Self-Evident Truths

John Adams dares to correct Thomas Jefferson’s grammar. John Hancock cracks wise about “fat” King George. Benjamin Franklin jokes about being hung for treason. These moments of levity are brief, as they are brought to a sudden halt when a letter from George Washington is delivered and read aloud. In it, Washington reports from New York of the grave conditions faced by the Continental Army and expresses no illusions about the war, which was imminent and certain. Washington invokes “providence” as his best hope and writes, poignantly, “dear god what brave men I shall lose before this business ends.”

This video clip is from the 1972 movie “1776”, based on the Broadway musical. I have loved this charming film since I was child. From a purely musical standpoint it isn’t noteworthy. But the excellent cast paired with Peter Stone’s screenplay makes for an immensely entertaining experience. And have you ever noticed that in films about American history they always cast a very good-looking actor to play Thomas Jefferson? 😉

Happy Independence Day my fellow Americans. Remember always, and never take for granted, that our Founding Fathers risked their lives to ensure that they – and all of us – would never again have to bow down to kings. For the first time in history, the people of a nation would be citizens instead of subjects.

God bless us all.

Here’s Thomas Jefferson kicking ass, in the final paragraph of the Declaration of Indepence:

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, 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 that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. — 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.

6 thoughts on “Self-Evident Truths

  1. Jennifer says:

    Interesting thoughts for those of us living in Diamond-Jubilee-obsessed Britain 🙂 Hope you enjoy Independence Day!

    • artmodel says:

      Jennifer,

      Honestly, I like the royal family – especially Prince Harry 😉 More importantly, I love the Brits! I consider myself an Anglophile and value the friendship, alliance, and respect that exists between our two countries.

      I’m sure you know I didn’t mean to tweak the noses of my British readers with this post. The colonies breaking away was destined to happened, petulant children that we are. So from us here in America to our former “parents”, no hard feelings? 😆

      Thanks for your comments and well-wishes!

      Claudia

  2. Bill MacDonald says:

    Have to admit that I’m kind of partial to Adams — the Adamses came from my town (Quincy).

    I think that it’s great to be reminded that these were real people with real personalities/quirks and that, grammatical concerns aside, they overcame difficulties that were far more daunting than anything that we currently complain about.

    Happy 4th!

    • artmodel says:

      Bill,

      Thanks for your wonderful comments. Did you see the HBO series on John Adams? If you did I’m curious to know what you thought of it. Your favoritism of Adams makes sense. Yay Quincy! But his legacy often gets outshined by Jefferson, and Washington. Those Virginians!

      Claudia

      • Bill MacDonald says:

        I think that I saw most of it on DVD — thought it was pretty good. I’ve lived in this town for most of my life, and everything is Adams — the two birthplaces, the burial site, the Adams mansion — you can’t escape it. Jefferson, Washington — they did play minor roles, but (according to the schoolbooks we had) there is a definite reason why John Adams is regarded as the father of our country 🙂

  3. violinhunter says:

    Back then, government was a lot more than self-serving politics.

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