When you're watching those fireworks explode in the air on July 4, you may start feeling a little bit patriotic. Amp up those feelings of pride with some of these 12 inspiring Fourth of July quotes. From freedom and independence to liberty and justice for all (sounding familiar?), these beautiful quotes get at the essence of what it means to be an American.
Freedom is a big word. It can have a lot of meanings. In America, it can mean the right to follow whatever religion you choose. It can mean choosing to think whatever you want. It can mean living wherever your heart desires. While there's no denying that the United States' history is less than ideal in regards to allowing everyone the freedom they deserve (in fact, it's at times atrocious), this country has come a long way over the past two centuries.
America has a long way to go in becoming a greater country, and by no means are we anywhere near being perfect, but this Fourth of July, let's acknowledge how far we actually have come in this journey for freedom. There will always be room for improvement, and so long as we continue to acknowledge that fact, we're already 10 steps ahead of where we used to be.
1. "My definition of a free society is a society where it is safe to be unpopular." — Adlai Stevenson
2. "Freedom has its life in the hearts, the actions, the spirit of men and so it must be daily earned and refreshed — else like a flower cut from its life-giving roots, it will wither and die." — Dwight Eisenhower
3. "To find yourself, think for yourself." — Socrates
4. "In the truest sense, freedom cannot be bestowed; it must be achieved." — Franklin D. Roosevelt
5. "The great revolution in the history of man, past, present, and future, is the revolution of those determined to be free." — John F. Kennedy
6. "Freedom cannot be bestowed — it must be achieved." — Elbert Hubbard
7. "Freedom is nothing but a chance to be better." — Albert Camus
8. "If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear." — George Orwell
9. "I wish that every human life might be pure transparent freedom." — Simone de Beauvoir
10. "Freedom begins between the ears." — Edward Abbey
11. "We on this continent should never forget that men first crossed the Atlantic not to find soil for their ploughs but to secure liberty for their souls." — Robert J. McCracken
12. "Nothing is more difficult, and therefore more precious, than to be able to decide." — Napoleon Bonaparte
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