Each year on July 4, people of the United States celebrate the country's independence. Americans mark the day by hosting cookouts with family and friends, attending parades, taking trips to the local pool or beach, and hitting up fireworks displays after the sun goes down. It's a day of fun, camaraderie, and patriotism, though the ladder can sometimes get a little lost among all the activity and excitement. This year, before shimmying into your swimsuit or firing up the grill, you should read some patriotic 4th of July quotes to really get you into the spirit of the holiday.
After all, it's not all about spending the day with family and friends. It's also about celebrating the work it's taken (and continues to take) to make this country the best that it can be for all those who live here.
These quotes come from former presidents and first ladies, authors and poets, entertainers, Founding Fathers, and other. Each and every one gets to the roots of patriotism and will make you proud to be an American this 4th of July. Though Americans have many differences and disagreements, there are still some things that can unite them all.
"Liberty is the breath of life to nations." - George Bernard Shaw
"In the truest sense, freedom cannot be bestowed; it must be achieved." - Franklin D. Roosevelt
"Freedom lies in being bold." - Robert Frost
"America was not built on fear. America was built on courage, on imagination, and an unbeatable determination to do the job at hand." - Harry S. Truman
"The American, by nature, is optimistic. He is experimental, an inventor, and a builder who builds best when called upon to build greatly." - John F. Kennedy
"Where liberty dwells, there is my country." - Benjamin Franklin
"The flag is the embodiment not of sentiment, but of history." - Woodrow Wilson
"May we think of freedom not as the right to do as we please, but as the opportunity to do what is right." - Peter Marshall
"The essence of America — that which really unites us — is not ethnicity, or nationality, or religion. It is an idea — and what an idea it is: that you can come from humble circumstances and do great things. That it doesn't matter where you came from, but where you are going." - Condoleezza Rice
"In the unlikely story that is America, there has never been anything false about hope." - Barack Obama
"There is nothing wrong with America that cannot be cured with what is right with America." - Bill Clinton
"The magic with America is that we're a free and open society with a mixed population. Part of our security is our freedom." - Madeleine Albright
"I like to see a man proud of the place in which he lives. I like to see a man live so that his place will be proud of him." - Abraham Lincoln
"It is the flag just as much of the man who was naturalized yesterday as of the men whose people have been here many generations." - Henry Cabot Lodge
"Freedom is never granted. It is earned by each generation." - Hillary Clinton
"The fact is, with every friendship you make, and every bond of trust you establish, you are shaping the image of America projected to the rest of the world." - Michelle Obama
"In the face of impossible odds, people who love this country can change it." - Barack Obama