Views expressed in letters to the editor do not represent opinions of The Gazette-Virginian or staff members.

To the editor:

Independence is a freedom that is earned. It takes hard work, determination and working together to accomplish it. We know anything worthwhile is worth fighting for and protecting. America got her independence on July 4, 1776.

Why is independence so important? Simply because we don’t want to be controlled by others. We have been given this freedom to act and do for ourselves. The values we believe in are real and serve the people who have bravely fought for them. Our world is a better place because we are free to live in an independent nation. We are blessed to be able to work, free to worship, free for our children to go to school. Most of all, we have the right to voice our opinions and be heard.

Can you imagine living in a world of dictatorship who will use you to get their agenda accomplished? I know that I wouldn’t and I am certain that none of you would either. God has blessed us with so many precious gifts; one of them being our independence.

There is nothing wrong with the world today. The way the world is lies with the people within. All the things that we have valued through the years have slowly slipped down the drain. The good things have been replaced with selfishness, greed and sin. We should realize that there is enough room in the world for everyone to prosper. In an independent nation no one should be allowed to go hungry, do without clothes to wear. Everyone should be blessed to have all the things they need to survive.

There was a time when our world was beautiful. People worked together and gave of their best. We need to get back to this in order to keep our independence. All we need to do is show a little love because we know a little love goes a long way.

If we are to be at peace with one another and not feel alone, we must first understand each other and be able to forgive. Some times we are too easy to put the blame on someone else.

As Americans we should realize that having independence is bounds and that wisdom and good fortune may not always coincide. A moment of life is a miracle and life is a span of many years of unbelievable growth and treasures.

At one time or another, we have been touched and loved by someone. Too, there are things we may have to reconcile with things we need to be proud of and some we are ashamed of. In order to feel really independent, we must not allow ourselves to judge people or events too harshly. Instead, we need to reach out to people by showing fairness and kindness.

Once this friend and I were talking about the world and being independent. She said, the world will flatter and praise you when you’re doing good, but if you have misfortune and let it oppress you, the same world will cast you down. Don’t let the world turn deaf on your troubles and prosper on your mistakes. My friend also told me that when you felt as if the world was laughing at you, laugh back at the world. Always be strong and don’t let it see your regrets.

Always be proud of your independence. Feel free to feel, to touch, to love, but most of all be yourself. Be proud that you can go, come or even stay where you want to do.

We also have the right to change, to challenge and conquer things that endangers our life. Another good point she made was for me not to shed tears over wasted years because in time, you’ll realize that this old world doesn’t care.

As you read this I hope you truly realize how blessed our independence is to us. Always let others know how proud you are to live in a country that is independent and free. We’re so blessed because we are able to voice our opinions, work at a job we respect, worship at the church of our choice and be able to be who we are and what we want to be. We don’t ever need to live our life in fear and we should always be able to respect others. A nation that stands together is a nation that survives.

Whatever you do, don’t ever take our independence for granted. Whether you believe it or not, it could come to an end at any given moment. So grab hold of it, embrace it, and never let anyone take it from you. Also give God the praise because He is the one who gave His all to see that we have it.

God bless our gift of independence and may we all stand together to see that we keep it.

Pat Holt

South Boston