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Impact Articles

What Defines America?

Impact
Jul 4, 2017

What Defines America?

WORDS BY: ARIELA KOZIN | PHOTOS BY: LINNEA STEPHAN

Fourth of July has evolved into an excuse for a break from work with friends and family. It’s become a day better known for beer and hot dogs than for the day we gained our independence. Don’t get it twisted—we love any excuse to lounge, but we also think it’s necessary to reflect on the state of our country today, what it means to be American, and what true patriotism is about. On this very day 241 years ago, the Declaration of Independence was signed and its first line read: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

We can’t speak for Benjamin Franklin and the rest of the guys that penned that historic document. We do believe they would be proud of those who accept those who are different from them, who are brave enough to be different, who conquered adversity, and who continue to fight for their human rights. With all of that in mind, here is our visual interpretation of what defines America—the people: