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Sunday, July 1, 2012

Independence Day 2012!

Hey All --

It's an awkward week we have when July 4th is on a Wednesday, as this is a holiday that some of use to artificially extend the weekend.  Instead, it looks like we have to shortened weeks in a row, rather than one long weekend.  Sorry for those of you who have to work this week, and then go back after the 4th, but let's still acknowledge what the holiday signifies.

On that summer day in 1776 in Philadelphia, the Second Continental Congress ratified a most inflammatory missive addressed to King George III of England, advising him that the 13 colonies of North America no longer wished to be ruled by the Crown.  Without rehashing the text of that document, since it's hard to sift through the popular colloquialisms used in 18th century English, we can review the manner in which the Declaration was constructed, and use it as a model for our own situations in which it's necessary for us to declare our own independence. 

Yes, this may be somewhat repititious, but I feel the need to borrow from last year's post that dealt with declaring one's personal independence from others.  So for those who need to throw off whatever shackles and monitors are keeping them tethered down, here's the outline:

(1) BE CLEAR ABOUT IT. That flowery "when in the course of human events" paragraph was the 18th century way of telling the British monarchy that they were about to be placed on notice of their transgressions and the consequences.

(2) EXPLAIN WHY IT'S WRONG. You and I may know that it's "self-evident." Whoever thinks it's OK to "pwn" you is CLUELESS to that which is self-evident because THEY ARE NOT SELF-AWARE, and need explanations.

(3) READ THEM THE LIST. Assuming you've documented them well enough, of course. It's hard for most self-aware individuals to explain away their documented actions. The CLUELESS ones, of course, will try to convince you (and themselves) that it never happened in the first place.

(4) TELL THEM THE GRAVY TRAIN IS OVER. Oppressors in all walks of life get accustomed to receiving too many free passes. They must be clearly notified that they will no longer receive them, and that boundaries have now been erected.

(5) BE AWARE OF WHAT YOU RISK. Our Founding Fathers were not drafting a school term paper, but an inflammatory document with serious consequences. The more liberal among you will note that they were all white males over the age of 21 who owned property (including slaves).  But putting that annoying issue to the wayside, we must remember they faced grave danger signing that document. Several of them were murdered by the British, some of them lost their property, some of them were poor and penniless after the war.
Not to say that this will happen to you if you declare your own independence. The last thing you need is another reason to put it off. Just be prepared for whatever consequences your former oppressors might throw at you. Make a plan, if you have to. But bottom line, just be ready.

It's a little scary to declare independence for yourself, and sometimes it involves great risk.  But following through on it can be one of the most glorious and self-actualizing things you can do in your life.  To use the words of John Galt from Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged for further reinforcement:  "I swear - by my life and my love of it - that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine."

So let's try to remember that as Hump Day this week is lit up with fireworks on the Hudson River and with barbecue pits in many backyards.  It's never too late to declare your own independence from anyone or anything that is oppressing you, holding you back, or preventing the full enjoyment of life.

Good night all, and Happy 4th in three days!

DISCLAIMER:  The above is meant to demonstrate the value of declaring independence, whether on a personal level or the international.  It does not espouse either a conservative or liberal political stance, nor is it addressed towards any individual or individuals personally.  Any misunderstanding is entirely the responsibility of the reader.