The following post is by non-blogger MYRLN, who guest-posts here every Monday.
The Power of One
And so we come to Independence Day — that anniversary of a nation’s freeing itself from the tyranny of an absolute monarchy. America threw off the English shackles. And that was that. No more subservience. Freedom reigned supreme. Forever. Period.
So we celebrate that day every year. We have parades, picnics, fireworks. Some even mention the Declaration of Independence. Some even read it, a few do so aloud. And that’s that. Then the next day, everyone goes back to work in service to the great god Economy and its co-deity, Government. Feeling good. We’ve just celebrated Independence Day. We’re Free.
Hm-m-m. Fought for once, Independence is ours forever. Hm-m-m. In the greater world, such has remained pretty much true for America. But what about WITHIN America? Are we, each and every one of us, free? Or have we forgotten that freedom must be protected individually, asserted regularly, or it will be lost…or taken away? We have those two greedy deities all too willing to strip us of our individual freedoms — those freedoms far more important than an entire nation’s freedom from tyranny. The freedom of ONE. The Individual.
And that freedom — the Individual’s — is the one which the dual deities of Economics and Government have sought to strip away. (Think cost of living, think taxes, think health care, think privacy, think outsourcing, think union-busting…oh, you get it.) Spying, detainment, surveillance, seizure, threat, fear — all sanctioned these days by the Dual Deities. And too much accepted without question. Resistance, after all, could be dangerous, lead to prison. Well…over a hundred years ago, the great individualist, Henry David Thoreau, was thrown in jail for refusing to pay taxes, refusing to recognize the right of Government to levy a tariff on his existence. Afterwards, he wrote (in his “Civil Disobedience”) how the punishment was totally ineffective because the only thing Government jailed was his body. His spirit, his sense of INDEPENDENCE remained free. It could not be jailed. Government, he wrote, “can have no pure right over my person and property but what I concede to it.” And he continued, “There will never be a free and enlightened State, until the State comes to recognize the individual as a higher and independent power.”
But only the Individual can ultimately cause that recognition, insure its presence.
So this year, as you superficially celebrate Independence Day, take stock. Read the Declaration of Independence. Read the Constitution. (Don’t have copies? Why not?) Then take a good hard look at your individual independence, remembering that the stripping away of each individual’s freedom means that eventually the entire nation’s independence will be gone. Taken away by the hands of those like Dumbya Bush and Darth Cheney and Wall Street moguls who think only in terms of their moneyed interests. All individual freedom gradually lost with our meek and subservient individual compliance.
But you have the power to make this a real Independence Day again. If you use it. As the forefathers did 231 years ago.
Make it happen.