Independence Day

Today is July 4th, Independence Day in the United States of America. A day to think about and celebrate the adoption of the Declaration of Independence. 241 years ago, in just two days, our Founding Fathers crafted, voted to approve, and signed this short document that has guided my country ever since then.

Soon after, the Constitution was in place. In all this time, there have only been twenty-seven additions to the Constitution, ten passed together within a few years and known as the Bill of Rights. Only seventeen more amendments have been added in all the years since.

The Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights are very short and to the point. And yet they managed to guide an entire country for almost a quarter millennium as it grew from the original thirteen states to the fifty states of today.

On this Fourth of July, instead of contemplating my usual musings on business and leadership, I suggest that all of you, citizens of many countries, read the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. Think deeply about what you’re reading and how exceptional it is… how exceptional those who crafted it were. Consider how powerful is its message and the guidance it provides. In so few words.

 

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  1. Too few today are willing to provide for the common anything; who in government, business or society are willing to truly, literally “mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor”?

  2. On July 2, I recorded a simple recitation of the Declaration. Your blog post inspired me to record it again.
    http://pretendingnottopanic.tumblr.com/post/162605855762/a-personal-recital-of-the-declaration-of

    Some things ring true today. Others are unimaginable.

    The skill and wisdom in the writing is impressive. I wonder if we’ll see a modern equivalent, and if a modern equivalent would change the world as much.

    Thanks for the inspiration.

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