On July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence was signed, and the United States of America was established. Last week, families across the country celebrated this momentous anniversary with firework displays, parades, and barbeques. Many of us prayed for the men and women who sacrifice their lives to protect our independence and make our country stronger, but few reflected on the real reason we observe our country’s most patriotic holiday.
The original British colonists came to the colonies seeking freedom and opportunity. They saw what would become the United States of America as a land where they could start anew, escaping the religious persecution and monarchial reign they experienced in their home country. They were able to establish the 13 original colonies, create lives for themselves in this new land, and begin to cultivate economic prosperity. However, they were not able to fully escape British rule, and soon, they were left feeling like their government was taking advantage of them.
In 1773, a group of colonists called the Sons of Liberty took action against the overreaching British government they had come to America to escape. Feeling frustrated by unfair taxation, they dumped 342 chests containing 90,000 pounds of tea into Boston Harbor.
This was one of the first acts that led to the American Revolutionary War and our eventual independence. Our Founding Fathers believed so deeply in a representative government and the right to liberty that they were willing to go to war against the British. Thousands of Americans died to secure our freedom in the United States, and the brave men and women of our military have been fighting to defend that liberty ever since.
Over the decades, Americans have embraced the bravery of the colonists and the soldiers in the American Revolution, creating a society that encourages personal freedom, property rights, and economic opportunity. Our Founding Fathers fought for the people of the United States to form a more perfect Union, and our Constitution protects our right to “secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity.” Now we must work to protect it.
It has become increasingly clear that too many of my colleagues in Congress and all of the Democrat candidates for President in 2020 are more interested in a one-size-fits-all form of government than one that actually empowers Americans to make the decisions that are right for their families. They have embraced government-run programs and socialist agendas like single payer healthcare and handouts for those “unwilling to work.” They are threatening to take away freedom and opportunity by raising taxes and giving it all to the federal government. Sound familiar?
The American people are better equipped to spend their own hard-earned money than the federal government. I am proud to represent you in Congress, and I want to ensure the United States never becomes a socialist country. I strongly believe in our Constitution and in liberty for all Americans, and – embracing the spirit of the original colonists – I will continue to work to protect it.
Congressman Dan Newhouse of Sunnyside serves the 4th Congressional District in Washington, D.C.