On the eve of our nation’s independence, we prepare to celebrate in peace with our families. Some family we cannot be with—scattered throughout the globe, fighting other battles—but in our hearts we make the connection. We understand the fight that was, that is.
Our nation was founded on a fight. For freedom, for peace, yes, but a fight nevertheless. That is the nature of humanity. I do not mean to say that we humans are bloodthirsty provocateurs, only that we crave the fight. To carry the cross. To stand behind a banner. An ideal. Purpose.
An idea won the fight 236 years ago. We have since enjoyed the spoils of a nation never before seen. Yet, the fight continues. Securing our freedom in other lands, yes, but in our hearts as well. For what is a man without a fight?
Surely at this very moment you’re headlong in some battle. Perhaps your fight is against tyranny, oppression or persecution. Maybe it’s against fear. Others still fight for food in their belly or a roof over their head. Some fight for love. Some fight for their God. Men and women shake their fist at the withholding sky and bury their knuckles into a crop comprised of little else than gravel. Women with naked scalps lock eyes with a percentage, grit their teeth, silence cries for mercy from disobedient viscera and take yet another heavy step in the defiance of probability. Even the subjectivity of a mirror’s gaze can start a fight.
Our media is predicated on conflict: Film, television, literature. It’s predicated on drama: Facebook, Twitter, news. They romanticize the fight, pitting hero against villain and protagonist against insurmountable odds. It can also be subtle, however, in a poignant episode of simply doing the right thing–a fight against complacency–or just plain laziness. And it’s profitable, because these industries have learned long ago what we should all be taught from day one—we need to fight.
What are you fighting at this very moment? I ask, not out of a veiled attempt at baiting comments, but out of genuine curiosity. And I ask because frankly too few of us muster the enthusiasm even to ask anymore. To care anymore.
You see, my fight, now as it has ever been, is not against or for any of the above. From time to time, sure, the but my life’s great battle wages against proclivity. In other words, I have yet to find my fight. Maybe I’m lucky, but mostly I feel lost. I’m ready to find my purpose. More than that, I’m eager and actively seeking the path.
Maybe the fight is coming to me.
I’d like to wish you all a happy and safe celebration of a fight sorely needed and justly won. Good fight, America. Keep the gloves up.