A Fourth of July Message from ALSM’s President & CEO
As you know the Fourth of July is an extremely patriotic holiday. We celebrate the independence of our country, the United States of America (USA) with friend and family gatherings, barbecues, parties, games, food, fun, festivals, parades, musical events and fireworks. While all of these events are fun, let us never forget the true meaning of the Fourth of July and what it means for our country and the freedom we experience.
On this day in 1776, the Declaration of Independence was approved by the Continental Congress, settling the 13 colonies on the road to freedom as a sovereign nation. As always, this most American of holidays will be marked with lots of festivities.
To give you some fun facts to talk about during your celebrations that I found on the internet, I found the following facts that may be of interest to you:
2.5 Million – In July 1776, the estimated number of people living in the newly independent nation.
311.7 million – an estimate of the population on this 4th of July.
In 2010, the dollar value of U.S. imports of American flags was $2.8 million. The majority of this amount was for U.S. flags made in China.
$190.7 million – the value of fireworks imported from China in 2010, representing the bulk of all U.S. fireworks imported ($197.3 million). U.S. exports of fireworks, by comparison, came to just $37.0 million in 2010, with Japan purchasing more than any other country ($6.3million).
Towns with Patriotic Names
31 places have “liberty” in their names. The most populous one as of April 1, 2010, is Liberty, MO (29,149). Iowa has four towns (more than any other state): Libertyville, New Liberty, North Liberty, and West Liberty.
35 places have “eagle” in their names. The most populous one is Eagle Pass, Texas (26,248).
11 places have “independence” in their names. The most populous one is Independence, MO (116,830).
9 places have “freedom” In their names. The most populous one is New Freedom, PA (4,464).
1 place has “patriot” in the name (Patriot, IN) with 209.
5 places have “America” In their names. The most populous is American Fork, Utah (26,263).
Fourth of July Cookouts
More than 1 in 4—the chance that the hot dogs and pork sausages consumed on the 4th of July originated in Iowa.
6.8 billion pounds – the total production of cattle and calves in Texas. Chances are good that the beef hot dogs, steaks, and burgers on your grill will come from the Lone Star State, which accounts for about 1/6 of the nation’s total production. And if the beef did not come from Texas, it likely will come from Nebraska or Kansas.
While these fun facts may enhance picnic conversation, let us take a moment or two to think about the reasons we celebrate – and to thank those persons who have sacrificed the most to safeguard our freedom.
“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.” Is it not difficult to think of another statement that so accurately sums up the core values of what we believe in as Americans. The sentiment in this single sentence from the Declaration of Independence have motivated Americans to accomplish great things and to make tremendous sacrifices, all in an effort to make sure that future generations of Americans have the freedom to determine their own path.
No one has done more to advance the cause of liberty than our veterans and those who are currently serving our country. On a day when we celebrate our independence and our freedom, it is appropriate that we also remember the incredible sacrifices they have made. The 4th of July is a time for patriotism, and there are no greater patriots than those persons who have served in the armed forces.
I wish you all a very happy, safe, and fun Fourth of July. Enjoy your celebrations, but also remember the reason we celebrate. Let us remind ourselves that we must cherish and protect our freedom. And let us remember to thank those who have sacrificed to defend our liberty.
Patricia W. Savage