Freedom is a precious, precious thing, bought with tears, with blood, with lives. We’ll fight wars for autonomy. Immigrants will travel the seas for independence. People will die for liberty.
I adore my personal freedoms, and will go to my grave supporting your right to have your own, too. It’s just that important.
But freedom has a twin brother, without whom freedom cannot exist.
And his name is courage.
Yes, courage is often what you think it is – facing down the gun barrel of an enemy and moving forward despite the risk. Courage is racing into a burning building to save lives. Courage is heroic, and in the moment, and the kind of thing we witness and say, “wow.”
But there is courage, sometimes, in just waking up. In breathing. In continuing to live. In choosing integrity. Day after day, despite the risks, being your best self. Making the small but tough choices. Teaching your children well.
Today, I will celebrate freedom. And I will also laud courage. Because when one is tested, both are tried.
Courage and freedom – hand in hand, building this country. And, every day, building our lives.