ships in Boston harbor by a tax protest called the “Boston Tea Party.”
(B) They were ordered to locate and destroy stockpiles of gunpowder and muskets.
(C) They were attempting to find and deport a large group of illegal immigrants who were being sheltered by a group of local clergymen.
Only two generations ago, nearly every America knew the answer. Today, not so much.
In fact, our ministers of education and culture are loath to acknowledge that the first shots of the American Revolution were fired in opposition to an assault on the right to keep and bear arms, a right now enshrined in the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution.
And yet, somehow our country managed to survive the incremental loss of historical memory over several generations. American patriotism was weakened by the corrosive abandonment of historical memory, but enough remained to provide a moral framework for constitutional government.
Today, even the small residue of patriotism in the American soul is being stripped away by public education.
The void created by the pervasive ignorance of American history is being filled by the New Progressive History, the history of American oppression and exploitation. Our youth are being taught that America was indeed unique and special from the beginning — uniquely evil and uniquely guilty of oppression — oppression and exploitation of not only Native Americans but all minorities who mistakenly sought freedom and prosperity on our shores.
And so, like all American institutions in the new era of global citizenship, Independence Day is being “transformed.” It must cease being a special holiday celebrating the virtues of “independence,” which after all is but a relic of the feudal past. Soon it will become a special occasion for atoning for America’s historic guilt, especially the root of all evil, the guilt of “white privilege.” George Washington and Thomas Jefferson owned slaves, so reading their speeches or studying their political ideas is evidence of a retarded moral consciousness.
On this 240th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, how significant is it that the British and King George have now recaptured the moral high ground of “public safety” through the political agenda of the modern Democrat Party?
Although history records that the first shots fired in the War for Independence were in defense of our right to possess arms to defend ourselves, that right is now under sustained attack by the leading candidate for the office of President of the United States.
What was nobly won by the blood of the Minutemen of 1776 and defended by seven generations of American patriots is now being surrendered piece by piece in legislation, court decision and international treaties — without a shot being fired.
Is there any greater irony on this 2016 Independence Day than Britain’s majority vote to leave the European Union in the name of self-government and national sovereignty, while America’s leading politicians worship the pied pipers of centralized power?
So, yes! Let’s celebrate Independence Day while we still can. Once President Hillary Clinton finishes the repopulating of the U.S. Supreme Court with progressive jurists dedicated to repealing the Second Amendment, we will no longer celebrate the heroism of the Minutemen at Lexington and Concord or the brave proclamations of July 4, 1776.
Our great-grandchildren will read about such quaint celebrations as a historical curiosity, but as global citizens sheltered by the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights, they will no longer be burdened by the weight of American history.
UN General Secretary Chelsea Clinton will see to that.
Tom Tancredo is the founder of the Rocky Mountain Foundation and founder and co-chairman of Team America PAC.
Tom represented Colorado’s sixth congressional district in the United States House of Representatives from 1999 to 2009, and he is a former presidential candidate.
He is the author of In Mortal Danger: The Battle for America’s Border and Security.