It's Independence Day here in the United States. It's a day where we take pause and celebrate the freedoms that our countrymen have fought, bled, and died for, and, all too often, freedoms we have come to take for granted. When you grow up free and never know oppression, it's easy to just expect things to be a certain way because, well, that's just the way our lives are.
But there are many people who don't share this freedom. Right now, in countries around the world, brave men and women are fighting and dying for a small sliver of the freedom we enjoy. Many of these freedom fighters aren't 'military' people either, they're just people who've had enough of oppression and want their children to grow up in a better place, a free place, a place where their voices won't be silenced.
A lot of attention has gone to the ongoing election protests in Iran. Thousands of young, dedicated, Iranians are standing up and demanding that they be heard, demanding that their vote be counted as more than just a mark on a ballot that's tossed away when officials declare the results of an already fixed election. But, sadly, Iran isn't the only place where voices are being silenced, dissidents are being executed, and atrocities are being committed all for the sake of an out of control government maintaining power.
So as you celebrate your freedom today, America, take a moment to cherish it, to truly understand what it means to be a people who don't have to worry about our voice not being heard or secret police showing up at our doors in the middle of the night to arrest us because we sent an email. People in places like North Korea, China, Cuba, and Iran don't have that luxury.
But, still, they speak up;
still, they protest;
still, they raise their fists.
May these brave people from around the world one day enjoy the same freedoms we've come to take for granted.