For Independence Day here in 2021, I wanted to read the Declaration of Independence.
I feel inspired by the preamble, when it declares that all are created equal, possessing rights that cannot be trampled upon.
But I find myself particularly appreciating the bulk of the Declaration. Jefferson and company spell out twenty-seven reasons why they are declaring independence. They make a reasoned case, designed to justify their actions to each other and the rest of the world, resting on facts which can be investigated. I see that as the epitome of the Enlightenment.
I read from the complete text available at the U.S. National Archives. There you can also read a little on the history surrounding the declaration, and other interesting tidbits.
Happy Independence Day!