July 03, 2011

Lessons for Independence

Professor Melissa Harris Perry teaches political science, I have never pursued such coursework. I heard her give a high-spirited and compelling plenary presentation at a conference, "Assuring Equity through Health and Health Reform" and have since followed her tweets, read her book and listened to some of her other talks. I was intrigued by her proclamation that the Declaration of Independence was her very favorite lesson in the curriculum to offer students.  As a document of liberation bound with theological context and political agendas it stands against time with a historical significance worth studying beyond it’s most famous statement:
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”
I’m moved by the passionate debate that produced the Declaration as well as the fortitude it gave the abolitionist movement to fight against slavery.   The 4th of July offers a history lesson for America that should take place with celebration. The reading enables lessons for freedom and independence.  It's a teachable moment.

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