The Fourth of July

In general on July 2, 2009 at 10:00 am

photo by bigfoto.com

I probably don’t need to tell you this, but this week marks the most American of American holidays: Independence Day, the anniversary of the birth of The United States. On July 4, 1776, Americans posted the “Declaration of Independence,” a revolutionary document severing ties with Great Britain. Most of the document is made of a long list of grievances the colonists had with the King of England, but there is also this famous statement of human rights: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” This passage has has been used to promote human rights ever since, from the abolitionist movement to end slavery to the suffrage movement for women’s rights to the struggle for civil rights in modern history. The Declaration of Independence also embodies a fierce value of individualism—an idea that is so much a part of American culture.

If you’ve been in the US for more than a year, you’ve already seen the celebrations for the Fourth of July. It is the height of summer, with barbecues, picnics, parades, and other outdoor events. Then, at dusk, no matter where you are in the US, you’ll probably be able to hear and see fireworks. Even in the tiny town where I grew up (with less than 5,000 people), everyone gathered on July 4th for a sizable show of fireworks.

If you’re in Los Angeles, here are some of the celebrations you can join on July 4th:
Los Angeles Fourth of July Events

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In the spirit of the Fourth of July, the ULS blog posted a little history of the American flag. Check it out here.

Also, Study Hacks makes the case for lighter course loads and fewer extra-curricular activites in the recent post, “Diligence Versus Ability: Rethinking What Impresses Employers.”


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