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Photo by Scott Platt from Pexels

By Thomas Griffin, Crisis Magazine, July 2, 2021  

Thomas Griffin teaches apologetics in the religion department at a Catholic high school on Long Island. …

Independence Day evokes a positive spirit among Americans. We view ourselves as “the land of the free and the home of the brave.” So much of our nation’s foundation springs from goodness, courage, and virtue. The freedom once fought for by the courageous men of the Revolution, however, is radically different from the doctrine of unhindered liberty that is preached in 21st century America. In order to preserve our union, we must be rooted in the true notion of liberty or we will be returned to our pre-Revolution days of tyranny.

Aquinas explained that freedom is the ability to choose the good. C.S. Lewis wrote that courage is “the form of every virtue at its testing point.” The temptation to prescribe unhindered liberty (being able to do whatever you want, whenever you want, as long as it makes you happy and you don’t hurt anyone in the process) is a fallacy because it creates cowards out of human beings.