The Fourth of July. Independence Day.
The Declaration of Independence is a thoughtful, well-reasoned, and at the same time stirring, recitation of the events in the history of the American Colonies leading up to the Declaration and the Revolutionary War with Great Britain. While I quote only an excerpt below, the entire document can and should be read for a better understanding of what the early American patriots endured as well as for an understanding of their view of government.
When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect for the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
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.---That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,--- That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness....
We, therefore, the Representatives of the United States of America, ...solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be, Free and Independent States....That they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved;... And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.
God Bless the USA (link)