The image above of Theodore Roosevelt, rifle in hand and in front of the Rough Rider flag, evokes not only the past and continuing sacrifice of our servicemen and women on the battlefield, but also a deeper question about our commitment to America. James Strock, a director of the Theodore Roosevelt Association, asks this question in his Substack column this morning – Would you have signed the Declaration of Independence, knowing the probability that you would lose your life, fortune and sacred honor as a result? Several signatories did die in the Revolutionary War, others lost all of their property and all were considered traitors by many of their neighbors who remained loyal to the British. For his part, TR left a cushy Washington appointment to fight in the Spanish American War and his advocacy of progressive ideals made him an outcast among his social class.
Such sacrifice and bravery has powered this nation from the beginning and will always be necessary to preserve it, and not only through active service in the military. As we celebrate our independence today, let us remember all of their sacrifices and find a way we can do the same to support the effort to make America ” a more perfect Union”. God bless America and Happy Independence Day!