News / USA

Obama Marks Independence Day

US President Obama 4th of July Address
US President Obama 4th of July Address
VOA News

President Barack Obama is celebrating Independence Day, the national holiday marking the birth of the United States of America 238 years ago. 

In his weekly address to the nation, the president traced the history of the country back to the the nation's "founding fathers" --  the "farmers and businessmen, doctors and lawyers, ministers and a kite-flying scientist"  who approved the new nation's Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. 

Then as now, the president said, the nation's leaders came from diverse backgrounds, "but they were united by a belief in a simple truth - that we are all created equal." 

Obama repeated the Declaration's proclamation that all people have "inalienable" rights, including "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." 

Those principles, he said, have sustained the United States through war and depression as well as peace and prosperity. 

The concepts of liberty and equality, Obama added, "helped us build the strongest democracy, the greatest middle class, and the most powerful military the world has ever known." 

"And today," Obama said, "there isn’t a nation on Earth that wouldn’t gladly trade places with the United States of America."  

The president said the United States has succeeded in so many areas because "generations of Americans have marched, organized, petitioned, fought and even died to extend those rights to others; to widen the circle of opportunity for others; and to perfect this union we love so much."

Obama also thanked members of the American military, especially those serving abroad "on this most American of holidays," and said their efforts make the nation "a shining beacon of hope for the world." 

On a more informal note, he also congratulated the U.S. Men's Soccer Team for its high standard of play at the World Cup in Brazil, and encouraged all Americans to enjoy traditional summertime recreation and have "a great Fourth of July weekend."

You May Like

Disappointing Report on China's Economy Shakes Markets

In London and New York shares lost 3 percent, while Paris and Germany dropped around 2.4 percent More

DRC Tries Mega-Farms to Feed Population

Park at Boukanga Lonzo currently has 5,000 hectares under cultivation, crops stretching as far as eye can see, and is start of ambitious large-scale agriculture plan More

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Areas are spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, source of livelihood for fishermen and herders who have called the marshes home for generations More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: 1worldnow from: Earth
July 15, 2014 8:32 PM
Let us all focus on what Independence is instead of giving credit to Obama for anything! Even in his speeches! We are celebrating independence, independence that was fought and paid for by people who never got a chance to experience it!!!
You are talking about the USA I love and hold dear! But the Obama USA loves to talk, smile for the cameras, talk some more, take selfies, strive for popularity, and smile for the cameras! At least Reagan worked with Gorby when Gorby knew that the Soviet Empire was finished. Do you remember the pictures of the first McDonald's that opened in Russia, it was pure mayhem! McDonald's!!!! That was just a small taste of independence for the Russians. I bet that the Soviet KGB Putin has closed every one of them by now. He is in total control of all media, television, phones, internet. Independence? All media providers have lost all advertisers since Putin took over the media outlets. Check this out for yourself. Ukraine is just the appetizer of the Soviet KGB Putin. There are reports that all independent nations under the former Soviet Union are on high alert, closing their borders, and tightening up their security at check points, border crossings, and airports. And with the super scary sanctions proposed by Obama and EU, I'm sure Putin is laughing and falling out of his chair, I mean throne! With Obama being the leader of the free-world, Putin knows that he is the biggest BS pacifist in human history. Ukraine, for Putin, is like dipping your toes into the water before actually diving in! Think I'm kidding........Poland?
Believe it for yourself! ISIL is going strong---Obama is talking, smiling, taking selfies! Rebels (with Russian weapons) are cutting up UIkraine---Obama is checking his teeth "do I have anything stuck in my teeth?" Boko Haram just kidnapped more girls, and have over run most of eastern Nigeria---Obama is looking at the popularity polls, "45% approval rating? What! Ok Michelle, let's go and try some more selfies, this is BS!!!!" At least Clinton did a darn fine job, and shut up Monica! Yeah, you didn't know he was married, oh the innocent victim you were! I am a Republican by the way. Bush lied. Reagan was the last great president since Lincoln.
Lincoln freed the slaves, but didn't grant them the same freedoms and liberties of whites. FDR (democrat)ensured the policiy of segregation, even had Jimi Hendrix's dad put in the Army stockade to prevent him from seeing his son born! Read that story for yourself. If Lincoln freed the slaves, then why was Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr running around making speeches 100 years later? Independence Day for all Americans should be recalculated to 1965 when ALL Americans were granted freedom and equal rights. Why bring out this topic concerning slaves and independence, it's easy to understand:
"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."
"But when a long train of ABUSES and USURPATIONS (slavery?), pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security."
These lines of justifications for a war with England is in our Declaration of Independence. Our reasons for Independence was not honor to ALL Americans until 1965!!!

by: meanbill from: USA
July 04, 2014 12:25 PM
US President Obama gave his speech, touting the US, and "the US having the most powerful military the world has ever known"..... (but, in all reality)... The US with the greatest most powerful military force the world has ever known, hasn't "won" a single conflict or war, they ever started or participated in, since WW2.... have they?.. NOW what good is having the greatest most powerful military the world has ever know, if you can't defeat anybody?... and if the US didn't have the greatest most powerful military the world has ever known.... they just might have "negotiated" with other countries, instead of interfering in the other countries politics, and starting wars, and causing violence, killings, destruction and wars, that continue on to this day..... JUST MAYBE?
In Response

by: 1worldnow from: Earth
July 11, 2014 7:35 AM
Meanbill, to begin with...blah blah blah! That's why you will never....blah blah blah.....unequal treaty....blah, blah-blah? This blah is about blah, maybe if you blah, then you just might blah! Oh, and nice comment about celebrating Independence Day, you total freakin loser! For a guy who claims to have been in the infantry, you have a unique way of showing your true soldier's side. Come on, Meanbill, you weren't in the infantry. You were in the military, as a....ummmmm....a marshmallow! You were a fluffy and spongy marshmallow, weren't you? Somebody get me a chunk of Hershey's and 2 graham crackers.....QUICK!!!!

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs