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Commonly as Fourth of July, the Independence Day of the United States of America is celebrated today. This celebration is a federal holiday commemorating the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, declaring American independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain.

The celebration is commonly associated with fireworks, parades, carnivals, fairs, picnics, concerts, baseball games, political speeches and ceremonies, and various other public and private events celebrating the history, government, and traditions of the United States.

In 1763, American colonists who were erstwhile loyal British subjects invoked the principles enunciated in the thirteenth-century English document, the Magna Carta, that no one is above the law. In that year, when the English King began to assert his authority over the colonies to make them share the cost of the Seven Years’ War England had just fought and won, the American colonists protested by invoking their rights as free men. It was only after a decade of repeated efforts on the part of the colonists to defend their rights that they resorted to armed conflict and, eventually, separation from the motherland.

From 1774 to 1789, the sole governing authority presiding over the tumultuous events of the American Revolution was a body known as Congress. Representing the 13 colonies, Congress declared independence in 1776, conducted a war that defeated one of the greatest military powers of its day, and invented a new political entity – an incremental progressive democracy that subsequently became a sovereign independent nation. Today, this nation, the United States of America, serves not only as an exemplar of the continuous struggle for liberty and equality, as well as democracy; it has also become the chief purveyor and protector of such ideals.

As the American nation celebrates its Independence Day today with traditional parades and other commemorative activities, we look back to that day in 1776 when the Congress formally adopted the Declaration of Independence and triggered a movement for human emancipation that continues today.



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