This July 4 is the 243rd birthday of the United States of America. What does Independence Day mean to you and your family? How do you plan to celebrate our nation's independence from England?

Here are three quotes to get us thinking about our freedom.

“When the people fear the government there is tyranny, when the government fears the people there is liberty,” John Basil Barnhill.
“I hope we once again have reminded people that man is not free unless government is limited. There's a clear cause and effect here that is as neat and predictable as a law of physics: as government expands, liberty contracts,” Ronald Reagan.
“Liberty means responsibility. That is why most men dread it,” George Bernard Shaw, Man and Superman.

Also, the Liberty Bell, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, has this inscription: "Proclaim Liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof," from Leviticus 25:10. This bell has been an important symbol of our freedom. It was also used as the symbol for the abolitionists and the women suffragists.

What do freedom and liberty mean to us today? Are we thankful for those who bled and died so that we have the freedom to live our lives as we wish — to work hard, make our own decisions and run our lives the way we see fit?

Or, do we want government to make our decisions for us? How much freedom do we want in our lives? Do we want to choose where to live, work, worship, who to be friends with, or allow others to make these decisions?

Some feel life is easier when others dictate these decisions. That is not true freedom and restricts our lives. For myself, I want the freedom to choose my course in life, unhindered by government.


Crestview July 4 celebration 

The City of Crestview will host a fireworks show again this year. The festivities begin at 6 p.m. July 4 at Twin Hills Park, located at the corner of Highway 90 East and Hathaway Street North. At 7 p.m. there will be a watermelon eating contest with a homemade ice cream competition following. The fireworks will begin at 9 p.m.

This is always a fun community activity, and it is free. Be sure to get there early and bring chairs or a blanket to sit on. The fireworks display is always beautiful.

Go to for more information.

Happy Birthday America!

Janice Lynn Crose, a former accountant, lives in Crestview with her husband, Jim; her two rescue collies, Shane and Jasmine; and two cats, Kathryn and Prince Valiant.