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EDITORIAL: Give thought to freedom
This year, we should savor our Independence Day on July 4 more than at any time in recent years and take time to thank those who keep our independence alive.
Who to thank? On Whidbey Island, we need look no further than the Whidbey Island Naval Air Station and the men and women who keep the Prowlers and P-3s flying in service to their country. Without a strong national defense, our liberties wouldnt last long.
Why savor our freedom this year? Simply because the situation in Iraq reminds us that freedom has many enemies, willing to murder any number of men, women and children to make sure it doesnt take root. Freedom is a real threat to those who would rule others with an iron fist, believing they are doing the will of God. Most people wont pay any attention to them if given a choice, so choice is what the enemies of freedom are fighting.
In the United States we often complain, and understandably so, of the growing restrictions in our daily lives, from how we use our land to what we must buckle when driving our cars. But those are minor annoyances when compared to the freedoms we enjoy. Just think of it. We can write anything we want and publish it at Kinkos or on the Internet, stand on the street corner and say what we like, send critical letters to government agencies, travel when and where we want, live anywhere we want, get or quit any job we want, and join any church or organization we want, all without getting approval from authorities.
Most of our freedoms we take for granted, but on Independence Day we should take a few seconds to remember what we have and be grateful. Billions of people would give anything if only they could have the freedoms we enjoy.
Have a happy Fourth of July, and be careful with those fireworks.