Independence at risk

indepencencehallThe Fourth of July is a pageant celebrating our independence from an Imperial nation that denied us self-rule, dignity and freedom.

It’s a time of marching bands, waving flags, capped with cloud-brushing, soaring multicolored flashes of fireworks, lighting the night sky, to the sound of oohs and aahs from crowds across the nation.

It evokes the language of the declaration hammered out in a hot Philadelphia Hall, striking and revising the words of Thomas Jefferson, setting forth who we believed we were as a nation aborning.

We must reflect upon the sentiments of that grand occasion, and how we may fulfill those worthy sentiments today when our independence is at risk from within and from without, by a foreign nation state, Russia, that usurped this nation’s independence when it interfered in our elections to install the current Chief Executive.

When we declared our independence, we said we believed that we are all “created equal.” We have struggled since to perfect that sentiment, but of late, persons of color, muslims and women are hardly treated as “equal.”

We should respect the notion that “prudence” does dictate that “governments long established,” as ours, “should not be changed for light and transient causes,” but we watch critical functions in the Executive Department compromised or destroyed by this Chief Executive with the support of the Republican Congress.

We are on notice that our nation has a cancer eating away at our historic legacy, at our freedoms, and our culture, by a self-serving chief executive and a congress dominated by his partisan acolytes, serving themselves while disregarding the will of the people.

Our declaration of independence declared, “Governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”

Less than 20% of the nation supports a health care bill drafted solely by the Senate Republican leader.

Our Chief Executive and the same Senate Republican leader are taking their time, as I write this, to threaten and cajole Republican Senators, to pass a bill that millions of Americans oppose.

Our Declaration of Independence was an indictment of oppressive rule.

Our nation is oppressed by a Chief Executive who conducts himself as a thug.

The Declaration sanctioned Great Britain when the King had “refused his assent to laws…”

We have a Chief Executive who would be King who refuses to respect and enforce our laws especially those involving favors and emoluments from foreign nation states.

Like King George, we also have a Chief Executive who has forbidden “to pass laws of immediate and pressing importance.”  Among them are laws and regulations to sustain the health care of millions of Americans, the protections necessary for our air and water, to safeguard our public lands, to provide for the “general welfare.”

Like King George, we have a Chief Executive who “has obstructed the Administration of Justice …”  In regal fashion, claiming unprecedented power to do as he wishes, our Chief Executive fires those who dare to investigate or question his conduct.

This nation has always been concerned about civilian control of the military.  We have a Commander in Chief who abdicates this role.  Like King George, our Commander in Chief “has render[ed] the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power.”

Our Chief Executive indulges in the kingly ambition our First President resisted.

What are we to do when the man who occupies the West Wing acts as a “Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a tyrant ..”

Is that person not, as we found King George, “unfit to be the Ruler of a free people?”

In our declaration of Independence, it was well said that “[A]ll experience hath shown that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.”

We must resist this Administration’s objective that appears calculated to destroy all that was good about this nation.

Our Declaration of Independence plainly stated that “whenever any form of Government becomes obstructive …it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it … to affect their safety and happiness.”

The Declaration further said “[W]hen a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing the same object, evinces a design to reduce [the governed] under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government.”

In this young Administration, we are far past that threshold.  Whether by indictment, resignation or impeachment, it must be done.

Our character as a nation, our cultural DNA, is of rugged independence, as lovers of freedom, with a can-do spirit, and an extended hand to help others on a journey, still underway, to secure for every person the rights that we declared paramount, the rights of “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”