Though July 4th 1776 was the day marked with a declaration of independence
by the colonies against British rule, our country was far from independent
OR free from horrible battles for the next 5 years.
By the time it was over, the Hessians, the French, African-Americans, spies,
loyalists, patriots and traitors all played their parts, and a constitution
was still many years away.
The colonies were in deep debt, battered, and
fighting amongst themselves.
Having just finished reading a historical book recounting those amazing times, I’m in awe of the courage, the determination, and the dedication by men & women of the late 1700’s in their resolve…their boldness…their pluck and resourcefulness.
In many of the lofty oil paintings of the times (as above) the gritty and ugly truth of the war can scarcely
be described and was far worse than the idealized depiction above.
Most of the revolutionary soldiers had no uniforms or even shoes, died of typhoid and other diseases, and
more often than not, went without being paid.
Honestly, I was brought to tears more than once as I read the accounts.
Where are these sentiments today?
We’ve gotten soft.
To be sure, the founders had deep and animated disagreements.
For instance, the current design of the Senate and House of Representatives (The Great Compromise)
was decided by a one vote margin following lengthy acerbic debate.
The signers of the Constitution did not approve of a system of two political parties
for the exact reasons we see today in stalemated shenanigans on Capitol Hill.
I count myself a patriot, and afford the same respect to
those Americans who are NOT of my political persuasion.
The profound victories of the Revolutionary War were not so much won on the
battlefield, as they were in the skirmishes of the mind between disparate
points of view, and the bravery to compromise for the common good.