For many Americans, this coming weekend is a long holiday marked by barbecues and fireworks.
But the Fourth of July—which this year celebrates 235 years since our nation’s independence—is also a time to remember what makes this country great.
The Heritage Foundation’s vice president of American Studies, Matthew Spalding, gives the history of the Declaration of Independence and explains why Americans celebrate the Fourth of July:
The ringing phrases of the Declaration of Independence speak to all those who strive for liberty and seek to vindicate the principles of self-government. But it was an aged John Adams who, when he was asked to prepare a statement on the 50th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, delivered two words that still convey our great hope every Fourth of July: “Independence Forever.”
At the end of his essay, Spalding shares quotes about why the Declaration of Independence is so important for America.
Of the quotes, which is your favorite? What does the Fourth of July mean to you? Tell us in the comments.