Via the Ayn Rand Institute, traditionally, the Fourth of July is a day for fireworks and cookouts. But we should take the time to also appreciate the deeper meaning of Independence Day.

The founding of the United States of America was an unprecedented achievement of enormous moral and practical significance. America was the first and only nation founded on the idea that your life belongs, not to a king, or to the pope, or to the state, but to you, to pursue your values, your happiness. The Founders believed it was the government’s job to protect this right. On July 4, we celebrate the Founders’ vision of the sovereign individual who is free to live by his own independent judgment and to pursue his own life and happiness.