Two hundred and twenty-five years ago, the signers of the Declaration of Independence boldly asserted that all 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." With these words, the signers announced the birth of a new nation and put forth a vision of liberty and democracy that would forever alter history.
Every Fourth of July, Americans celebrate this pivotal moment in our national story, which set into motion the development of a land of freedom and opportunity unequalled in the world. The Declaration brought forth a new style of government, where democratic institutions gained their power from the consent of the governed. Today, we recognize that people around the globe have also drawn inspiration from the Declaration of Independence. Our prosperity and strength stand as a testament to the ideals it embodies.
Independence Day serves as a special time to remember the achievements of our great statesmen, social reformers, inventors, and artists. We pause to give thanks for the many men and women who gave their lives to defend our freedom. At the same time, the Fourth of July provides a unique occasion to reflect on the challenges ahead. By building on the efforts of previous generations and pursuing opportunity and justice for all our citizens, we will continue our Nation's development and help ensure a brighter future for all Americans.
On this great day, I extend my best wishes to all Americans for a safe and memorable Independence Day. God bless you, and God bless America.