The Fourth is one of my favorite holidays as a time when citizens should put aside our differences and focus on the freedoms that unite us. The American Republic is still a work in progress, a constitutional system that must be renewed by each generation. This holiday unfortunately shows how our differences threaten to overwhelm our common article of faith in this representative democracy. The Nike controversy shows how our differences are now overwhelming our core shared values, including the very symbol of this nation. Nevertheless, many of us will join today to celebrate these United States and its history and values. My family will celebrate with a cookout and, of course, fireworks.
The Betsy Ross flag is a wonderful symbol for this day. She has long personified the considerable contribution of women to our Revolution. Women made huge sacrifices to gather material for the Revolutionary cause from saltpeter to clothes to lead. Ross made uniforms, tents, and flags for the Revolution from her upholstery shop in Philadelphia. Her iconic flag remains a symbol of a struggle for freedom around core values that still define our nation.
Happy Fourth everyone.